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Make Flexible Work Options Mainstream; Just Wishing A Happy Mother’s Day Isn’t Enough

Many more women can earn while staying at home with their children if they are given flexible work options, and fulfilment beyond motherhood.

Working mothers have a lot on their plates, be it work commitments or family responsibilities. Despite this, many manage to excel in both aspects, especially if they get flexible work options.

India has a significantly lower rate of economically active working women compared to the global average. In many cases, women prefer to take a career break after childbirth, while others prefer quitting their jobs to raise their children. Another percentage of women look for flexible work options where they can work from home, so they don’t have to give up the career they have worked so hard to build.

Recently, there have been a lot of posts from industry thought leaders highlighting how companies need to invest in working moms because motherhood spurs a woman to bring out the best in others, be it at home or at work, which is a defining characteristic of any brilliant leader.

Employers still do not trust work from home moms

The harsh reality is while many companies rave about women’s liberation and empowerment, when it comes to employing a women who wants to work from home, the typical response is a raised eyebrow. However, even if women are granted the “privilege” of working from home, the pay they receive for their work is a mockery of their qualifications and experience. The primary reason for this is a lack of trust. Employers generally don’t trust mothers seeking work-from-home opportunities because of the stereotype that mothers will spend more time managing babies and doing household chores, than meeting their daily goals.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, women worldwide were compelled to leave the workforce at disproportionately high rates because of the lack of childcare options. Schools were also shut down for more than two years. Adding to the difficulty for parents of young children, record numbers of daycare centres stopped operating during the pandemic to adhere to the social distancing norms imposed by the government to curb the spread of the coronavirus. The paid economy has experienced a massive loss of talent, and human potential, as a result. If the women workforce of a country is not prioritised after motherhood, half of the nation’s minds will be confined to the domestic sphere, eventually leading to the nation’s downfall.

Work-from-home models have indeed garnered popularity among several forward-thinking companies as a result of the pandemic, making it a feasible option for mothers. However, a lot of Indian companies still need to broaden their outlook and implement the work-from-home or a hybrid model in reality, rather than lamely preaching messages of promoting and empowering women and mothers.

Flexible work arrangement is the need of the hour

It is high time renowned organisations and startups built a flexible work environment for working mothers. This, in turn, will help create trusted and transparent work relations between employers and their women workforce. A few online platforms are already making a splash by making flexible work opportunities available for mothers so they can earn an income while taking care of their families.

Many more women can earn an income while staying at home with their children if they are given flexible work options. Having this flexibility gives working mothers more fulfillment and balance in life, besides making them accomplished supermoms!

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Image source: shutterstock

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About the Author

Monalisa Biswas

Monalisa is a working mother and a content specialist with over a decade of experience in writing and editing. Born and brought up in Guwahati, she currently resides in New Delhi. read more...

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