Saturday, December 28, 2013

Opting Out

An interview of a global CEO on  mother- daughter conversation inspired me to write this piece today.

The work place in most organisations and the mindsets force women to opt out.
Either of motherhood.
Or of her career.

This pressure is dialled up with our own feelings of guilt and coping with societal pressures as well.
Makes us connect the financial status at home with her choice.
Once the income is enough for a decent life, some of us throw in our business cards and call it quits.
To keep ourselves happy, we start dabbling in our hobbies and feel good that we are still "working".

In the process, we have lost out on half our workforce- of investment in education that would lead to great productivity at work,  balanced decisions in professions, fantastic managerial abilities that comes from within rather than business schools.

Opting out of motherhood is a societal disaster and we have seen this in some nations.

We see a book, an ad, some interviews about how some women, who braved all odds and decided not to opt out and feel inspired.
And then go back to what we are most comfortable doing.

Every time I take a session in a business school and see half the room filed with young girls, I am optimistic.
And then I attend a senior management conference and see the sprinkling and realise just how many simply dropped out.

Of course it calls for some change in work places.
I have written about this in my earlier blogs.

But again and again, I know that the change has to come from within.
Those demons need to be squashed.

We cannot opt out.
We are mothers and we are part of the nation's workforce.
We do both jobs brilliantly.
Both lead to a nation of productivity and excellence.
And maybe, a happier, balanced world.