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There is a stereotype that working mothers cannot work as hard as single or lacking children women simply due to the fact that they have more to do. Being a mother I can fully comprehend the never-ending to-do list that goes hand-in-hand with having children. From waking up to soothe nightmares to making sure mouths get fed with hearty cereal, to off to day-care for them and work for you, then beginning the night-time routine complete with a well balanced meal that you make yourself, and an exhausting tuck-in routine when the day care let the kids sleep a little longer. Even typing it all makes me crave a nice nap.
I think back to a time when motherhood seemed so far off—being an undergrad. If I really put myself into younger me’s shoes again I can remember being absolutely just as busy. It’s just that mother and wife busy is different than single lady busy because with mother/wife busy you are being responsible for other people with every single one of your actions. Everything you do is either for your children or your husband. Don’t get me wrong; when you’re single you’re constantly doing things for other people as well. Doing favors for your friends, running errands for your mother, lending a helping hand to your neighbor, staying late for work; all because everyone assumes “Well, Sheila doesn’t have a family I’m sure she’s not busy.”
Often working mothers get an excuse along with their attached stereotype.
Though they are labeled as the ‘busy mothers that may not be able to attend every work function’ they are also excused from said work functions. Single women on the other hand are expected to be at every single scheduled function because how could they possibly have something better to do, dangit!
That all being said, companies need to remember that everyone has their outside stuff to take care of. Whether a mother, single lady, or busy man, every employee has a life outside the office with relationships and obligations.
I’ve always lived by the rule that to get good productivity from your employees you need to keep them happy (as long as they are keeping the company happy too). If they have their allotted time to be with their family and friends outside the office they will be fully present and productive inside the office. Treat your employees how you’d want a boss to treat you.