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A post on LinkedIn is shedding light on how powerful it is when company leaders are supportive of working parents.
Rose Sheldon is an Illinois-based mother of two and the Allstate Director of Learning. On the networking site, she recalled how years ago she was afraid to tell a new boss she had a hard stop at 5 p.m., so she could make it on time for her then-newborn daughter’s daycare pickup. She was “nervous and teary-eyed” because her last supervisor was “harsh” about the arrangement.
To her surprise, the new boss smiled and replied, “No worries, make it 4:30 if you need to. I know they charge you if you’re late to daycare pickup, and I wouldn’t want that to happen.”
Rose was thankful “to have someone that understood,” and from that moment on, was “dedicated to working hard for that boss” to show her gratitude.
Not only that, the two openly spoke about working-parent struggles. And they celebrated when she shared the news that she was pregnant again, despite the fact that the due date wasn’t ideal in relation to the timing of a big project.
Now a leader at her company, Rose is intent on paying it forward. “There is never a need to apologize to me for being a working mom or dad. I openly share my struggles and triumphs as a hashtag #workingmom so that my team knows they are in a safe space,” she wrote.
In the same post, Rose linked to an open letter by another working mom, which included an explanation for why she leaves at 5 p.m. every day and a shoutout to compassionate managers. Obviously, Rose drew inspiration from the letter.
In the comments section, several praised the mom for continuing to carry on her manager’s goodwill. “I love that your former boss modeled the way, that you excelled under this arrangement, and that you model the way for your employees,” wrote one user.
“It’s definitely helpful when you have leadership who understands the struggles of being a working parent and even so, sometimes it can still be difficult. However, I can completely agree that when we have the support we need, it just gives us a bigger desire to work hard,” added another.
Rose’s story is proof that when parents feel supported at work, they take notice. Not only will they be loyal employees, they can make the workplace better for other parents who join their company.