Today is International Women’s Day, a holiday that originated as a way of recognizing working women and promoting fair and safe working conditions. Many women across the globe face the most basic issues with respect to the conditions in which they work. In the US, we are lucky to have made great strides in this area, most recently with the passing of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009. However, we still have a way to go to create the type of work environment that will provide the best conditions under women can achieve their career objectives. We’ve heard a lot of discussion recently about the role of telework in the workplace – particularly whether it supports or prevents collaboration and innovation. One of the other themes that comes up in these discussions is whether people (most often, although not exclusively, women) with young children require this benefit to address childcare needs. How does Workplace Flexibility help women to address these needs? It provides two principal benefits. It makes it possible for them to arrange their schedules around the requirements of school and other activities, and it helps them to use their time more productively, avoiding the wasted hours of a long commute to the office. Need to drop the kids off at daycare? Want to spend your time performing research, writing a report, or on a teleconference with a client – and not on the beltway stuck in traffic? Then workplace flexibility works for you. As we recognize the contribution of women around the world in the workplace, we should acknowledge that while workplace flexibility is a non-gender issue, it particularly benefits women.
Check out what is happening today – and take a moment to consider how this important strategy for helping all of us achieve a better balance in our lives relates to the objectives of all women for better working and living conditions: