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Welcome to my musings on pop culture and parenting. I am the Pop Mama and this is a safe place to steal away from your screaming child and get your fix on what's up with Beyonce and great poop stain remover tips.

Friday, March 15, 2013

BusinesswoMom

In light of the big hubbub that surrounded Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer's decision to ban telecommuting at her company for the time being, I got to thinking about my own work and what it means to be a "businesswoman" today.  It is my opinion that Marissa Mayer and her decisions were unfairly scrutinized because she is a woman.  Would people be this huffy if someone like A.G. Lafley, former CEO of P&G had decided that P&G wasn't competing and he needed people to show up at the office in order to turn the place around?  Now, P&G isn't hurting like Yahoo!, but what if it was, would a male CEO be challenged like Ms. Mayer was?  I say, if this is what needs to be done temporarily to get back on track, people need to suck it up and realize that they are still getting a paycheck...they now just have to show up at the office like most of the rest of America.  Would Oprah be this scrutinized?  What about this decision and possibly Marissa Mayer is everyone so offended about?

I think about the Yahoo! stuff in conjunction with my past jobs and besides a day here and there, I was not permitted to work from home and I actually felt that in the positions I held, I needed to show up in order to contribute appropriately.  There is something to be said for face-time.

My own "businesswoman" transformation has been in progress since losing a job nine months ago.  Over this proverbial gestational timeline, I started my own businesses (3 to be exact) and well, it has been one hell of a ride.  But, you know what, even with the stress that comes from working for yourself and not having that guaranteed paycheck every two weeks, I TOTALLY LOVE IT.  First, I love my clients.  Second, I love the work.  Third, I love the freedom.  There is nothing like not having to anticipate a performance review (which you know is BS anyway, but you still have to go through the exercise) and working with good people, on your own schedule -- for me, it just clicks.  The wins are that much sweeter and conversely, the stress / losses that much more painful.

With all of the responsibility it brings and the fact that my schedule allows me to spend some days with the boys, I am not just a "Businesswoman," I am a "BusinesswoMom."  This was exemplified a week or so ago when I had the boys home and a work call came through.  I shouldn't have answered it, but I did and of course, chaos ensued.  I tried to disappear into the office, which is gated off, but Cameron figured out a way around the barrier and Henry followed.  Next thing I knew I had Cameron pushing all of the buttons on my printer and Henry was precariously trying to come down the stairs on his own...and the caller was rambling on.  I finally had to say, "excuse me, can you hold on?" and put him on mute, throw Henry in his crib and take Cameron up to his room for a few minutes so that I could hide in my bathroom and finish the call.  It was STRESSFUL and it was totally my fault -- I should have let it go to voicemail.

Anyway, nothing was lost, but it got me thinking.  Because mothering never ends and working for yourself is a constant cycle, I feel like I am teetering on a balance beam trying to do all of it well -- or well enough.  My business partner, who is also a mom, was talking to me about some work while driving to drop off her daughter's forgotten sports equipment at school.  As a mom and a business person, you just do what you have to do.  That being said, I love what I do and for me it works.  I have friends who work full-time and friends who stay at home with the wee ones -- and all of it is hard.  The key is just finding something that works for you and your family and then working really really hard to maintain it.


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