No matter how much working moms try to schedule ahead, sometimes (OK, maybe a lot of the time), things just don’t go according to plan. Whether a childcare option falls through, or a partner or spouse is sick, flexibility is key. Of course, that’s always easier when you have an accommodating boss and support system in the workplace.
Thankfully, that was the case for Jeanne Donaghy, the lead customer service strategist of Culture Amp, an employee analytics software company. She works in the company’s New York City office. In a LinkedIn post, Jeanne said that when her regular childcare provider got sick, Jeanne had to decide between missing important face-to-face meetings, or bring her two daughters to work. She chose the latter option.
Jeanne’s team didn’t just support her decision; they encouraged her. “Instead of being shamed, my CEO told me how much joy kids bring to the office, as my daughters were doing what kids do and making a mess,” Jeanne said.
Her daughters looked very entertained in the picture Jeanne posted of them on LinkedIn. “During numerous ‘potty breaks’ with the little one during a working session, my entire team was patient and understanding,” she said.
Some of Jeanne’s colleagues even watched her kids while she worked. “As always, the entire NY team chipped in to welcome, entertain, and even babysit while I took an important customer call,” Jeanne said.
We wish every work environment accommodated the inevitable twists and turns of working mom life.
“To say I was grateful barely scratches the surface,” Jeanne said. “In moments when it feels there is not enough time, that the decision between family or work is an impossible choice, I feel so privileged to work for a company that doesn’t make me choose.” She gave a special shoutout to her boss, Didier Elzinga, and several coworkers, particularly customer service coach Melvin Arquero.
In a comment on the post, Melvin said, “I love having your girls in the office and having them (secretly) join my meetings! Seeing you push the little one in a stroller with a laptop in one hand is honestly so inspiring. You truly are a #supermom.”
Stroller and laptop? That sounds like a lot to juggle. But of course, juggling is working moms do every day—whether or not their kids are at the office too!