A Major Blow to Work at Home Parents

Marissa Mayer A Major Blow to Work at Home Parents37-Year old CEO of Yahoo, Marissa Mayer, is married to venture capitalist Zack Bogue whom she married in 2009.   With only a few months in at the helm Yahoo CEO ordered and delivered a memo to all work from home employees to get their tush into an office.

You can read the memo here.

This brand spanking new mother of 1 has a net worth of $300 million and can certainly afford to hire all the help most of us only dream about.  

Having flexible working arrangements which provides work-life balance for many is clearly not something she will ever have to worry about. 

One can only speculate the real reason why she made this decision.  A decision that will likely win her numerous accolades in the “attaboy club”  but with working parents and especially working moms we feel betrayed. Nice Job Marissa. Now many of us lie in wonder if other (tech) companies will follow suit.  Hopefully not.

Certainly many will see this as hypocritical as one source indicated she has made claims to prioritize her faith and family before her job.   It’s like comparing apples and oranges and it’s clear that Marissa Mayer is 100% disconnected from the average working middle class american family. This is almost as intriguing as Facebook’s COO Sandberg who not so long ago claimed to stop working post 5 pm.   I didn’t buy that one either.   Either case, you can read more about that hogwash here.
 
Time will tell whether this proves to be advantageous to the company but one thing is for certain….  this did not make me a fan.  
 

Comments

  1. I really saw that as a slap in the face, being a new mom and all. And yes like you said, she’s got all the hired help she needs. This really was not a good move on her part.

    • Couldn’t agree any more and she likely has other reasons that we don’t know about. Either case, there is likely tremendous impact to many families and this is what concerns me most.

  2. I could not agree more. I think she has no idea what it is like for the average working family. And being in this position of being both a woman and a mother in a powerful and highly visible position, it would have been nice to see her using this as an opportunity to support working parents and help change the way we look at parenthood and work in this country. Instead, like Heather said, I think it was just a slap in the face to working parents.

    • Hi Bev and thanks for writing in – I am thinking that this would have been a great opportunity for her to bring more visibility to the challenges we face as working mothers. Most of us, don’t have the privilege of a day care right next to our office.

  3. Happy SITS DAY!
    I have no idea what would posses someone to make such a huge and immediate structural change to a large corporation (seing as how I’ve never been a part of one) but to upend the worlds of “work-from-home-ers” like that is just plain unjust. As a work from home mom, who did the work in the world thing before, my lifestyle is completely dependent on this way of life. I’m shocked. Great post!

    • Thank you, glad you enjoyed the post. I too was shocked, why I woke up at 4 AM to write the piece. you can go on youtube to see even more on this topic. Tons of news media picked up this piece!

  4. That’s too bad! A Mom, herself, Marissa should definitely know that hardship of working outside home when you have kids to take care of. Thank you for sharing this. Stopping by from SITS. Enjoy your day! 🙂

    • Hi Vinma, I have to admit that I do feel working from home with young babies in the house might prove way too distracting. But now that my kids are older, and in school, I think it makes more sense. I am very open and honest with my employer in that I do not work a ‘conventional 9-5’ I may be on line 6 am to 8 am then off from 8-9 am to get them on the bus. Same would hold true in the afternoon hours.

  5. I am interested to see how it plays out. Personally, I think its a shame. She has no idea what the average working family deals with. I wonder what will happen when her child is older and has a lot more needs and wants. For many of us, working at home is the only way we can meet the needs of our family as well. Right now I am consulting and working for myself, but I can tell you in the past when I was working from home for another company,, I worked more hours than I ever would have in an office (and yes, was more efficient too).

    • hi Michelle, gosh do I agree – I work more hours on days I am working from home. I start earlier and end later and may take some time in-between but the net/net is more than an 8 hour work day, that’s for sure!

  6. It’s really sad that she chose to go down this path.. She could have really made some strides in helping those working from home. There have been numerous studies that prove that there are major benefits to having employees who telecommute. You would think that a tech company would want to be on top of the changing workforce, but apparently, not this lady. I wonder if she’d be willing to part with some of that $300 million to help her employees pay for childcare?

  7. Yeah, I’m not a fan either. I think it was her insecurity as a woman in a high level career. In order to prove she could do the job as well as any man, she had to prove that the job came before family. In other words, she had to publicly try to suck away all the footing we women have gained over the last few decades. I hope she gets over that insecurity soon and comes to her senses. A well-treated work force will move mountains for a great boss. The others, not so much.

    • Yahoo claims this is not any type of industry standard and that this is what was needed for them right now. While I do understand this perspective … she might have considered how woman in general would perceive such a move and likely did not expect such a large backlash. That being said, her financial success does not depend on what we think – it depends on the company performance…. Something to think about.

  8. As long as our society practices inequality in pay and opportunities, there will be people who succeed any way they can. When my father died in 1968, some men came to the house and my mom had to sell her inherited securities because women couldn’t own securities since they were too emotional and could crash the marked. Teachers in my school district were paid by their gender and marital status. A married man made the most, then a single man, then a married woman, and low person on the pay grade was a single woman. Thanks for the reminder of what this woman chose to do and how publicly she did it.

  9. WOW, I can’t even…wow. I am a teacher and love working. When budget cuts got rid of my job, I hated being at home, I need to be out and working. That does not take away from the fact that some mothers need or want to stay home, or need to work at home because daycare is FLIPPING expensive.

    As a working mother, she should be ashamed of herself. Most often working moms paychecks go right to daycare! Moms need to support each other not break each other down.

    HAPPY SITS DAY

    • hi Karen, was this the first you heard of this? be sure to check out YouTube as the media went crazy on this topic. I agree that we should be supportive of one another though might she argue we do not support her to be successful? I find it interesting that many woman have issues with the Marissa Mayer decision and likewise many have issues with Sheryl Sandbergs new book “Lean In’. Why I made the mention…

  10. I’m sure she will never have to deal with things most normal mothers have to deal with. Hopefully she will be brought down to earth one day. I sure know I need the flexibility. Daycare is crazy expensive.

  11. Hmmm. I hadn’t heard this one. I have to say, I’m not a fan of a lot she has had to say since taking her new position. It’s apparent that at the very least she is completely dissociated from the average working mom.

    { stopping by from SITS }

    • this was my initial thought as well! I mentioned earlier that her success was not predicated on what any of us felt and likely the decision was made a result of what the company needed to do. Either case, I feel she would be terribly naïve not to expect woman to have serious issues on this matter – as it resonates home with so many of us!

  12. Hormones, new Mom hormones….LOL oh brother! Sad for those of us that REALLY see that value of working from home!

  13. Me either! Happy SITS day.

  14. It still continues to blow my mind that she did this… ugh. Nice job highlighting the important stuff about it!! Happy SITS day!!!

  15. Such a shame when someone takes a step backward! I agree completely disconnected and it will be interesting to see what develops now that she is a new mom. Enjoyed finding your blog – I used to be in M & A years ago! Happy SITS Day!

    • hi Raquel – I found M&A the most interesting of work, did you feel the same. What a way to see the inner workings of a company! Glad you find the blog and hope you will find a need to subscribe via email. If you had a chance to check out the Today Show video post you will see that I mentioned the same thing – I felt she took us (women) backwards. The clip is on my YouTube page and also on the home page of girliemom.com

    • hi Raquel – I found M&A the most interesting of work, did you feel the same? What a way to see the inner workings of a company! Glad you find the blog and hope you will find a need to subscribe via email. If you had a chance to check out the Today Show video post you will see that I mentioned the same thing – I felt she took us (women) backwards. The clip is on my YouTube page and also on the home page of girliemom.com

  16. Until I retired I never had the opportunity to work at home. Some jobs seem to lend themselves to it however. Wonder if some of the recent revelations regarding online privacy (not) had any weight in he decision?

    • Hi Lydia, the media later reported that she discovered many work from home employees were not connecting into the VPN. This, to me, lends itself to be a management problem – not a work from home issue…

  17. i REMEMBER READING ABOUT THIS BACK WHEN IT HAPPENED. i DO UNDERSTAND THAT IT IS REALLY TOUGH TO HAVE YOUR SITUATION CHANGED WITH NO NOTICE. i CAN ALSO UNDERSTAND THAT IF A COMPANY ISN’T MAKING THE MONEY IT NEEDS TO THRIVE, CHANGES MUST HAPPEN AND SOMETIMES THAT MEANS HARD DECISIONS MUST BE MADE OR ELSE THERE WILL NOT BE A COMPANY FOR THOSE PEOPLE TO WORK AT FOR THE LONG TERM. i CAN SEE BOTH SIDES.

    • hi Kimber, good point – and I also can see both sides. However, I feel strongly the problem Yahoo! had was that of a management issue – not a work from home issue. I understand they needed to do what they needed to do to have quick and immediate results however. I still don’t feel this will win her any fans.

  18. Lately, I’ve been telecommuting once a week – and I get more done (and more calmly) when I’m working from home! Congrats on the TV exposure!

  19. Good points! As long as you’re meeting your goals/getting work done, what difference does it make where you work. It’s like she’s throwing other working moms under the bus. Stopping by from SITS.

    • I agree, I telecommute at least one day a week myself and while I don’t work a conventional 9-5 during those days – I never ever miss a deadline and I am 100% available to colleagues and managers at all times.

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