Creating A World Where We All Win
Every day I wake up, and the primary purpose in my career is to sell the idea that “investing in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is not only good for business, but it’s the right thing to do.” This week, I woke up ten months postpartum with my three-and-a-half-year-old son and ten-month-old daughter. I was tired, I had a headache, and feeling the pressure of leading an organization during a pandemic.
Nonetheless, I got ready real quick. My three-year-old Adam looked at me and said, “mama, you are going to work?” Yes, honey, I am. He said, “again,” and I said yes. ( I have been working 7-days a week) As I walked out, my husband looked at me and says “you didn’t pump yet.”
Trust me, I know. I could feel it, but I had to rush out to an emergency meeting. He responds, “but you’re going to be in pain.” I quietly say, “comes with the role.” The role of being a mother, a leader, a president, a wife, a friend…
As a working mother, you never win. You wake up every day, and you do your best to be your best. Your hormones, priorities, and challenges coupled with continuous judgement are sometimes too much to handle. However, you choose to persist.
Why am I choosing to share such an intimate part of my life’s experience? Because for a living, I speak to industry leaders, HR directors, government, associations and anyone who will listen that we must change our approach. We must take a reflective pause and ask, is this working? Is it fair? And what role do we play in creating a world where we all win.
Every day I challenge companies not to judge women on their reproductive organs. I encourage them to create a climate of inclusion. I advocate for family-friendly policies. I encourage everyone to reflect on their internal biases and the impact it has on diversity, equity and inclusion.
The past twenty months have not been easy. I voluntarily scaled Build a Dream during my maternity leave with Adam, and then I went back to work immediately after having Alayna. Yet, I still have to convince employers that women employees are dedicated, talented and committed. We should not penalize them for their choice to have a family.
My story is not unique, and I can share hundreds more.
Today, as I walked out the door after my son kissed me goodbye, I prayed for a better future.
The little spark I still have inside me believes that Alayna and Adams’ future will look brighter. Help me create a world where all IN, WE WIN.