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The Dignity of Work: Transforming the One-Size-Fits-All Workhouse into a Custom-Fit Workplace

August 31, 2010
The inefficiency of slavery is now obvious, but to George Washington it came as a revelation. While on a visit to Philadelphia, Washington noticed that free men there could do in “two or three days what would employ [his slaves] a month or more.” His explanation—that slaves had no chance “to establish a good name [and so were] too regardless of a bad one”—was that of a practical man concerned with the bottom line, not that of a moralizer. Sadly for us, our first president did not draw the full implications of his insight. Had he done so, he might have used his immense prestige to end the...

Why “Fit” Matters and Makes a Big, Meaningful Difference

August 31, 2010
In 1995, I graduated from business school and began working for Families and Work Institute developing and implementing work+life strategies. I often joke that I’m probably the first, and last, student to walk the halls of Columbia Business School publicly professing the desire to become a work+life strategy consultant. But my previous experience as a line manager at a bank had opened my eyes to an irrefutable truth: it’s a strategic imperative to help employees flexibly manage the way work fits into their lives day-to-day and at major career and personal transitions. It’s not just a nice...

Custom-Fit Workplace Blog Carnival: Discussion on Best Practices that are a Win-Win for Employers and Employees

August 31, 2010
**Scroll down to the comments section to see the conversation from our 9/2/2010 evening blog chat. And of course, you can still join the conversation by asking questions and typing your comments in the comment box. Hit "Submit Comment" and join our Q&A!** Have you been there? Frustrated that it's nearly impossible to excel at work (and home!) because the structure of your workplace doesn't fit your life? Too many of us are banging our heads against the wall these days. Despite the workplace crunch that many of us face, there's good news. An increasing body of research shows that flexible...
joan's picture

Straight Talk about Motherhood and Work

August 23, 2010
Recently I was asked a terrific question by an Australian (and soon to be an American) woman at a training for women bloggers thinking about running for office. BlogHer and the White House Project had put together a great program. I talked about my experience in international work as an Ambassador which gave me a window into how mothers fared in other countries. My questioner said she had lived in a number of countries which raised a big question in her mind. “Why,” she asked, “do American women – compared with those in many other countries – put up with such Draconian policies that make it...
Linda Tarr-Whelan's picture

Admiring the High Performance Workplace

August 17, 2010
I just got back from a Dr. Pepper plant in Texas where managers told me about people laughing at work a lot more since they began the transition to becoming a High Performance Work Place (HPWP). As a person who has been writing a book about work practices that are good for both business and the individuals working for them, I was impressed. Manufacturing is not known for its fun factor. I visited a plant in which workers feel respected. Workers in the plant are trusted to do what is best for their company as they go about their work and even share responsibility for hiring new people. This is...
joan's picture

Profitable: A Flexible Workplace for ALL Workers

August 17, 2010
REGISTER NOW FOR SEPTEMBER 9th (12:30- 1:30 ET) CLASP AUDIO CALL: “ Profitable: A Flexible Workplace for ALL Workers.” Join a lively discussion with Joan Blades (co-founder of MomsRising.org and MoveOn.org) , Jody Heymann (founding director of the Institute for Health and Social Policy at McGill and the Project on Global Working Families at Harvard), and Joan Williams (founding director of the Center for WorkLife Law at Hastings College of the Law, University of California) that will zero in on employers that have developed strategies to provide workplace flexibility to all their workers –...
Jodie Levin-Epstein's picture

5 Things Employers Should Know about Breastfeeding

August 11, 2010
Under health care reform, all employers are required by law to accommodate the needs of breastfeeding employees. But ignorance about breastfeeding still prevails in the workplace. Here are the basics that every employer should know. Please send it to your boss, your HR director, and anyone who is in a position to support women breastfeeding when they return to work.
Katrina Alcorn's picture

Does the Labor Market Punish (M)Others?

August 10, 2010
The labor market punishes mothers and others who make lane changes during the course of their work lives.
Nanette Fondas's picture

Even in a Recession, Flex Makes (Dollars and) Sense

August 6, 2010
Even in a recession, flex-time, job-sharing, compressed schedules, and telecommuting increase employee productivity and reduce costs. The net effect? A boost to the bottom line.
Nanette Fondas's picture

Screw Work Life Balance: We Need Work Life Policy! Join the Movement at BlogHer

August 2, 2010
For over two years, The Four Hour Work Week has been a national bestseller. Why? Because most of us resent feeling tethered to our jobs, and we know we could still do great work even if we had the ability to control our schedules and factor family needs into our day. But workers are completely on their own to figure it out. Out of 168 nations , 163 have some form of paid maternity leave, leaving the United States in the company of Lesotho, Papua New Guinea and Swaziland. Nice. We are grown ups who have home and work demands; what's wrong here? At the BlogHer Conference in NYC on August 7 at 1...

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