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November 2017

Reflections on Work & Life

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November Blog Post
Brad Harrington, BCCWF Director
Yet another mass shooting in Texas today. In recent months, I find myself more and more frequently worrying about the state of the world. The news these days isn't merely bad, it's terrible. And I'm often left to wonder if the world is, indeed, a friendly place.  More on Huffington Post.

CWF News & Notes 

BCCWF On the Road and In the News
In addition to hosting our   BC Workforce Roundtable  Fall Meeting in Boston, we presented at conferences like NEHRA's 2017 Annual Conference, WorkBeyond Summit 2017, The BC Women's Summit and other speaking engagements with our partners. October was National Work & Family Month,  and we celebrated National Flex Day.  B CCWF research was cited in articles including The Parennials Are Here , and A Millennial's View of the Ideal Workplace.

2017 Kanter Award Winner Honored in Boston
We are very pleased to announce the recipient of this year's Rosabeth Moss Kanter Award for Excellence in Work-Family Research. Congratulations to Stephen Courtright, Richard Gardner, Troy Smith, Brian McCormick, and Amy Colbert for their article, My Family Made Me Do It: A Cross-Domain, Self-Regulatory Perspective on Antecedents to Abusive Supervision. Stephen Courtright accepted the award and presented his research at the BC Workforce Roundtable Meeting in Boston.  Read more from this year's nominees and finalists.

When Bob Chapman, CEO, talks about the impact that organizations have on their people, he gets emotional: "The person you report to at work can be more important to your health than your family doctor. We want to send people home safe, healthy, and fulfilled-all three dimensions." Employers are in a unique position to be a good influence on health and general well-being. After all, working people spend more of their waking time on the job than anywhere else.

In the past 10 years, the share of U.S. adults living without a spouse or partner has climbed to 42%, up from 39% in 2007, when the Census Bureau began collecting detailed data on cohabitation.  Two important demographic trends have influenced this phenomenon. The share of adults who are  married has fallen , while the share  living with a romantic partner  has grown. 

As conventional wisdom goes, the need for paid parental leave is a polarizing an issue in the US. It's the best way to explain why  the US is the only developed nation in the world  that doesn't have it. But according to new research, most Americans actually agree that workers should get paid time off to take care of a new baby.

Even when they're not looking for such expansive benefits, women in the U.S. leave the workforce in droves when they have children - about 43 percent of mothers will leave or take a career break at some point. That so-called "care penalty" hinders women's careers and causes employers to lose valuable staff, said Nancy Jensen, who runs  ReBoot Seattle , a program to help women re-enter the workforce.

The conclusion I've drawn from years of research and experience: Professionally ambitious women really only have two options when it comes to their personal partners - a super-supportive partner or no partner at all. This is the reality of the half-baked transition we are in when it comes to women in the workplace. The 20th century saw the rise of women. The 21st century will see the adaptation (or not) of men to the consequences of that rise. 

Most studies show one reason why knowledge workers with flexible schedules are more productive is because they actually put in longer hours than those with strict schedules. Turns out that flexible work can actually bring out some of the worst in human behavior. In other words, we humans, when left to our own devices, tend to be too flawed in our decision-making prowess to make the most of flexible work.