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"100 Best" companies for women

Five D.C. companies were among 100 who are being highlighted by Working Mother magazine for maintaining workplaces that allow women to keep balance between their work and home lives. For the 25th year, the list of “Working Mother Best 100” companies spotlights companies that “set a new standard for family-friendly policies.” The local companies include:
  • Arnold & Porter
  • Covington & Burling
  • Fannie Mae
  • National Education Association
Congratulations to them and to their very fortunate employees. The news release below, e-mailed to me by Ila Tyagi of The Rosen Group, a publicist for the magazine, explains the list and why the magazine chose to celebrate such companies.
Print out and show this post to your boss, give or her a hard look and then say something like, “How nice it must be to work for a company with such progressive, enlightened leadership. How wonderful that must be for the employees and the bottom line!”

New York, NY (September 14, 2010) — Celebrating its silver anniversary this year, the Working Mother 100 Best Companies initiative has set the bar for forward-thinking, family-friendly workplace policies for a quarter-century. Today, the Working Mother 100 Best Companies offer better benefits than ever before, eclipsing their counterparts nationwide. With 70 percent of mothers working and women outnumbering men in the workplace for the first time in U.S. history working moms have come a long way.

“Twenty-five years ago, we made a bold decision to launch our Best Companies initiative and challenge businesses to address the unique needs of working mothers,” said Carol Evans, President, Working Mother Media. “The immense influx of women into the workforce demanded changes in workplace culture as companies strove to keep working moms’ talent and loyalty. Today, we celebrate our winners’ untiring commitment to their employees through an impressive array of programs.”

While the Working Mother 100 Best Companies continue expanding their benefits, those at companies nationwide° lag. Just 44 percent of American companies offer telecommuting (vs. 100 percent of the 100 Best), 17 percent offer formal mentoring (vs. 95 percent), and 37 percent offer health insurance for part-timers (vs. 100 percent). 49 percent of employers offered flextime last year, down from 54 percent the prior year. In contrast, all of the 100 Best Companies offer paid maternity leave, lactation rooms, flextime, mental health consultations and elder-care resources; and 98 percent offer health screening and wellness programs–particularly significant in a stress-inducing, poor economy.

Improvements in these companies’ offerings to working-family employees include:
THEN: Six weeks of partially-paid maternity leave
NOW: Six to 14 weeks at full pay, with pre-maternity leaves and new-mom phase-back
THEN: Four percent of Best Companies offered paternity leave
NOW: 75 percent of Best Companies offer paternity leave
THEN: Seven Best Companies offered on-site childcare
NOW: 99 Best Companies offer a range of services including backup child-care, sick childcare, before- and after-school care and summer camps for kids
THEN: Stress reduction programs
NOW: Fully-staffed medical centers at 63 percent, fitness centers at 78 percent and exercise classes at 80 percent of Best Companies
“There’s been a dramatic change in America’s mindset,” said Suzanne Riss, Editor in Chief, Working Mother. “In 1986, women didn’t acknowledge the fact that they were a mom at work for fear of being ‘mommy tracked.’ Today, moms have photos of their kids on their desks because companies recognize that moms make high-achieving, loyal and ambitious employees. What’s more, other employee groups – including dads and people with aging parents – have benefited from the policies promoted by the 100 Best.”
The Working Mother 100 Best Companies employ dynamic programs that adeptly help employees in all areas of their lives. Employees who want to learn how to build a nest egg in a cracked economy can benefit from Prudential Financial’s one-on-one budget coaching. Intel supplies employees and their children and grandchildren with homework help via a tutoring hotline. And employees at Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey work with a former stand-up comedian to learn how humor can reduce stress, as part of a five-year program focused on education, exercise and overall well-being.
Profiles of the 100 Best Companies, as well as national comparisons, are in the October issue of 
Working Mother and at workingmother.com/bestcompanies.
*Indicates a Top 10 winning company
־ Indicates a company on the list for all 25 years
  • Abbott
  • Accenture
  • Allstate Insurance Company
  • American Electric Power
  • American Express Company
  • AOL
  • Arnold & Porter LLP
  • AstraZeneca
  • Automatic Data Processing, Inc.
  • Bain & Company, Inc.
  • Bank of America*
  • Baptist Health South Florida
  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina
  • Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceutical USA
  • Bon Secours Richmond Health System
  • Booz Allen Hamilton
  • The Boston Consulting Group, Inc.
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb
  • Bronson Healthcare Group, Inc.
  • Capital One Financial Corporation
  • Carlson Companies
  • Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
  • Cisco
  • Citi
  • Colgate-Palmolive Company
  • Covington & Burling LLP
  • Credit Suisse
  • Dell Inc.
  • Deloitte*
  • Deutsche Bank
  • Diageo North America
  • Discovery Communications*
  • Dow Corning Corporation
  • DuPont
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Ernst & Young*
  • Fannie Mae
  • First Horizon National Corporation
  • First National Bank
  • Freddie Mac
  • Genentech
  • General Electric Company
  • General Mills*
  • Goldman, Sachs & Co.
  • Grant Thornton LLP
  • Hallmark Cards, Inc.
  • HCA Virginia Health System – Richmond Market
  • Hewitt Associates LLC
  • Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey
  • HP
  • IBM Corporation* ־
  • Intel
  • Johnson & Johnson ־
  • Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP
  • Kellogg Company
  • Kraft Foods, Inc.
  • LEGO Systems, Inc.
  • March of Dimes Foundation
  • Marriott International, Inc.
  • MasterCard Worldwide
  • McGladrey
  • The McGraw-Hill Companies
  • McKinsey & Company
  • Merck & Co., Inc.
  • Mercy Health System
  • MetLife, Inc.
  • Microsoft Corporation
  • Moffitt Cancer Center
  • Monsanto Company
  • Morgan Stanley
  • National Education Association
  • New York Life Insurance Company
  • Northern Trust Corporation
  • Northwestern Memorial HealthCare
  • Novo Nordisk Inc.
  • Patagonia, Inc.
  • Pearson Inc.
  • Pfizer Inc.
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • The PNC Financial Services Group
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers*
  • The Principal Financial Group
  • Procter & Gamble
  • Prudential Financial, Inc.
  • sanofi-aventis U.S.
  • SC Johnson
  • Scripps Health
  • Texas Instruments Incorporated
  • TriHealth, A Partnership of Bethesda and Good Samaritan
  • Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.
  • University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics*
  • VCU Health System
  • Verizon Communications Inc.
  • WellPoint, Inc.
  • WellStar Health System*
  • Wyndham Worldwide
  • Yale University
  • Yale-New Haven Hospital
By Avis Thomas-Lester  for the Washington Post

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Working moms redefining success

The traditional model of professional success in corporate America has been based on a “Company Man” archetype popularized in the 1950s, which mainly referred to a white, male, corporate climber with a wife at home.

Fast forward to 2010. Women now make up 51 percent of the total U.S. workforce. Last year, the number of working moms as sole family breadwinners hit a record high. As a result, many working moms are starting to think this outdated career template needs an overhaul.

Lisa Depew, 34, was an application engineer for Intel Corp. when her first son arrived in 2005. She took five months off to be with her son, thanks to family leave and an earned sabbatical, and then proposed working a part-time schedule. She later had another child, and as her kids got older, she requested a three-and-a-half-day schedule and eventually moved to a 40-hour week with Mondays working at home. She is now the technical lead for tools and technologies services in the sales and marketing group at Intel, based in Santa Clara, Calif.

“Could my career have advanced faster? Probably,” said Depew. “But would I have changed anything? No.”
A growing number of working women are defining success on their own terms. While their career trajectories seem atypical, and they’ve made job decisions based on their family something which would have doomed most corporate climbers in the past it works for them.

Tricia Kagerer, 45, negotiated with a Dallas-based construction company to work flexible hours so she could pick up and drop off her kids at day care and school. She is now the vice president of risk management for the firm, C.F. Jordan Construction.

“When they offered me the job, I was clear that my kids come first,” said Kagerer, whose kids are 11 and 14.

Beyond ‘Leave It to Beaver’
Not all working moms are as lucky.

“There’s still a whole class of women that don’t have the luxury of thinking about redefining success. They are working to put food on table,” said Rosalind Hudnell, Intel’s director of Global Diversity & Inclusion.

But, she added, the structure of work is slowly changing because of the influx of women into the workforce and will eventually impact women and men from all socioeconomic levels.

“People are realizing that ‘Leave It to Beaver’ isn’t how everyone is going to live their lives,” she said.

Many new mothers are better educated than they were two decades ago and are increasingly having children at a later age. Today, one in seven babies is born to a mother at least 35 years old.  

Marianne DelPo Kulow, a mother of two, said she had her first child at 40 and a second at 42. She decided to leave a career as a high-powered attorney for something more conducive to raising a family, so she went into academia. She is now a law professor and director of the Women’s Leadership Institute at Bentley University in Waltham, Mass.

“How do you define success?” asked Kulow, 49. “Within the profession I’ve chosen, I made it. I’m respected by my peers, at the top of my salary scale and I’m able to pick my kids up at 3.”

New research suggests that the majority of women in the U.S. are satisfied with both their professional and personal accomplishments. A survey by Kenexa Research Institute looked at whether women thought their futures looked promising, and 62 percent said: “I can meet my career goals and still devote sufficient attention to my family/personal life.” That compares to 59 percent among men who feel that way.

For women in the U.S., “having a fulfilled or satisfied personal life is an aspect of achieving a promising future at an organization,” said Brenda Kowske, research manager and at Kenexa

Today, women are in a keen position to reshape the linear career ladder upward. But one big question remains:

“Are we being pioneers or simply giving in?” asked Pamela Stone, associate professor of sociology at Hunter College and author of “Opting Out: Why Women Really Quit Careers and Head Home.”

If women are just changing their idea of success because they’ve given up fighting a society that deprives working moms of opportunities to advance, then it’s not a good thing, said Stone. However, if working moms are essentially transforming the work dynamic to meet their needs, she said, then that’s progress.

Clearly women have a long way to go when it comes to getting the top seats at U.S. corporations, with women holding only 13.5 percent of the executive officer positions, according to Catalyst. And women still make 77 cents on the dollar to men.

It’s been hotly debated whether this is about bias against women, or their decisions to cut back hours or opt out, or about a system that just hasn’t adapted to the needs of working parents. The U.S. is one of the only industrialized nations without mandatory paid family leave, and good child care options are few and far between.

Changes in the workplace
But the growing power of working moms may alter the landscape once and for all.

“When you get a critical mass of women in any professions, you do get changes,” said William Doherty, professor and director of the Marriage and Family Therapy Program in the department of family social science at the University of Minnesota.

“Women are reshaping the workforce, and I think a cultural change is underway,” he added, pointing to the health care industry. “You have 50 percent or more of the young doctors today are women, and as a result there is much more part-time work available. You don’t have the expectation of 90-hour weeks anymore.”

Rewriting the rules, however, has not been easy.

“We have no clue what it’s going to be like when we become a working mother,” said Susan Wenner Jackson, one of the founders of the website Working Moms Against Guilt, because few women do any pre-planning. “It completely blows your mind and you have to put the pieces back together.”

Many working moms suddenly find themselves making sacrifices, whether at home or in their jobs. But such sacrifices don’t equate to career failures in their eyes.

Kelly McCarthy, an attorney with Sideman & Bancroft in San Francisco and mother to a 1-year old son named Finn, believes she has a successful and fulfilling career.

“I have made it work with a perfect storm of luck, circumstance and planning,” she said.

McCarthy and her husband approach parenting as a partnership, sharing child care and household duties. She chose to work for a smaller law firm that’s more accommodating to her needs instead of a big firm. 
McCarthy and her husband also live in a town near family that can help out.

And take Julie Rocco, 38, and Julie Levine, 40. They were both established engineers and managers at Ford Motor Company before they became moms. Together, they broached the idea of doing a job-share arrangement even though it wasn’t common at their level.

The Julies, as they’re known at Ford, share all job tasks and share all information about their job, which is overseeing the Ford Explorer product program. They have conference calls every night to keep up to date, and both work in the office on Wednesdays so they can connect with each other and their team.

“This is not a free ride. We work very hard,” said Rocco. And Levine added, “We’re both aspiring women who want to keep moving up.”


By Eve Tahmincioglu for msnbc.com


If you are serious about your professional career and want to pass your IT Certification exam in first attempt and don’t want to waste your precious time and money then visit http://www.ComputerTipsnTricks.com/ITcert.htm for Free Practice Exams, Free Study Material / Books etc.

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