The two most common responses I get when I tell people I take my baby to work are:
This post is my answer to the first response. Taking your baby to work not only benefits you and your baby, it benefits your employer too. Here’s how.
Having a baby doesn’t mean a woman loses her professional skills. Many women hold key positions in organisations and can be difficult to replace. Not only that, companies may not want to replace them! Why replace employees when you can retain them!
Recruiting staff is a costly exercise. Not only is there the expense of advertising a position and paying an additional salary, but a huge amount of time goes into recruiting. Reading applications, interviewing, training and down time while learning all take time and cost money. The US Parenting in the Workplace Institute estimates that replacement costs of one employee can be up to 60% of their annual salary.
I returned to work within weeks of my daughter’s birth and I can say without a doubt that I wouldn’t have done so if I couldn’t take her with me. The first weeks and months of a baby’s life are crucial for bonding and forming an attachment with his or her parents. Given the choice, most parents will not forsake this crucial time.
Running a successful business is about more than making a good profit. It’s also about building a culture, preferably one with a broader purpose and mission. Babies at work policies remind us that staff are human and that they have lives outside of the office. Companies who are flexible and give a little to their employees are more likely to see the goodwill returned.
Who doesn’t love a baby! Even if my colleagues aren’t directly benefiting from me taking my daughter to work, they are part of the flexible and supportive culture. Taking my daughter to work helps to foster a sense of morale and teamwork. My colleagues help me with my daughter when I need a hand and I help them where I can too. All of my colleagues have said that they love having my daughter in the office. One colleague even says that her presence helps her to feel calm!