Seven Work-and-Life Advances I’m Grateful For This Thanksgiving

photo by Andrea Westmoreland

It’s been a tough year, both personally and for the country and for the world. And, to my amazement, it is already drawing to a close. Hanukkah just two weeks away? Is that possible? But before Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Festivus, etc., comes Thanksgiving. So once again this year, in honor of all the turkeys to […]

The Trouble With
Parental Leave

Copyright Eduardo Merille

A few weeks ago, at Working Mother’s annual “WorkLife Congress,” I attended a breakout session that made me think of Adam Pertman. I’d had a conversation with the adoption reformer a few months ago about the status of employer supports for adoption—see my last post for some of what I learned. The breakout session I […]

Employers: Time to Get Real About “Real” Families!


“Most children adopted from abroad have some level of special need, and most adoptions in America are of children from foster care. You have to convince me that bonding and taking care of your baby requires you to have six weeks, but taking care of, say, a sibling group with special needs only requires two. […]

Why Women Still Aren’t Getting to that C-Suite

Irritated woman_opt (1)

If you were to base your understanding of the corporate world on movies and advertising (as it can be tempting to do), you might think women were barreling up the ranks in business faster than you can say “next CEO.” Sadly, for those who can bear to look reality squarely in the eye, it’s clear […]

How My Parents Put the Lie to “Mad Men”

work-family balance in the era of Mad Men

The whole concept of “work-family balance”—or however you choose to phrase it—often feels like a peculiarly modern concern, born of feminism, economic changes and other factors that led to the predominance of two-earner households and/or single parent homes. But of course, this is a strictly middle class view; many families have had to struggle along […]

The Truth in a Discarded Word: When “Balance” Makes Sense

SeesawWithKids_wb_opt (1)

Late last spring, I finally got so crazy-busy that I simply had no time left for blogging. It’s the first major hiatus I’ve taken since I posted my first entry, in 2011. So you KNOW I must have been drowning. In fact, it was work busy-ness that caused the initial overload, but eventually that segued […]

Surfin’ the Work Wide Web


As many of my readers know, one of my areas of expertise is helping companies navigate the thickets of “great place to work list” applications. These applications happen at specific times of the year, with specific due dates, providing me with certain seasons that are busier than Christmas at the North Pole. This is one […]

Why I Stopped Bad-Mouthing “Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day”


This Thursday, April 22nd, will be the fourth Thursday of the month, which means it’s Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day (aka TODAS). Kids will be trooping through workplaces around the country, sometimes hanging out with a parent but more often enjoying a busy agenda of carefully planned, hands-on activities. I used to […]

The Quiet Epidemic That’s Ravaging U.S. Workers

Illustration Courtesy of

One of the most entertaining things I learned at World at Work’s “Future of Work” forum in Nashville a couple weeks ago is that March 31 is now officially national Vacation Commitment Day. Citing an “epidemic of vacation deprivation,” a nonprofit advocacy group called Take Back Your Time has devised the special day to launch […]

Not on This Year’s “Best Companies To Work” For List? Why Not Try for Next Year’s?


A couple weeks ago, Fortune magazine published its annual “100 Best Companies to Work For” list. The list includes lots of names that probably no one is surprised to see—places like Google and Zappos sometimes seem to be in the news as much about their fun workplaces as about their products. It has plenty of […]