So much talk about the new Yahoo CEO getting the job and then immediately announcing her pregnancy. Personally, I don’t think it matters one bit. Yeah, I’m not a mom and I have no idea what it involves, but still…any woman who is given that kind of opportunity should take it. And why should she let being a mother stop her from realizing her career dreams? Kudos to Yahoo for recognizing that working mothers can be just as capable as working fathers! If a man were in contention for the CEO job and he (and his wife) were expecting a child, no one would blink. Yet soon-to-be mothers are expected to renounce their careers and stay at home to raise the baby. So sexist and wrong!
I was listening to NPR’s Forum debating this topic and was appalled by what people (especially women) had to say. Several women called in to say that a new mother can barely hold down any job outside the home, let alone a CEO position. Well speak for your average non-ambitious self. Don’t apply your lazy work ethic to the first female hired at Google! I’m looking forward to her proving all these naysayers wrong.
Someone else commented, “Why have a child if you can’t be a mother and spend time with your child?” Are you friggin kidding me? Can I virtually slap this person? So being a mother means staying at home and being with your kid 24/7? I’m sorry, but in this day and age, most women work. Yes, it may be by necessity, but it also gives women a purpose. A career = a purpose. My mother worked full-time while she was raising 2 kids. Did I feel neglected because my mother wasn’t a stay-at-home mom? Quite the opposite. In fact, I’m extremely proud of the fact that my mom had a career. My mom ran a tight ship, raised 2 kids well, contributed financially, and had a productive career. When I was having trouble in my accounting classes in grad school, who did I turn to? My mom! How many people can say that their parents helped them out during grad school!
The debate around an expectant CEO reminds me of the time when I was interviewing for a consultant position out of college with KPMG in San Jose. The last round of interviews was with the hiring manager and partner. She said she knew I was qualified, but kept wondering how I would commute from the East Bay all the way to San Jose. I wanted to scream, what does it matter? Hire me if I’m qualified and then let me figure out the logistics once I have the job. I could have certainly moved to San Jose or gotten an apartment there. In my mind, all that should matter were my qualifications. That’s exactly what’s going on with the Yahoo hire. They hired who was qualified and now she will have to figure out how to deal with the challenges.
Cmon people. It’s called LIFE.