What Women Want - Workplace Flexibilty
We were recently lucky enough to be introduced to Gina Hadley from The Second Shift at Worn Creative’s F*it event.
Seeing her speak and meeting afterwards reinforced the idea that women should be given the opportunity to grow professionally in every stage of their lives. A woman should not be held back because of her desire to care for family, her husband’s work situation, or for any other obligation.
Flexibility is incredibly important in managing a work-life balance. A linkedin report, highlighted in this Elle article stated that “More women prioritize "flexible working arrangements" over "good remuneration/pay.”
Traditional workplaces have been slow to adopt flexible work policies. However, progress is being made, led by a few companies offering new platforms and arrangements to keep women in the workforce. We appreciate their effort in building innovative work models and highlight a few game-changers below.
Mission: To retain critical female talent in the work force, benefitting women, employers, and their families financially, creatively, and culturally.
What specifically stood out to us is their desire to help women keep current and make money in a flexible setting.
Staying current with skills and technology is one of the most important factors in managing a career. Time off - even a few years - can unfortunately make even a highly skilled individual seemingly less relevant. This makes it harder to re-enter the workforce, let alone advance. Project-based or part-time work allows women to stay on top of changes in their distinctive industries, increase skills, and add to overall work experience.
Inkwell was conceived to create opportunities for the legions of talented parents who are looking for flexible employment, but still want to be challenged, recognized, and rewarded in their careers.
Similar to The Second Shift, they enable candidates to keep their skills fresh. Additionally, they emphasize connecting workers to each other. This adds value because the life of a freelancer/contractor/consultant can be isolating. Connecting to colleagues and peers enhances personal skills and opportunities, and provides mental relief.
One extra cool fact - Inkwell donates 5% of proceeds to nonprofit partners working to promote girls' education initiatives around the world.
Different than the aforementioned brands, R.Riveter is a brand that created portable careers to Military Spouses.
The intricacies and issues with a military lifestyle is not something that is known to the general public, but it hits close to home, as our co-founder Ev is from a military family. In the military - it more common than not, to have a life of constant moving. This nomadic lifestyle comes with many challenges, one of which is how spouses deal with careers. Many cannot sustain jobs or careers, as employers do not want to hire people they know will be leaving soon. If a military spouse is able to find a suitable position, they find themselves having to leave it pretty soon and start the job hunt all over in a new place.
R.Riveter - started by military spouses, makes bags from recycled materials. They developed a model which employs other military spouses - allowing them to take their jobs with them wherever they are.
They just received investment on Shark Tank and we are looking forward to seeing the company grow and evolve.
We first read about Path Forward in Fortune’s article “This Nonprofit Wants To Put Stay-At-Home Moms Back to Work”
It was originally set up as an internal internship program aimed at women who were interested in returning to work after a career break. Now, they operate as a non-profit focused on bringing return to work programs to more partners and companies.
This is incredibly important, as women who take a break and/or over a certain age are at an incredible disadvantage when returning to work. Read about it in “ Over 50, Female and Jobless Even as Others Return to Work.”
It is not only important to talk about creating opportunities for individuals, but to address the fact that it’s beneficial for companies to hire back capable, experienced women who add lot of value to the workplace. We hope this conversation continues to gain momentum.