An important but sometimes overlooked issue in addressing the challenges women face in terms of career development and advancement is the role that men play in the family and on the homefront. While corporate efforts to support women through mentoring, job rotation, leadership training and accelerated development programs are important, the existence of a shared caregiving model at home is perhaps even more important when it comes to helping women advance.
Research conducted by the Boston College Center for Work & Family over the last decade on working fathers has shown the evolution of men’s attitudes and aspirations for a more equitable distribution of family responsibilities.
At the same time however, men’s aspirations toward shared caregiving does not always reflect reality on the ground. In spite of fathers’ good intentions, mothers still do more than twice as much in terms of domestic tasks and caregiving. Working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic has brought attention to this issue in a very visceral way:
- Men are taking on (slightly) more household chores during pandemic – Boston Globe, 5/21/20
- Nearly Half of Men Say They Do Most of the Home Schooling. 3 Percent of Women Agree – NY Times, 5/6/20
This fact may represent the greatest single obstacle to women’s advancement. This imbalance has often been referred to not as the glass ceiling, but rather the “maternal wall.”
Join CFA Society Boston this Monday, June 8th at 1:00 pm as we welcome Professor Brad Harrington, Executive Director of the BC Center for Work & Family for a review of this research on today’s fathers and a discussion of how understanding this is important to women and men in both their professional and personal lives.
Register here at the CFA Boston web site to receive the link for Monday’s webinar, which is open to all. We look forward to a lively discussion!