Although the proportion of women in the workforce is increasing, that is not to say the challenges they need to overcome disappear. As Renata Mihich, country manager, DHL Global Forwarding, Canada, explains, one of these is juggling a career and motherhood. Studies show that for many, taking maternity leave has a negative impact on their career.
Mihich describes that when she was awarded a promotion on her return from maternity leave, it was one of the most meaningful moments in her career.
“It is extremely important to support women who are re-entering the workplace after maternity leave. Many of them are juggling responsibilities on a number of fronts including elevating and advancing their careers. Giving mothers flexible options about working conditions relieves some of that pressure, which in turn creates support for an extremely talented employee pool.
“Giving your employees the possibility to advance because they are the best fit for that promotion, regardless if they have a new baby at home or not, will not only be an investment in that person, but also an investment in the company. Companies that care create an environment to nurture their employees’ needs, encourages success, creativity and dedication. Companies that fail to recognise the value of supporting and retaining their female workforce will not be sustainable in the long-term.
“Pushing for more diversity and gender equality brings new perspectives to the table, which ultimately drives value for our customers. I believe that having more women at the table in general fosters more understanding and collaboration among teams, but also increases productivity and competition. We need to promote women’s success stories both internally and externally if we want to encourage women to join and stay in this sector.
“Representation is powerful because it inspires hope for the future.”