Thursday, November 16, 2017

Review: A Uterus is a Feature Not a Bug by Sarah Lacy

A Uterus is a Feature Not a Bug
by Sarah Lacy

Publisher: Harper
Pages: 320
Format: book
Buy the Book: HarperCollins

Goodreads:  Working mothers aren’t a liability. They are assets you—and every manager and executive—want in your company, in your investment portfolio, and in your corner.

There is copious academic research showing the benefits of working mothers on families and the benefits to companies who give women longer and more flexible parental leave. There are even findings that demonstrate women with multiple children actually perform better at work than those with none or one.

Yet despite this concrete proof that working mothers are a lucrative asset, they still face the "Maternal Wall"—widespread unconscious bias about their abilities, contributions, and commitment. Nearly eighty percent of women are less likely to be hired if they have children—and are half as likely to be promoted. Mothers earn an average $11,000 less in salary and are held to higher punctuality and performance standards. Forty percent of Silicon Valley women said they felt the need to speak less about their family to be taken more seriously. Many have been told that having a second child would cost them a promotion.

Fortunately, this prejudice is slowly giving way to new attitudes, thanks to more women starting their own businesses, and companies like Netflix, Facebook, Apple, and Google implementing more parent-friendly policies. But the most important barrier to change isn’t about men. Women must rethink the way they see themselves after giving birth. As entrepreneur Sarah Lacy makes clear in this cogent, persuasive analysis and clarion cry, the strongest, most lucrative, and most ambitious time of a woman’s career may easily be after she sees a plus sign on a pregnancy test.

Kritters Thoughts:  I read very little non fiction these days, so when I saw a pitch for this book, I had to read it.  Although I am working woman and not a working mom, I still thought I could get some interesting information from this read and I wasn't disappointed.

Yes, she does focus on working moms and how important it is for companies to make sure working moms feel like they have the space to take maternity leave and to come back and do both a home life and a work life.  It is on us to make sure they know they have the space to do what they need to do, but also keep expectations that they be productive in the hours they are at work.  On the flip side, as a woman who doesn't have a child at home needing my time, I would love the same respect that my home time is just as valuable for my husband and dogs and I kind of wish she had hit on that for just a moment.  I wish she had highlighted that work life balance should be an expectation for all working women - moms or not - and even set those expectations for men also.  

I loved the parts where she highlighted other countries and what they have done to achieve a little more equality and their numbers are better than ours, but they still feel the need to fight for even more equality.  It seems like this conversation will never die, but maybe it will become a little less fierce if the US can make some strides in equality.  

I would encourage people who work to read this one and really take your time with it.  It has a lot of interesting points and this may be a book that I go back to a few times to give me the fire to fight for equality and justice.  

Rating: definitely a good read, but can't read two in a row

Ebook 2017 Challenge: 56 out of 50

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from TLC Book Tours.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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