I’m guilty. I’ve taken babies to business meetings.
My second was only a few weeks old when I acquired Women’s Agenda. So he’d frequently take trips with me to various corporate offices in Sydney CBD, even taking the odd interstate day-trip to Melbourne and Brisbane.
Or occasionally, and more simply, he was welcomed into the houses of contributors and colleagues.
It’s just what you have to do when you have a newborn, especially if you’re running a business. Or going for a new job. Or catching up with your employer or a client. I still remember meeting our editor Georgie Dent back in 2013, just prior to her taking over my role and getting a text twenty minutes earlier: “I need to bring my baby, Is that OK?”
It’s just what you do because women have babies. And women also have jobs.
(And of course it was 100% OK.)
So when entrepreneur Lorraine Murphy posted an email exchange on LinkedIn featuring the acronym ‘WTF’ regarding her need to bring a pram to a business meeting, I was more than a little disappointed.
But I take heart in what happened next. See below. – Angela Priestley
Nicky Champ from Business Chicks has the story.
Lorraine Murphy is the founder of the Remarkables Group and a Business Chicks Premium member. She’s the formidable social media gun who recognised back in 2012 the power influencers have on what we buy. She created an agency where brands and influencers could work together to amplify their reach. In short, she creates brand magic. If you want people to talk about your product, you talk to Lorraine.
Right now, she’s in London for business meetings with her three-month-old baby Lexi in tow. But one of her scheduled meetings didn’t go ahead as planned when an email about accomodating her newborn baby was accidentally sent to her by mistake.
“Someone I was supposed to be meeting with next week accidentally emailed me instead of their assistant this morning. If women can’t support other women then the future for working parents looks pretty dire,” Lorraine posted on her LinkedIn page.
Here’s the email trail:
She describes feeling like she’d been “punched the guts” while reading the email.
We know the pregnancy and parental discrimination statistics are dire, but it’s especially crushing when it’s a female limiting another women’s career path or ambitions.
Lorraine has been a loyal supporter and member of our community for years, and we know first hand that she is deeply passionate and committed to helping other women start their own businesses. She gives back and she pays it forward.
The upshot is that this incident has sparked a conversation about flexibility and how we view new mothers in the workplace. Within days, 50,000 people had viewed Lorraine’s LinkedIn post and she was flooded with comments and messages of support.
After hearing about ‘Emailgate,’ the Founder & Global Executive Creative Director of One Green Bean, Kat Thomas, invited Lorraine and Lexi to meet for coffee in London.
Now that’s what we call women supporting other women.
The above is an edited version of a piece that first appeared on Business Chicks and is published here with permission. You can read the original here.