A woman removing her glasses to rub the tension from her eyes. The stresses in the workplace can take it's toll on all.

The Battle for Mothers in Business

And the battle for mothers in business continues.  An admin assistant at a security system supplier revealed that she was pregnant after a short time of starting at the company.  She was effectively fired and ended up being awarded £15,000 for discrimination.  So how is it possible that this type of discrimination continues today? 

The hot topics of the moment are centred around well-being, equity and inclusion, but how can we move on to the advanced concerns if we don’t have the basics covered?  There are numerous theories on why this type of discrimination still occurs in the workplace.  This instance serves as a model example of the inevitable when there are a lack of HouseRules.

Preparing for Battle

When those in charge have no knowledge or understanding of the rules, your organisation is in trouble.  Having worked in various support roles, I found the policy, read the policy and pulled out the relevant parts to present to the manager.
Whether or not you have HR on-site or contracted, your management staff need to understand the policies and procedures in place and how they translate into a work environment.  If your managers don’t have the time to be inquisitive, to monitor and enforce the rules, then it’s advisable to provide them with the appropriate support.  

It is not overindulgence. It is taking action to protect the business.  Have a guide to assist your team in staying on track. Allowing others the free reign to implement their version of your purpose can confuse the entire organisation.  And without HouseRules in place, their thoughts became those of the company.

Short on time – tap the button above to hear The Ethical Strategist give an overview. 

The build up to the Battle

Long-winded “why for art thou” language will not encourage those without an avid interest to read and retain the information.  Think about it; your management team are juggling so much.  Referring back to the case, could “Mrs Manager” be slightly peeved after going through the recruitment process, reviewing countless CVs and conducting the interviews, filling in countless paperwork, business cases, and eventually getting all the necessary approvals and signatures?
And throughout that gruelling process, she has had to pick up the slack or apply more pressure on a team.  There would be complaints and not a hint of empathy or sympathy for the manager working through complex processes.  Now that the manager hopes to get back on an even keel, she is told that her unicorn will leave soon.  

The stress of the unknown can affects everyone differently.  It’s not to say it’s right or justified.  It’s to recognise that we are all human and mistakes are made, and emotions can get the better of us.  Adequate support and guidance at this point could have rescued the situation.

If you fail to enlighten your team on the importance of the greater rules and incorporate them in your HouseRules. You are asking for trouble.

The results of a Battle won

There were no winners in this matter because shortly after being fired, the Admin Assistant, who had a history of miscarriages, saw history repeat itself.  Like most battles, the ending was bittersweet and we only get the ending of the “winning” side. 
You would hope that the company puts into place a strategy to educate and support their team (assuming they didn’t have one in place already).  Equally as important are the actions to monitor and enforce the rules of the company.  Consistently.
Smaller businesses tend to use the excuse of money being tight or the fact that they are not working on the scale of corporations to require the essentials.  Even if you don’t believe you can afford the luxury of in-house experts, consideration for the protection of the business reputation and the ultimate bottom line should things go wrong.

Curate an ethical business so that you don't have to feel the sting of the law and the hefty fine.

It’s a sobering wake-up call to those in business who have disregarded policies and procedures as having no real significance to the company. That is the whole ethos behind HouseRules,
  • to support the internal community, valuing, encouraging and empowering each individual to feel a sense of belonging;
  • for policies and procedures to set out the expectations of the business from the get-go whilst remaining legally and regulatory compliant, and;
  • to stay true to what you have said to build trust, confidence and lasting relations.

I am The Ethical Strategist empowering individuals to make their actions count.  No man is an island, and leaders come in many forms, each and everyone has their turn to shine. 

Not one to keep you any longer than necessary, look out for the following Ethical Insight. In the meantime, if you would like to talk more, book a Sip & Chat.

CAS Ltd, The Ethical Strategist, Cas Johnson - implementing a good policy practice will facilitate you enjoying the life you desire

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