Recently, I read an article by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella about his memories of being taken along to his professor mother’s classes in India when he was a toddler. He wrote, “During my early years, I would accompany my mother everywhere -- to her college classes and as she fulfilled civic duties as the wife of an Indian Administrative Service officer, tasked with administering government services to a district with millions of people.”
He went on to explain:
"It wasn’t until decades later that I could begin to understand the choices my mother had to make that day in the classroom and every other day — between balancing her work and her family, her professional ambitions and her role as wife and mother, and her passions and her routine."
He penned his post on International Women’s Day to argue that he believes women should receive recognition and support in breaking down barriers to success and to support women in STEM.
But perhaps it would have been even more apt to have written his reflections on Take Your Child To Work Day. Seeing his mother at work and playing dual roles clearly made an impact on young Nadella. Maybe taking your son or daughter to work is exactly the kind of thing that will lead to greater gender equality when it comes time for this generation of children to go to work.
Take Your Child To Work Day was started by feminist icon Gloria Steinem and the Ms. Foundation for Women in 1993. In fact, it used be called “Take Our Daughters To Work Day” because it was started to help expose young women to workplaces and new role models. Most employers apparently started calling it “Take Our Daughters and Sons To Work Day” pretty much right off the bat -- for the sake of gender equality. We love that because rarely is it the case that something starts out just for women and then gets expanded to men -- usually it is the other way around.
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