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Where Have All the Women Gone?

Inspired by the NBC News coverage of recent report findings published by Deloitte, in “Women @ Work: A global outlook”.


With viewership of Hulu’s most-watched original title, The Handmaid’s Tale, achieving record numbers following its season 4 premier nearly a month ago, it should come as no surprise that women are seeking an escape from their own overwhelming workloads –at home and on the job— via entertainment.  And yet, that ‘escape’ to a dystopian television series based on Atwood’s 1985 prophetic novel, that so closely mirrors the current state-of-affairs for women in the workforce, seems to be more cathartic than entertaining; the show and its themes giving voice to the ‘perfect storm’ awaiting women following the COVID-19 pandemic.  And while America is still a far cry from the fictional Gilead, the disappearance of women from the workforce is nothing short of distressing.


The Findings

Deloitte’s survey of over 5,000 women from 10 countries from November of 2020 to March of 2021, confirmed what any working mother has already endured throughout the pandemic: an increase in responsibilities at work and at home, taking a devastating toll on mental health and leading to burn out.

  • 8 in 10 women surveyed said their workloads had increased since the pandemic began, but so did their responsibilities at home.
  • Job satisfaction dropped by 29 points over the pandemic, “with women considering opting out of their workplaces –or the workforce entirely— in troublingly large numbers.”
  • More than half of the women surveyed are less optimistic about their careers than they were before the pandemic.
  • Overall, 57 percent of women plan to leave their workplaces in the next two years or less, while 21 percent say they will eave sooner than that, all citing lack of work-life balance.
  • Nearly 1 in 4 women are considering leaving the workforce altogether.

The Cost

The contribution of the female labor market over the past 125 years has been a major factor in America’s prosperity.  In fact, a recent study “estimates that increasing the female participation rate [in the American workforce] to that of men would raise our gross domestic product by 5 percent.”

However, women face significant obstacles in achieving their professional goals, made even more insurmountable by the pandemic.

  • The gap in earnings between women and men is still significant.
  • Women continue to be underrepresented in certain industries and occupations.
  • Too many women struggle to combine aspirations for work and family.
  • Further advancement has been hampered by barriers to equal opportunity and workplace rules and norms that fail to support a reasonable work-life balance.

According to Janet Yellen, a Distinguished Fellow in Residence with the Economic Studies Program at the Brookings Institution, “If these obstacles persist, we will squander the potential of many of our citizens and incur a substantial loss to the productive capacity of our economy at a time when the aging of the population and weak productivity growth are already weighing on economic growth.”

The Next Step

We cannot continue the devastating path we are on; the pandemic has wiped out the job gains women made over the past decade. Women now have an unemployment rate in the double digits, for the first time since data began being reported by gender in 1948, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Women’s unemployment in April of 2020 was nearly three points higher than men’s according to Labor Department rates reported by The Washington Post.

Kimberly Churches, CEO of the American Association of University Women believes we should focus our attention on bills and legislation that are focused on: pay equity, practices in the workplace on flexibility and on access to care—like the Paycheck Fairness Act and the FAMILY Act.

Melinda Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation believes we should focus our attention on the caregiving crisis, beginning with a national paid family and medical leave policy.  “We’re the only industrialized nation without one [a paid family and medical leave policy].  We also need federal action to stabilize the teetering childcare industry and to direct additional resources to long-term-care services and supports so that ill and aging adults have options besides relying on a mother or a daughter.”

Rachel Thomas, co-founder and CEO of LeanIn.org believes that remote work, as long as it is embraced correctly, will be key in maintaining the presence of women in the workforce while legislation and cultural norms catch up to the disproportionate caregiving responsibilities falling on the shoulders of women, one of the major factors in nearly 2.2 million women completely dropping out of the workforce.


While the US is a far cry from Gilead, our workforce may not be.  With women leaving reluctantly to be “stuck at home mom’s”, employers must take action to preserve an essential asset to our economy.  And the solutions don’t require a revolution; nearly a quarter of the women surveyed by Deloitte say, “better child care/caregiving support, short-term sabbaticals and better resources to support their mental health are the top three things companies can do to keep them.”  It’s time to get American women back to work, with the proper supports to stay there.

Spotlight

Friday Spotlight: Michele Martin, Finance

Michele graduated with a BA from UCSB and quickly started her ascent up the corporate ladder. She quickly moved from accounting to marketing to managing top client accounts and developing software solutions to manage her own sales and support team. For the last 14 years of her career she specialized in business process automation, project management, application development, training, and database management for one of the largest providers of commercial real estate financing solutions. As the Assistant VP of Information Technology, it was normal, and fun, to work 50+ hours a week, be tethered to a phone and solve anything at any time. Fun UNTIL, she became a mom. While she truly enjoyed working and contributing to the family financially, she needed flexibility to schedule completely around her children. In search of that flexibility, her entrepreneurial spirit led her to start two businesses that demanded time and financial resources, but never delivered a decent return. After nearly 20 years in the corporate world it seemed impossible to replace a six figure income with the flexibility she so desperately desired.

The decision to join Moms Making Six Figures came after unplanned, life changing events happened in her life. Given her prior attempts to replace her six figure income she doubted this could deliver on the promise of flexibility and financial security. However, with hard work and consistency, she is happy to report that just a few years into this career change the income potential has become a reality. Thankful that she took that leap to try another career change, she now has the flexibility and income that seemed so elusive together. She still works hard, but but on her terms. Now she is there for school field trips, important school events, regular adventures with her kids, and she can even workout and enjoy life. She is proud of what she has accomplished these last few years, but credits working with a phenomenal team to achieve their ongoing goals together. It is that camaraderie where Michele finds her greatest joy being able to help, coach and mentor others transition focus from corporate back home to their families.

To contact Michele email her at michele@momsmakingsixfigures.com

Spotlight

Home with your kids while earning an income? It’s possible.

Four years ago this month, the most amazing little boy entered our world and forever changed our lives.  I was a middle school science teacher and loved being in the classroom; it truly was my passion!  I always thought I’d be a working mom, but after Bryce was born, I struggled with going back to work because I didn’t want to miss anything in his life.  I eventually decided to go back because I had worked so hard for my degrees and teaching credential not to use them, plus I just couldn’t see myself not contributing financially to our family.  I told myself over and over that dropping Bryce off at home care would get easier, that I was so lucky to have holidays and summers off with him, but it just never got easier.  So, my husband and I decided that I’d finish off that semester, and then stay home with him.  I knew it was the best decision we could make for our family, but I really struggled with the idea of forfeiting my income stream and relying solely upon my husband.

I tried so many things over the last four years to generate income working from home.  I had my own accessory business, a direct sales company, plus so many other things, and none was ever as successful as I’d hoped or needed it to be.  One day, I was looking at work from home pages on Facebook, determined to find a way to create a meaningful income, no matter what it took.  That’s when I found my amazing business partner, Dana and her webpage, on which she lists different businesses that you can do from home.

I was on Dana’s sight one day and she had posted about an amazing opportunity she had found and had recently personally just gotten started.  I was very hesitant because I had just been burned by a direct sales company and I promised myself I was never doing that again.  But something about her post that day piqued my interest, so I checked out MomsMakingSixFigures.com to make sure this was a legitimate home-based business.  I absolutely loved what I saw and was very intrigued!  After speaking with Dana, I felt very comfortable and confident with the company.  I had finally found something I could completely see fitting in with my family, since I was already focused on eliminating toxins in our home to protect the health of my children and husband.  The products are truly amazing!.

Moms Making Six Figures has completely changed our lives in such a short period of time!  At first, my husband and I talked about how life changing just $500 would be for us.  But in just 3 months, I’ve achieved Director 3 and earned $3,568.29!  And because I know it’s real, I see such an amazing future with this company (though it still blows my mind)!  I know I was very hesitant at first because of my past experiences, but I honestly believe God put this company before me at the perfect time.  I’m confident that I can succeed in this business and so I’m simply not afraid to put in the time and effort it takes, while still enjoying the flexibility to be with my boys and family.    And what I love best of all is that through this business, not only am I helping out my family financially, but I’m able to help other women achieve the same goals, and it’s very rewarding!

 

Press

Bay Leaves: January 2016

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Ladies with strong ties to Whitefish Bay are now bringing their business to the area for our local moms to benefit from. The founder and owner of Momsmakingsixfigures.com is Heidi Bartolotta, who started the company in 2008 when her two daughters were both under the age of five, and the family was struggling after her husbands job had been down-sized. She was at a crossroads deciding if she should work outside the home, or if she stayed at home, what could she do to keep the family afloat. Fast-forward 8 years later and Heidi now was a team of women making six-figures thanks to the company she started.

One of these women is Jennifer Becker, who spends her summers in Whitefish Bay because her husband, Kurt Becker, hails from the area. Jennifer was looking for something that would allow her to work from home, but still give her that desired salary she had worked so hard to achieve in her corporate position. “Coming from the corporate arena with lots of work-related travel definitely did not give me the ability to make my two daughters my priority. Now I volunteer in the classroom, chaperone field trips, and still have income – the best of both worlds,” said Jennifer.

On how the company operates Heidi says, “Mothers today face so many pressures and questions, and the pressure to make the best decision weighs heavily on each of us. That’s where Momsmakingsizefigures.com can come in; we have a business model that has helped many women find their personal balance-point. Some women work 10 hours per week and others work 40, but each one gets to decide the amount of time that works for her and more importantly, when during each day she puts in that time.”

The flexibility of time was the biggest highlight for Jennifer to make the switch from the corporate world to the at-home lifestyle offered by Momsmakingsixfigures.com. “This is not a “get rich quick” thing, simply real women working together to create real income from their efforts. I would love to help you down this journey I have taken that has afforded me the ability to be at home with my girls,” said Jennifer.

If you or anyone you know are looking for something more, something different, Momsmakingsixfigures.com might be the answer you are seeking. “We developed a business model that requires no overhead, no inventory, and no selling,” said Heidi. Simply visit www.momsmakingsixfigures.com and submit a request for more information and a mentor, likely local Jennifer Becker, will contact you and help you get started on your new business.

Press

Zip Code Magazine: October 2015

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When I started Momsmakingsixfigures.com in 2008, we had two little girls under the age of five and I was struggling. My challenge was trying to find the right mix of time and finances amidst all the demands that come with motherhood. Should I work outside of the home or decide to stay home, and what would that mean for my family’s financial situation? Mothers today face so many pressures and questions, and the pressure to make the best decision weighs heavily on each of us. That’s where Momsmakingsixfigures can come in; we have a business model that has helped many women find their personal balance-point. Some women work 10 hours per week, some work 40, but each one gets to decide the amount of time that works for her and, more importantly, when during each day she puts in that time. This is not a “get rich quick” thing, simply real women working together to create real income from real effort. If you or anyone you know are looking for something more, something different, we might be what you are looking for.

Press

Marin Living: July 2015

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The reality of raising a family in the Bay Area (or anywhere in California for that matter) is that it truly does require two incomes. Tamie Scranton knew that she needed an income, but she also wanted to be a mom who was present and available for her three children.

After the downturn in the economy, she was no longer able to count on her income from the mortgage business. She knew she needed to find an alternative means of creating additional income, but she wondered whether that could be possible while maintaining control over her time.

Scranton was introduced to Moms Making Six Figures in 2011 by her cousin, Angie Gange. Gange shared that she had found a way to create a six figure income and be at home for her three boys. Scranton quickly saw the potential of MM6F. She saw that she really could have both. “I am the mother of three amazing teenagers! I know that may surprise you… not that I have teenagers, but that I would describe them as amazing! Here’s the thing… I want them to stay that way,” Scranton said.

Scranton and Gange weren’t alone. Heidi Bartolotta founded Moms Making Six Figures in December 2009 with that very goal in mind; having time for her children without sacrificing the ability to generate significant income.

Previously, Bartolotta had worked as a pharmaceutical sales representative, but after having her two daughters, she no longer wanted to work late and travel; she wanted to be home. Bartolotta said her team is comprised of women from very different education levels, backgrounds and work-styles.

Scranton says: “Honestly, finding MM6F has been such a blessing. My husband’s career is very demanding and our children are very athletic, so it was important that I be able to adjust my schedule around their activities. And being able to support them and let them follow their passions has paid off! We have two children who are college athletes!”

Looking to expand the team, Moms Making Six Figures encourages interested women to visit momsmakingsixfigures.com or call (415)  200-1291.