Saturday, May 10, 2008

CBS Early Show; Flexible employment resources

I felt very fortunate to be on CBS Early Show this morning, and now I am back home in time for Mother's Day.

You can read about the segment and I'll post video as soon as I get it.

I loved the taped piece that led off the discussion of SWAT Moms, which is the concept of hiring mothers for highly-skilled, short-term projects. I knew everyone in the piece and I was so proud of my friends!

When it came time for my studio appearance, the segment was shortened at the last minute to fit the live TV schedule. I did my best to get my points across in the brief time we had to work with.

The web sites I referred to on-air were some of those recommended by Sue Shellenbarger in her Wall Street Journal article:

MomCorps is another well-known staffing firm

And I want to give an additional shout-out to two partnerships that I know and admire:

In the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Triangle, we have staffing firm Balancing Professionals, led by the dynamic duo of Kella Hatcher and Maryanne Perrin. They are fantastic colleagues who have taught me a great deal about these issues.

Nationally, CultureRx provides the expertise and framework to help companies develop ROWE, the "results-only work environment." The idea is that it doesn't matter when or were you get your work done. You can set your own schedule and work process. Goodbye to worrying about putting in "face time" in the office. Your completed work speaks for itself.

CultureRx has created a ROWE Launch Kit for managers, and CultreRx founders Cali Ressler and Jody Thompson have a new book coming out at the end of May: Why Work Sucks and How to Fix It. The title is irreverent but we can count on Cali and Jody to deliver the serious goods as well. I am eager to get my hands on an advance copy and I'll tell you more about the book by the publishing date. I am crossing my fingers that I'll be able to get Jody and Cali as guests on my podcast.

It is important to support these efforts because let's face it, we're still in the pioneering phase of getting flexible employment to be widely offered. Even though the culture is beginning to shift, many flexible arrangements are still seen as special deals, and bosses may even ask the employee to keep the arrangement quiet. Thus, these individual cases may not make the systemic impact we need.

Here's my prediction: as the Baby Boomers retire, their demand for phased retirement will push flexible employment over the tipping point, in a big way. When the bosses decide they want it for themselves, then we'll all get it.

For those of us who are juggling work and family NOW, we can't wait for a demographic wave to sweep us forward. We need to push, pull, negotiate, and speak up. So I am particularly grateful to those firms who are going out on the leading edge to make it happen for us.

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Blogger Cali said...

Amy -

Congrats on a wonderful appearance and on furthering the national conversation around this very important topic.

You certainly got some great messages across!

Cali and Jody

11:49 PM  
Blogger Amy@UWM said...

Congrats on the segment and for continuing to push work/life balance issues in the media. I also predict that once Boomers retire and Gen X-ers come into the highest levels of leadership, we will see a shift in work/life balance attitudes.

10:17 AM  
Blogger Tenakim said...

fascinating! Love the term,SWAT, but what exactly do you do? I am very intrigued, been disappointed by ways to make money too many times, though.

6:12 PM  

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