This post isn’t going to go into the working mom vs. stay at home mom debate.
It will, however, go into a more pressing need I’ve noticed:
>Agency culture continues to be fluid and unpredictable in terms of hours and work/life balance (last minute presentation changes, last minute client needs, meeting that popped up in LA tomorrow, etc.). A working mom doesn’t mind the schedule change ups,but when teams are small and there is no backup, this can be exhausting.
>Large brands, especially CPGs, are looking for ways to connect with moms and dads in new ways (i.e. the term du jour ‘content marketing’).
>The majority of creative directors are still men
So what are we left with?
Moms who have children are looking for as much work/life balance as they can. Their noggins are still fresh full of insights, data and productivity- they just do it all in ways that may not mirror the typical agency set up. For example, a working mom may leave the office at 5:30 to get the kids from daycare or relieve the nanny, but I almost guarantee that she can rock that pasta sauce stirring and still think about the presentation she is putting together.
Because as soon as the kids go to sleep at 8 pm, she’s back on her laptop finishing that presentation or email.
Meanwhile, Client X is launching a new product and wants an agency team that includes a mom. Not just ‘any’ mom, but a woman who avidly uses social media, reads mom blogs, has visited Buzzfeed, may hop around HuffPo now and then, understands the technology of Vine and has a hearty following on Instagram and Twitter.
Personally, I know MANY of these women. I know more, but because of the inabilities for the agency life (advertising, media and PR) wasn’t willing to budge in terms of work/life balance, they left and started their own shops.
A Client who has an agency team made up primarily of young 20 something folks who don’t have kids but know people who have kids. Then the few agency moms are spread across multiple clients to provide the tidbit/insight/presence that a full time member should be doing.
No one is saying that every agency should instill daycare (a smart move if you ask me), but recruiting more working moms isn’t just good for women – it’s good for your agency’s bottom line.