Although women can do just about everything that a man can do, women have the unique distinction of being able to get pregnant. However, in today’s society there are many who feel like having a baby is problematic when it comes to maintaining your professional career. This is especially true for women in high-tech jobs who almost certainly already feel inferior to the men who work alongside them. Getting pregnant and missing months of work before and after the birth of their child seems like career suicide to most. However, that is certainly not the case, especially when you take the right approach to getting pregnant from the get-go.
To begin with, it is of the utmost importance to show your value to your employer well before you get pregnant in the first place. For most women, this is something that they are already implicitly doing on a daily basis. However, it is important to take note of this because a lot of times, people will only work harder right before it comes time for the company’s annual review, in hopes that a few weeks of hard work will overshadow their many months of less-than-stellar work and get them a promotion. Although the implications of such an approach are slightly different when it comes to getting pregnant, the same general principle still applies. You should not be working hard only when you decide you want to get pregnant in the near future. Make sure you are maximizing your value to the company for as long as possible (i.e. as soon as you start working for them in the first place).
Now once you take care of this first step, the rest is actually quite easy. You see, when a company has a valuable employee, they are much more willing to accommodate to them in various ways. More commonly this can mean when they can come in and leave the office for example, but in the case of women who want to get pregnant, being a valuable asset to the company will ensure that you get no pushback from your employer on your decision. Sure many companies have strictly enforced guidelines for providing maternity leave, but if you aren’t on totally good terms with your manager when you take your maternity leave, there may be some negative consequences down the road (especially regarding future compensation – i.e. pay raises and promotions).
If you are a hardworking and valuable employee, the only thing you really need to do is to be totally upfront about the pregnancy. In other words, as soon as you confirm that you are pregnant, let your manager know. After that, just keep an open line of communication with him or her regarding when you are expecting to take your leave and all of other details regarding who will cover for you while you are off.
Wanting to become a mother is something that almost every woman has at least considered at some point in their life. If your decision to have a baby happens to coincide with your professional career, making sure you take the right steps in the lead up to your maternity leave will go a long way in ensuring that your professional career is not negatively affected in any way, allowing you to come back to work after your pregnancy as if nothing has changed!