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4 Ways To Overcome The Motherhood Penalty

Today’s post is all about moms, working moms that is!  Happy Mother’s Day to all of you readers out there who manage to do it all!  Today’s post is written by Kat Krull is the Marketing Manager of Resunate, the world’s only automatic optimized resume tool. 

Women, sometimes whether they decide to have children or not, or often subjected to what is called The Motherhood Penalty. This is the disadvantage at work that results in (the real or perceived idea) that women will be less productive workers because they will take maternity leave, may leave the position once they have a child or will be unable or unwilling to work overtime after having a child.
As a result of The Motherhood Penalty, Women are more likely to make less money, get passed over for promotions, or struggle to return to the workforce after staying home with a child.
Unsurprisingly, men do not appear to suffer from this disadvantage. 
Deciding whether or not to quit your job once you’ve given birth can be a tricky situation. If you do opt to spend time at home with your child, then, when it comes time to re-enter the workforce, many mothers end up feeling penalized.

How Can You Overcome Challenges From The Motherhood Penalty?

Highlight New Skills 

And we’re not just talking about negotiating bedtime and practicing a lot of patience. While these are skills that can be translated to the workplace and should be leveraged on your new resume, there are likely other skills you have learned.
Did you take on any freelance clients while on leave? Learn a new program? Could you take an online certification course to show you have been keeping in touch with your industry? Think long and hard about new skills you have acquired, both inside and outside of your industry, and make sure to highlight them.

Transition Slowly

Look for a job that you can do from home or part-time in order to beef up the experience section in your resume before looking for a full-time gig. You can also add this experience to your resume!
A longer transition period may also make it easier for you and your family to adjust to the changing rhythm of family life.

Optimize Your Resume

Gaps in employment can be difficult to explain on a one- or two-page resume. To take attention away from those gaps, highlight your relevant experience and skills. Make sure to include ALL your experience, such as volunteering, freelancing, temping, or consulting to fill in the gaps.

Prepare for Questions

Get prepared for tough interview questions about your time off by practicing your answers. Don’t feel like you need to explain your reasoning for taking time off to raise your child? Do explain enough so they aren’t left wondering if your time off was for negative reasons, such as forced unemployment from a previous job.

Show You Are Up to Date On Your Industry

It can be tough to get back into the workforce, particularly in a job market that’s competitive. But remember that you bring something to the table that other younger professionals might not — maturity. This is something employers are looking for in job candidates and can certainly work to your advantage on the job hunt.

If you’ve taken time off to raise your child, how did you transition back into the workplace? Do you have any other tips to share about overcoming The Motherhood Penalty? 

Hi, I'm Anna!

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