‘You Are Mommy Tracked to the Billionth Degree’
Women are more likely to want to work remotely. But what if it ends up working against them?
When F, a 37-year-old media strategist, started working at a tech company based in Austin in June 2019, she negotiated a hybrid schedule. She would work from home Tuesdays and Thursdays so that she could spend more time throughout the day with her 15-month-old son.
This was pre-Covid 19, and F was the only person on the marketing team at her 30-person company who chose to work from home a few days a week. With a child that young, her priorities were different than those of many of her colleagues, who preferred not just to work together all day but also to socialize together afterwards. “I’m not going to be in an office from 8:30 to 5, and then [go to] happy hours and drinking party boats,” said F, who asked for anonymity to speak openly about her former employer.
In hindsight there were red flags. Her colleagues told her they thought it was “fascinating” she had children, she recalled. “The thing haunting [me] was, they kept saying, ‘We really want an adult in the room,’” she said. That “adult” was supposed to be her.
After a few months, it was clear something was off. She’d come into the office on a Friday and find out about a new direction for the business that everyone else already knew about. When she asked why she hadn’t been told, they’d say, “‘If you were here, you would know,’” F said.