Marge Kinda in Charge


Women have made notable gains in managerial occupations, edging out fathers. In 2016, more than one in three lawyers was a woman compared to fewer than 1 in 10 in 1974. But women are still underrepresented in STEM occupations. And moms still hit the ceiling before becoming senior executives. In Brigid Schulte’s fine book “Overwhelmed”, she describes some of the double-standards mothers face in the workplace. Pregnant women are perceived as “less authoritative and more irrational, regardless of their actual performance”. Mothers are often seen as less committed to work than non-mothers. Fathers, meanwhile, are viewed as equally competent as men without children and while significantly more committed to work than moms. As a result, while mothers are often penalized for their family commitments, fathers tend to be “recommended for management training more than men without children.” Researchers describe this phenomenon as a “motherhood penalty” and “fatherhood bonus”.

U.S. Dept. of Labor
The Economist, “What’s Holding Women Back,” 2015.
Overwhelmed, Bridgid Schulte