TEDx Video: Changing the Conversation About Women and Work

by Katrina on May 27, 2014

The talk I gave at TEDx Monterey in April is now available online! “Maxed Out: Changing the Conversation About Women and Work.”

If you like it, please share it.

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Monica

Enjoyed your talk! On policy makers leaning in to parenting, there are proposed uniform federal guidance from office of management and budget to allow federal grants to pay for “temporary dependent care costs” during travel “if the entity has a consistent policy paying these costs.” This is a weak start at having child care expenditures charged to a grant. Just thought others may be interested. These rules are due to come out in December 2014. Like the Sweden scenario, it is sort of like turning down free money to not take advantage of it. However, it is unlikely to be implemented right away as it requires that the policy be consistent across all funding sources or organization wide. However it is a start.

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Katrina

I hadn’t heard of that, Monica, but what a great idea. I recently had a (male) client offer to pay for my babysitter to watch my kids while I went on a company retreat. I didn’t end up doing it, but thought the gesture was really classy.

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jumi mama

Katrina, you are my hero! The TED talk was wonderful. If you’d ever like to hire a school psychologist (part-time and with a flexible schedule, of course!), please let me know. I’ve really enjoyed your book, blog, and and now TED presentation.

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Katrina

Thank you, Jumi Mama! When I’m ready to start my own school, I’ll let you know. 😉

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Michele Thomas

Katrina…been following you for a while (found your site when I searched for help on how to manage it all!) Love this talk and glad to see your ideas get more exposure. I am sharing across my networks and I wish you luck with your book! Thanks for taking the time to synthesize these ideas for all of us struggling to make it all work!

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Katrina

Ha! Unfortunately, I don’t have a silver bullet answer to the “how to manage it all” question. (Anyone who says they do is lying. This is hard. Period.) I really appreciate the shares. Thank you!

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Liz McGrory

Hi Katrina! Read your book and heard your interview on Working Motherhood podcast. I’ve been waiting to see your TedX talk and it was beautiful and motivational. I’ve shared it with everyone!

I love your perspective on the phrase Lean In. I agree with your view on entrepreneurship (it’s not easy), but until things change it’s worth brainstorming about. All one needs is to do is give it some thought and place fear aside. Just dream.

I became maxed out and burnt out but came out the other side happy, got a new career, opened a business and had another baby. All because I decided not to settle. You said it perfectly, I leaned into my life.

Thank you for your voice and your message! Looking forward to see what else you have in store!

(p.s. Congrats on a TedX talk! Such a HUGE accomplishment.)

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Katrina

Thank you, Liz! Yup–it’s not the answer for everyone (entrepreneurship) but it’s made a huge difference in my life. Congrats to you for not settling!

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Melanie Holmes

You did a really great job! I’m sharing it…

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Cassie Hewitt

Katrina, I seriously feel like you are the one voice in the wilderness that, hearing it, makes me feel at once relieved and hopeful. Things do need to change, and more rapidly than they seem to be–for the health and wellbeing of all concerned. The other day I had the image of myself as the “center” of the wheel of our family–and if I am broken and sick, where does that leave us?

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Susana

Hi Katrina! I loved your Ted talk and I’ll be sharing it. I like your perspective of “lean in” and agree with you that changes must come also from those with the power to make decisions with impact.
Some months ago I went from working full time to part time to have more time for my family, but I had such a hostile work environment towards me that I maxed out, had a depression, and left one day in the middle of the afternoon intending to never return. I stayed home on sick leave to recover and to figure out what to do next, while my superior tried to fire me. HR offered me a department transfer to a team with a good work environment and other working moms, but with the condition that I had to return to the full time.
So I ended up staying home sick for only 6 weeks and accepted the transfer, now I’m doing a completely different job than the one I always did, my hard earned part time lasted only for 3 months, and I’m looking for another job because I don’t like this one.
So yeah, it’s hard, but we have to push for changes to happen, I’ll always keep pushing.

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Katrina

What a terrible choice: the toxic part-time job or the less toxic full-time job. Good luck finding something that’s a better fit, Susana. I know it’s out there for you! (By the way, I hope it’s OK I removed your last name on your comment to protect your privacy. I can put it back if you want.)

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Alicia

What a powerful and honest talk. Thank you! I work as an attorney in the world of “biglaw,” which has not caught up to the idea of creative scheduling. As the billable hour rules the day, those who prefer efficiency and family time do not earn bonuses or enjoy the same job security as those who churn out the hours. I very much hope the model will change one day. With my first child now 7 months old though, I’m not sure I will wait it out. Why would I lean in to an organization built on such an antiquated model?

I also went through a very rough patch involving depression. I returned to work with only HR knowing why I had gone MIA for a bit. Of course, that was almost worse, as it was tough to explain why my “health problems” had turned a previously responsive and effective young associate into one who wasn’t holding it together very well. Thankfully I got the help I needed before our baby was born. I am unwilling to go down that road again, and to the extent possible, I want to craft my own practice that is conducive to being the mom that my daughter needs (and the wife, daughter, friend, etc. to other important people).

Looking forward to hearing more from you.

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Joan

Thanks for your talk. I am writing from Australia and even though there are differences between what we need here to what you need in the US there are important overlaps. I certainly agree that society needs to ‘lean in’ to support families. I Australia we have a program called Baby Makes 3 (you may have it over there, not sure) anyhow this is a program that is designed to work in the early years after the birth of an infant and an important part of it is to work with families towards – sharing the care (between couples) breaking down the gendered roles. You can see more about this here: http://www.wchs.org.au/services/groups/baby-makes-3

There is a throw away line – it takes a village to raise a child – but here as in the US (I’m sure) there are few support structures (particularly in the early years after the birth) . I would like to see this change.

The birth of an infant is an event of social and cultural significance and the Humanities have much to offer. I have set up an internet site by way of a touchstone – to show just how much there is out there to draw both insight and critique.

Best, Joan G

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35Mommy

I just found your blog yesterday (I realize I’m a bit late to the party!) and have been greedily consuming it during every free moment since then. This TED talked has resonated with me in the most profound way. You have literally articulated, in a beautiful and direct way, everything I have been feeling. I have already begun sharing it with my similarly “maxed out” friends.

Thank you for sharing your story. And thank you for being a voice.

I am at a true crossroads in my life (in all honesty, I suspect that I am *this close* to my own breaking point), and this talk had been the first I’ve found that represents those of us who truly do want to “lean in” to ALL facets of our lives.

Your blog and TED talk have provided me some clarity and, perhaps even more importantly, the realization that I’m not the only one feeling this way.

Thank you.

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