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03/19/2015

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Hi Jacque,
It's not about the perk, it's about the philosophy. The first companies to implement something like this will usually have a well thought out philosophy. As you mention they also have great benefits when having a child so employees have a choice. You could say if they didn't have a "freezing" perk they would be encouraging employees to have kids during normal age range. One could look at this one sided approach just as cynically

It's the companies that follow with a "me too" approach that may be of bigger concern. They may not take a balanced approach or have an overall philosophy.

As far as your vasectomy example, I don't think anyone is suggesting pay level or age requirements before women un-freeze their eggs. I'm also not sure how a vasectomy perk would play in the media. It would likely play into the male dominated culture story line (reality). The goal with the perks they are implementing should be about attracting an under represented population.

Whatever is valued by your workers is appropriate to consider as a perk. Or is the employer sending a chilling message? No evidence so far about who initiated this idea, whether requested by ees or imposed by management. It might be construed (and sued) as pressure to defer childbearing in order to continue working without "inconvenient" interruptions.

I know this is all men commenting but at the same time they are offering rich new child perks to off set the "chilling" message.

There are conflicting opinions about this offering --- from women. I tried to present both viewpoints.

As far as the vasectomies ---- it was tongue in cheek. Don't think would ever be offered.

Where are the comments from the women? How do you feel about it?

So...What would THAT Total Reward Statement look like?????

Hmmm. . . good question Dan. For egg freezing maybe the value could be $$$ lost on the job if the woman gets pregnant ---- time away from job, etc. Sort of like using "value" for benefits instead of actual cost to employee.

For vasectomy? Well ---- I'll let you men decide on that one!

Where are the women?

I think it is a sad commentary on how we view work and family in this country. If we had a support network AND realized that success can occur without 24/7 focus on work, all would be better off. Why do you think so many women are opting out of "corporate" life and starting their own business? They are tired of playing by the rules of 1950 that still exist today. They want to own their own lives.

Katherine and other women --- do you see/think that with Gen Y beginning to dominate the workforce with Boomers retiring --- that the gender issue will subside? I've heard that younger men (and therefore management) don't view women the same way.

I am all for it. I wish I had an option to postpone having children until I have reached the peak of my career, whatever/whenever that maybe. Sadly, I don't work for Facebook or related companies which offers this perk.

Wanting children, not wanting children, delaying children are great options to offer. I don't see why this have to be a judgement issue where we judge people for making a choice and companies for giving people the option to make the choice. Now, if they had given an option of freeze eggs and take away the generous maternity perks, I would find it suspicious. This is merely opening another door for women to live their life as they see fit. Why not?

Hi Jules and thanks for your comment. Apparently companies are sensitive to criticism. Seven years ago the head of an egg-freezing clinic reached out to some large companies and asked if they would consider it for their female employees.

She says: “We got a lot of pushback from them, saying, ‘Well, we don’t want to seem Machiavellian, that we’re paying to freeze a woman’s eggs so she just keeps working harder". So companies have been sensitive to potential criticism.

Perhaps if companies with great maternity benefits (like Facebook) offer egg freezing it will be viewed as OK because either choice offers a rich benefit.

But companies with poor maternity benefits? They may get a different reaction. Poor benefits if you get pregnant -- rich benefit if you freeze your eggs and keep working. I can see how this might be interpreted differently.

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