Professional Development Forum

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  • 1.  Thank you, Josephine Clara Goldmark

    Posted 10-26-2021 11:59
    I have a daily desk calendar called "This Day in Women's History." It is eye-opening to learn about the many things I take for granted as a woman in the United States in 2021. I also like knowing the exact names of the women who blazed the trail ahead of me.

    The other day I learned about Josephine Clara Goldmark, a labor reformer in the early 1900's whose powerful research was persuasive to lawmakers, and was a basis for labor laws regarding child labor, the legal length of the workday, and minimum wage. 

    One of her reports was called Fatigue and Efficiency and showed that too many hours impaired worker performance and diminished overall competence. Her report from 1912 is a great reminder for those of us nearly 100 years later.

    Every recent study I've seen in the news says many of us are working more hours from home during the pandemic. It's just so easy to sit down for a few hours over the weekend, to log on early morning, and/or log off late in the evening.

    But at what cost? I know I tend to make more mistakes when I'm overworked and stressed. Not to mention being a little crabby with my co-workers and not feeling nearly as collaborative as when I set healthy boundaries for myself regarding the number of hours I spend working.

    Thank you, Josephine Clara Goldmark, for the reminder that it's in my own best interest to log off, and stay logged off, at the end of an eight-hour workday.

    How about you, @Maria Mooshil, @Amy Finkelstein, @Colette Martin-Wilde?​​​

    Maria Liccardo

  • 2.  RE: Thank you, Josephine Clara Goldmark

    Posted 10-27-2021 08:58
    Hi, @Maria L!  Thanks for the introduction to an influential, radical woman from history. I hadn't heard of her. And  I'm struck by Ms. Goldmark's name! Joseph is my dad's name and Claire is my mother's name. So, kinda close. :) Second, I'm a morning person, which makes logging on bit earlier than "start time" easy for me since we're working from home. But that also makes logging off at 5 p.m. easy for me too! By the end of the workday, my attention definitely wanders and I know it's time to move on to other things (dinner bell!). But early in the day? I'm at my best and raring to go. So I think I'm pretty good at setting my boundaries regarding work hours. I'll be interested to hear what others say. ​

    Maria Mooshil

  • 3.  RE: Thank you, Josephine Clara Goldmark

    Posted 10-27-2021 09:06
    @Maria Liccardo Thanks for this reminder, though to be honest, I have practiced the discipline of leaving work at work and drawing a line between when I'm on and when I'm off.  I put those guardrails in place decades ago. It was a little risky, but worth it.

    My company had just gone through a management buyout and I was invited to stay on in the critical position​ of "Office Manager" which translates into a lot of key responsibilities:  Facilities management, admin staff management HR policy development, dissemination and monitoring, materials and supplies procurement, telephone system & copy equipment manager, contract management, change manager and vendor relations etc.  No small task.  I was working full time and had 2 children under 6.  On day one, my boss gave me the "We need you 110%" talk, suggesting that a mere 40 hours would be the expected low end. My response to him was, "You have me 150% when I walk in these doors.  I can give that to you because  I have a life outside work that I'm dedicated to and family comes first.  You're going to have to honor that if you want me to do the best for you."  He neither expected nor appreciated the push back and was surprised. We made a pact, honored it and I proceeded to do the job they expected and more.  It was one of the most fun, challenging and  fulfilling jobs I ever had.  

    While WFH has blurred the physical lines between work and home, you have the power to create and enforce boundaries and a reasonable expectation that they will be honored.

    It's great to be reminded of that. Work will always be there.  Other important elements and beings in our lives won't be. It's important to put everything in its right place in the pecking order so everyone - most of all you - get their due.

    Colette Martin-Wilde

  • 4.  RE: Thank you, Josephine Clara Goldmark

    Posted 10-28-2021 16:03
    @Maria Mooshil @Colette Martin-Wilde it's so great to hear that you both ​​have healthy boundaries around work vs. personal hours--very inspiring!

    @Colette Martin-Wilde that is an amazing story about telling your manager exactly how you planned to put in 150%--by remaining focused during an eight-hour work day. Also very inspiring--thanks for sharing!​

    Maria Liccardo