Career & Business

Working Mothers Are More Likely To Raise More Successful Daughters And More Caring Sons – Harvard Study

busy african businesswoman with baby girl working in office

busy african businesswoman with baby girl working in office

working mum

Waking up very early and spending many hours of your day in traffic, at work and away from home makes many mothers feel guilty. That is time most will prefer to be around their growing kids. The guilt never ends!

But this guilt is being dented by a major study by Kathleen McGinn and her colleagues at Harvard Business School which claims that working mothers are more likely to raise successful daughters and caring, empathetic sons.

The study’s definition of a working mother was based on this one question: “Did your mother ever work for pay, after you were born and before you were 14?”

Some of their findings:
  • Men with mothers who worked outside the home are just as likely to hold supervisory positions in their adult life as those with stay-at-home moms. Women with mothers who worked outside the home, however, are more likely to supervise others at work.
  • Being raised by a mother who worked outside the home had no effect on a man’s adult income, but women raised by working mothers had a higher income than their peers whose mothers stayed home full-time.
  • Men whose mothers had worked outside the home at any point were more likely to contribute to household chores and the care of family members.
  • Women raised by a working mother spent more time, on average, with their children than those raised by stay-at-home mothers.

Kathleen McGinn says:

“It didn’t matter to us if she worked for a few months one year, or worked 60 hours per week during your whole childhood. We weren’t interested in whether your mom was an intense professional, but rather whether you had a role model who showed you that women work both inside and outside the home. We wanted to see how that played out.”

See the entire report here.

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