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IACM 2023

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Motherhood and Self-Advocacy At Work

Women are less likely than men to initiate and successfully perform self-advocating workplace negotiations. Motherhood partly explains this difference. Mothers, more than fathers, trade off job scope, compensation and role advancement, for work-family balance. Accordingly, they are viewed as less entitled to lucrative opportunities and compensation, and negotiate them less often. However, the "bright side" of motherhood in this context was overlooked. For example, motherhood involves psychological growth, and advocacy on behalf on one's family. It may thus enhance both work performance and negotiation. The diverse contributions of motherhood to employee negotiations have not been studied, nor were mothers' own perceptions in this context. We present a new mixed-methods research project into mothers' perceptions of the relationships between motherhood, work and self-advocating negotiations. We will share findings from its first stage, interviews with Israeli employed mothers, and outline additional planned stages. We hope to encourage inter-cultural collaboration in this project.

Noa Nelson
The Academic College of Tel-aviv - Jaffa

Anat Herbst-Debby
Bar-ilan University


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