I’ve been mulling over a story I read a couple of days ago about the CEO of a company who wrote an article on Fortune.com where she apologizes to all of the mothers that she used to work with.
In the article, she talks about moments where she never stood up for mothers on her team, and silently slandered many a mother’s work ethic.
Because she began to talk about her new company throughout the remainder of the article.
You see, she became a mother herself. And she created a company that works with mothers and connects them with companies who see the value in working with mothers or women who work from home. Then for over half of this apology article, I’m left reading about her new company.
It felt like one giant pitch to moms to sign up to work with her company, to create a giant job force for her to sell, and it became a big advertisement to companies to hire her product, which is the very mothers she is apologizing to. Personally I think it is great that there is an avenue such as this out there for mothers who are looking for an alternate option. Do I think this was the article to bring it up? No.
When you spend over half of your apology talking about yourself or your company (the company name was mentioned four times in the article, including once in the subtitle, then a fifth time in the author byline), the apology doesn’t carry as much weight.
Working mothers who are discriminated against do deserve an apology in many situations. Not because we can do just as good of a job as the next person, or because we can manage being a mom and a contributing member of society, but because in spite of all of that, many working mothers still put up with a society that will just discount them anyway. Not to leave out coworkers who secretly judge a person based on the fact that one of their identities happens to be mother.
At least 600 – 700 words could have been cut out of this article, and the fact that she co-founded a company could easily be wrapped up in the author byline unless of course this whole article was not a real apology at all and just link bait to get her business out there by selling these mothers that she was horrible to further up the river.
People aren’t that bad… are they?
Apologies should not be self-serving. If you want to apologize, then apologize and leave it at that.
Photo credit to © Sandor Kacso – Fotolia.com