It also seems like a feminist mistake to expect women entrepreneurs to create little utopias instead of running extremely successful businesses. Mayer was attacked recently for her decision not to allow employees to work at home. She is a woman, this line of thinking goes, how could she think women should have to work away outside of their houses, away from their children? But why should Marissa Mayer have some special responsibility to nurture her employees with a cozy, consummately flexible work environment just because she is a woman? Isn’t her responsibility to run a company according to her individual vision? If we want powerful female entrepreneurs shouldn’t we allow them to pursue entrepreneurial power?I am not actually 100% sure that the decision to end "work at home" really hurt woman at Yahoo! (as a class, clearly individual workers of both genders could have had their work lives disrupted) given that men are more likely to work at home than women. Mayer's previous company (Google) tries to limit the number of telecommuters and it is hardly unreasonable that a new CEO would want to draw on successful business models that she has personal experience with.
Now could this policy change have been done more artfully? Sure. But I am amazed by the duration of this discussion in the media and how much insight it is bringing into the whole work at home phenomenon.
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