It is time to start a discussion about menopause work


Executive summary

Menopause is often associated with critical career stage. This usually occurs at the age of 45 and 55-this is also the age bracket during the period, the women most likely to move to senior leadership positions. Since the menopause typically lasts seven to 14 years, millions of postmenopausal women into management and senior leadership roles at the same time, experience mild to severe symptoms, such as depression, anxiety, sleep deprivation and cognitive disorders. If we want to continue to push for the number of women in leadership positions and maintain their valuable contribution to the company’s bottom line, we need to be more open about what is menopause and how it affects individuals and organizations.

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Menopause is rarely a topic of open discussion in the workplace, despite the fact that nearly half of the world population has experienced or will experience this biological transition, which marks a woman’s menstrual cycle and fertility. According to a study from a community endocrine Sciences, a startling one-quarter of women experience severe menopausal systems.

Menopause is often associated with critical career stage. This usually occurs at the age of 45 and 55-this is also the age bracket during the period, the women most likely to move to senior leadership positions(technical 53. 46-year-old is a CEO). Since the menopause typically lasts seven to 14 years, millions of postmenopausal women into management and senior leadership roles at the same time, experience mild to severe symptoms, such as depression, anxiety, sleep deprivation and cognitive disorders. A recent shining ferry the analysis found that women accounted for only about 25% of C-Suite positions. If we want to continue to push for the number of women in leadership positions and maintain their valuable contribution to the company’s bottom line, I think, we need to be more open about what is menopause and how it affects individuals and organizations.

Some research suggests that workplace age discrimination also played a part in exclusion of menopausal symptoms, from the corporate health policy. Company can be wary of hiring or accommodating older employees health needs. “We find(older women)species a one-off or edge—so it doesn’t surprise me that something that affects older women in particular will not just an discomfort, but a non-Concern,”explained Chris Bobel, associate Professor of gender studies at Boston the University of Massachusetts.

Like many woman, I instinctively disguise my symptoms, when menopause started for me. This is a sharp difference from the time I was pregnant—during that time, I don’t think twice about the recognition of oblivion, and fatigue. Men and women laugh knowingly and supportively in my anecdote. But menopause is different. I won’t reveal the reason, despite getting lost(even with a GPS),late for an important meeting, double and triple scheduled calendar slot, loss of flight, and can’t even remember what someone said to me only a few minutes ago.

When my symptoms began, I believe, at the age of 48, I had early onset Alzheimer’s disease. Too afraid to discuss my difficulties with anyone at work, I excuse for my forgetfulness, and support from one to enhance the career role. How could I take more of a challenge, I always forget key details about my project? When my doctor diagnosed menopause, it is a relief and a surprise.

Other women I’ve talked to about this experience have learned difficult, you can manage menopause symptoms and work. “Moderation of the grade in front of 200 industry experts, there should be a career. This is a disaster, complained:”Sandala(not her real name), a 46-year-old biotechnology Vice President. “These years of confusion, self-doubt and severe anxiety, Almost Killed My whole career,”Anne MIA(also disguise), the 51-year-old technology Executive, told me.

In Anne MIA’s case, her symptoms were so severe that more than two years of the destruction of the 360-degree feedback and deteriorating as a result of her dismissal. Today, she works as a diversity and inclusion consultant for organizations who accommodate a wide range of women’s health issues. With a twist of irony, her former employer is now engaged, Annie, MIA as a consultant. She’s happy and healthy than ever before.

In retrospect, Anne, MIA hope she had been more brave and speak out about her need of support. Any taboo to lose power when someone with the authority address it openly. We are learning to discuss race, gender and generational differences more openly in the work and we need to put menopause the agenda.

What employers can do? According to my experience, it began to speak. If you are the leader going through the menopause, try to normalize the challenge, therefore, other women may feel the right to speak in the future. Just say something like,”I’m going through menopause, and I always forget things!” Others say This Is this is good to talk. Conversation costs nothing, but get big rewards.

It also requires education. There is a lot of mystery and misinformation about this stage of life, and just collect some basic facts from credible medical sources is a good start.

Managers can work to bring this issue into the daylight by focusing on their employees ‘ well-being, menopause is one of the many health issues that can contribute to stress and burnout. While women and men in your team about how the possible method of accommodation, the strategies like flexible work schedule, option to work from home, or to provide the company information session. Through the active leadership support, an organization can begin to realize benefits in productivity, work culture, and bottom line, in the post-menopausal transition is to solve a specific, work-related concerns.

When I went through this, I was initially worried about the embarrassment stop me from getting the support I need. Finally, when it is too difficult to continue to pretend that nothing was wrong, I said in a 12-person conference:”I will forgive myself for a few minutes. I have a hot flash and need a break.” At that moment, I feel powerful, confident and assured. Everyone nodded like it was no big deal. After the meeting two colleagues approached me to share their own experience. This encouraged me to talk about my symptoms more of the time, I hope my experiences inspire others to do the same.

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