A Mommy Train?
The "mommy track" should be passé, according to Maxine H. Neuhauser. In a recent National Law Journal article, she wrote that despite all the media attention given to mothers who leave the legal field because of the paucity of opportunities to achieve a work-life balance, "It doesn’t have to be this way." Neuhauser calls on law firms to stick with female associates as they slog through the tough parenting years with young children because, "More law firms should realize that women who are allowed to stay in the game will not only develop a firm's trust over the years but also demonstrate loyalty, commitment and maturity."
Neuhauser’s suggestion? A "mommy train." "The mommy train may travel a bit more slowly than conventional career trains, and makes more stops, but it eventually leads to the same professional destination of career success and fulfillment," she wrote. "It would be wise for law firms to realize they will more likely retain talented women by allowing them to ride the mommy train — giving them scheduling flexibility, for instance — than by forcing them to ‘opt different’ or to take the mommy track and opt out altogether." (August 2007)