Dear readers, this fine Monday morning comes to you full of expectation, no doubt, though we wonder if you recognize it.
For numerous generations human beings have bowed to the societal constrainsts of time (relative to our Gregorian Calendar) dictating that the week begin on Monday and end on Friday. (yes, we know it actually begins on Sunday and ends on Saturday but...who really thinks that way?) This places certain demands not only on our functionality, whether at home or at work, but on our outlook. From a very early age, one is trained to yearn for Friday--and the coming weekend... while harboring resentment of Monday and the coming work week.
The weekend, we are taught, is for fun and frolic. It begins at 5 pm on Friday, and ends at 8 am on Monday. The work week, so we learn from our parents, is a thankless five days of tedious labor-- where we are shackled to a desk, or a dock, or a computer, in the end to be rewarded with enough funds to-- we hope--pay our bills and have enough left over for recreation during that all-important weekend.
Jane thinks the new millennium is changing this ancient perception. Jane notices this change mostly in the women she networks with.
We find that women of the new millennium, baby boomers and Gen X and Ys included, are unwilling to allow old, preconceived notions paint their world. Women are determined to facilitate change-- for the better. Change that adds color to those dull, gray cubicles so many of us sit in day after day. Change that gives workers freedom to do their work at a pace of their own choosing, a pace that allows for breaks (latte, anyone?), a pace that accommodates leaving early for a sick child, and other important events such as school plays, dentist appointments, shopping for prom-- events as important in the scheme of things as any task the worker is performing at his or her desk!
How do we know this? Why are we predicting a complete change in the status quo? What lurks behind our desire to foster this new work paradigm? The increasing attention MSM (main stream media) is giving women in the workplace and women business owners. Lip-sticking believes that women will be the driving force in this new era, a driving force to make everyone's lives better. Women will insist on flex time, telecommuting, and three-day weekends, all to have more family time, more personal time, more relaxation time.
We do NOT predict that this will happen over night. We do NOT predict that this desire to turn the workplace upsidedown will change the need to create value in the workplace-- value that may, sometimes, require longer hours, even weekend work. We do NOT predict that women will throw good business sense out the window to hurry off to Susie's playdate or Johnny's ballgame.
We DO predict that women will find ways to incorporate good business practices with Susie's playdate and Johnny's ballgame.
We DO predict that women will ask for help-- from workers, bosses, husbands, partners, and even children, to accomplish these tasks.
We DO predict that women will use technology to their advantage-- not merely as a tool to keep the office running smoothly, but as a means to free them from the shackles still tied around their ankles...shackles left over from centuries of male domination where competition was the rule-- where winning was everything-- where the reward was in having the biggest office, the most expensive chair, content in the realization that someone else was holding down the fort at home.
Great expectations. That's what we see ahead of us this Monday morning. Not a dreary 5 days of tedious work. No, we see excitement, accomplishment, innovation, collaboration, and alliances springing up all over the world.
We see this vision not only in our mind's eye, but in your eyes, dear reader. We see it in the blog posts we read (such as those at the Carnival of the Capitalists this week), and in the connections of men and women from here to there, striving to do good (such as Todd Storch who is riding in the MS150 this year "in honor of Virginia Schmidt." So far, Todd has raised over $2,000 and he "would like to continue to help raise dollars to fight this disease.").
We see the change happening all around us-- change that has been a long time coming. Change focused on making life in this new millennium better-- for us all. Some of it just in time for: Mother's Day!
What's not to like about that?