Working moms have been the subject of much debate in the parenting arena. They are often criticized for just not being there. In fact, there is now lots of research which shows that a working mom can bring up healthy and well-adjusted kids. The research shows that it is not damaging and that there are in fact many benefits for the children. After a little research of my own, I found these positive effects of working moms.
1. Working moms provide positive role models
Children need to realize from an early age that women are not just domestic servants and that they may have a professional life of their own. Girls will learn that they need to think about a career, rather than just getting married and having children. Boys need to realize that household chores are part and parcel of family life. This will also influence them significantly when they start their own families.
2. Working moms raise more independent kids
My mother worked at a local hospital while we were growing up. We were fortunate in having a wonderful home helper who was a surrogate mother in many ways. However, the main advantage was that we grew up to be very independent. We also had to take responsibility in making sure that meals were ready on time. That lesson is still useful today!
3. Working moms are less prone to depression
Statistics show that a stay-at-home mom is more likely to suffer from depression, which in turn can take its toll on her children. Children can never really benefit from having a frustrated and depressed mother around them.
4. Working moms are better at ignoring the “parenting police”
Every parent is concerned about how much time and attention they should be giving to their kids. Working moms are always subject to unrelenting pressure from the “parenting police,” who are often thinly disguised as well-meaning relatives. Not to mention all the experts on parenting who have invaded the media. Everyone is a parenting expert, it seems these days. The sensible working mom knows what the trade-offs are. She is confident enough to juggle the demands of parenting with her desire to follow a career.
5. Working moms can better manage quality time with their kids
Everybody talks about quality or prime time with kids. It is a sad fact that many parents are only half listening when they are with their kids because the other half is attached to their device. Working moms know that they need to switch off the minute they get home, and that they need to dedicate 100% of their precious time to their kids. Email, texts, and Facebook can all wait until the kids are in bed.
6. Working moms’ kids may do better at school
Denmark perhaps is not a typical example. They spend a lot more on early childhood care (1.2% of their GDP, compared to the miserly 0.4% in the USA). The results are clear: the children of working moms there are doing better academically.
7. Working moms’ kids have fewer behavioral problems
Many women worry that not spending enough time with their offspring may lead to behavioral problems. After looking at research studies since 1960, the truth is that working moms’ kids are not suffering at all. In many cases, they even turned out to be better behaved than the stay-at-home moms’ kids.
8. Working moms do not affect their children’s emotional development
Lots of research has been done at the University College London on whether working moms’ kids were liable to grow up emotionally deprived. The good news is that this is not at all the case. The secret is to get the balance right between work and parenting commitments. Day care and a supportive partner, together with parent-friendly workplace policies make it perfectly feasible.
9. Working moms tend to be in happier relationships
Much will depend on the partner’s attitude and support for the working mom. I remember my father being very supportive of my mother and he often took on the role of supervisor in making sure that household chores got done.
Many working moms have found it easier to keep their relationship healthier because they are happier and more fulfilled. This can help to make the relationship stronger.
10. Working moms get a break
There are lots of jokes about the working mom closing the door and leaving all the chaos behind, not too worried about the fact that the caregiver may or may not cope! The real benefits are that working moms can be fulfilled and can have a break from family pressures and demanding children.
11. Maternal employment will help families
Experts now agree that if long-awaited family policy reforms in the USA are put in place, there will be many benefits for families all round. This is urgent because US figures show that 66% of married mothers are in some form of employment. Also the USA has fallen behind other countries such as Norway, where paternal leave (a whopping 12 weeks, paid!) is standard practice. The US has a long way to go!
Did you have a working mom? What were the pros and cons? Let us know in the comments.
Taking your work to the next level means setting and keeping career goals. A career goal is a targeted objective that explains what you want your ultimate profession to be.
Defining career goals is a critical step to achieving success. You need to know where you’re going in order to get there. Knowing what your career goals are isn’t just important for you–it’s important for potential employers too. The relationship between an employer and an employee works best when your goals for the future and their goals align. Saying, “Oh, I don’t know. I’ll do anything,” makes you seem indecisive, and opens you up to taking on ill-fitting tasks that won’t lead you to your dream life.
Career goal templates’ one-size-fits-all approach won’t consider your unique goals and experiences. They won’t help you stand out, and they may not reflect your full potential.
In this article, I’ll help you to define your career goals with SMART goal framework, and will provide you with a list of examples goals for work and career.
Instead of relying on a generalized framework to explain your vision, use a tried-and-true goal-setting model. SMART is an acronym for “Specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic with Timelines.” The SMART framework demystifies goals by breaking them into smaller steps.
Helpful hints when setting SMART career goals:
Start with short-term goals first. Work on your short-term goals, and then progress the long-term interests. Short-term goals are those things which take 1-3 years to complete. Long-term goals take 3-5 years to do. As you succeed in your short-term goals, that success should feed into accomplishing your long-term goals.
Be specific, but don’t overdo it. You need to define your career goals, but if you make them too specific, then they become unattainable. Instead of saying, “I want to be the next CEO of Apple, where I’ll create a billion-dollar product,” try something like, “My goal is to be the CEO of a successful company.”
Get clear on how you’re going to reach your goals. You should be able to explain the actions you’ll take to advance your career. If you can’t explain the steps, then you need to break your goal down into more manageable chunks.
Don’t be self-centered. Your work should not only help you advance, but it should also support the goals of your employer. If your goals differ too much, then it might be a sign that the job you’ve taken isn’t a good fit.
If you want to learn more about setting SMART Goals, watch the video below to learn how you can set SMART career goals.
After you’re clear on how to set SMART goals, you can use this framework to tackle other aspects of your work. For instance, you might set SMART goals to improve your performance review, look for a new job, or shift your focus to a different career.
We’ll cover examples of ways to use SMART goals to meet short-term career goals in the next section.
Why You Need an Individual Development Plan
Setting goals is one part of the larger formula for success. You may know what you want to do, but you also have to figure out what skills you have, what you lack, and where your greatest strengths and weaknesses are.
One of the best ways to understand your capabilities is by using the Science Careers Individual Development Plan skills assessment. It’s free, and all you need to do is register an account and take a few assessments.
These assessments will help you determine if your career goals are realistic. You’ll come away with a better understanding of your unique talents and skill-sets. You may decide to change some of your career goals or alter your timeline based on what you learn.
40 Examples of Goals for Work & Career
All this talk of goal-setting and self-assessment may sound great in theory, but perhaps you need some inspiration to figure out what your goals should be.
For Changing a Job
Attend more networking events and make new contacts.
Achieve a promotion to __________ position.
Get a raise.
Plan and take a vacation this year.
Agree to take on new responsibilities.
Develop meaningful relationships with your coworkers and clients.
Ask for feedback on a regular basis.
Learn how to say, “No,” when you are asked to take on too much.
Delegate tasks that you no longer need to be responsible for.
Strive to be in a leadership role in __ number of years.
For Switching Career Path
Pick up and learn a new skill.
Find a mentor.
Become a volunteer in the field that interests you.
Commit to getting training or going back to school.
Read the most recent books related to your field.
Decide whether you are happy with your work-life balance and make changes if necessary. 
Plan what steps you need to take to change careers.
Compile a list of people who could be character references or submit recommendations.
Commit to making __ number of new contacts in the field this year.
Create a financial plan.
For Getting a Promotion
Reduce business expenses by a certain percentage.
Stop micromanaging your team members.
Become a mentor.
Brainstorm ways that you could improve your productivity and efficiency at work
Seek a new training opportunity to address a weakness.
Find a way to organize your work space.
Seek feedback from a boss or trusted coworker every week/ month/ quarter.
Become a better communicator.
Find new ways to be a team player.
Learn how to reduce work hours without compromising productivity.
For Acing a Job Interview
Identify personal boundaries at work and know what you should do to make your day more productive and manageable.
Identify steps to create a professional image for yourself.
Go after the career of your dreams to find work that does not feel like a job.
Look for a place to pursue your interest and apply your knowledge and skills.
Find a new way to collaborate with experts in your field.
Identify opportunities to observe others working in the career you want.
Become more creative and break out of your comfort zone.
Ask to be trained more relevant skills for your work.
Ask for opportunities to explore the field and widen your horizon
Set your eye on a specific award at work and go for it.
Career Goal Setting FAQs
I’m sure you still have some questions about setting your own career goals, so here I’m listing out the most commonly asked questions about career goals.
1. What if I’m not sure what I want my career to be?
If you’re uncertain, be honest about it. Let the employer know as much as you know about what you want to do. Express your willingness to use your strengths to contribute to the company. When you take this approach, back up your claim with some examples.
If you’re not even sure where to begin with your career, check out this guide:
Lying to potential employers is bound to end in disaster. In the interview, a lie can make you look foolish because you won’t know how to answer follow up questions.
Even if you think your career goal may not precisely align with the employer’s expectations for a long-term hire, be open and honest. There’s probably more common ground than they realize, and it’s up to you to bridge any gaps in expectations.
Being honest and explaining these connections shows your employer that you’ve put a lot of thought into this application. You aren’t just telling them what they want to hear.
3. Is it better to have an ambitious goal, or should I play it safe?
You should have a goal that challenges you, but SMART goals are always reasonable. If you put forth a goal that is way beyond your capabilities, you will seem naive. Making your goals too easy shows a lack of motivation.
Employers want new hires who are able to self-reflect and are willing to take on challenges.
4. Can I have several career goals?
It’s best to have one clearly-defined career goal and stick with it. (Of course, you can still have goals in other areas of your life.) Having a single career goal shows that you’re capable of focusing, and it shows that you like to accomplish what you set out to do.
On the other hand, you might have multiple related career goals. This could mean that you have short-term goals that dovetail into your ultimate long-term career goal. You might also have several smaller goals that feed into a single purpose.
For example, if you want to become a lawyer, you might become a paralegal and attend law school at the same time. If you want to be a school administrator, you might have initial goals of being a classroom teacher and studying education policy. In both cases, these temporary jobs and the extra education help you reach your ultimate goal.
You’ll have to devote some time to setting career goals, but you’ll be so much more successful with some direction. Remember to:
Set SMART goals. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, and Realistic with Timelines. When you set goals with these things in mind, you are likely to achieve the outcomes you want.
Have short-term and long-term goals. Short-term career goals can be completed in 1-3 years, while long-term goals will take 3-5 years to finish. Your short-term goals should set you up to accomplish your long-term goals.
Assess your capabilities by coming up with an Individual Development Plan. Knowing how to set goals won’t help you if you don’t know yourself. Understand what your strengths and weaknesses are by taking some self-assessments.
Choose goals that are appropriate to your ultimate aims. Your career goals should be relevant to one another. If they aren’t, then you may need to narrow your focus. Your goals should match the type of job that you want and the quality of life that you want to lead.
Be clear about your goals with potential employers. Always be honest with potential employers about what you want to do with your life. If your goals differ from the company’s objectives, find a way bridge the gap between what you want for yourself and what your employer expects.
By doing goal-setting work now, you’ll be able to make conscious choices on your career path. You can always adjust your plan if things change for you, but the key is to give yourself a road map for success.