Foster an Environment in Which Taking Leave is Encouraged and Supported
Companies must foster a supportive environment to ensure employees feel comfortable using their new PFML benefits. Otherwise, employees may not take advantage. As an example, the Boston College Center for Work & Family found that workplace supportiveness correlates with the number of weeks that new fathers take off.
Foster Change from the Top
Leadership has a major influence on company culture. Consider three ways leaders can set norms in their organization around taking advantage of PFML:
I. ROLE MODEL BEHAVIORS.
- Company leaders at all levels - from the C-suite to junior managers - should lead by example and take leave for qualifying PFML life events
- Company managers who don't have a need to take leave should commend those who do
II. BROADCAST AND COMMUNICATE
- Maintain awareness of PFML use by keeping PFML in the company dialogue
- Share examples and statistics of PFML use with your organization
- Don't make taking PFML a "big deal" - normalize it by discussing the benefit in the context of other benefits, during new hire training, with non-eligible workers, etc.
III. ENGAGE THE ORGANIZATION
- Talk with employees who took or plan to take PFML to learn their stories
- Have leaders share their own PFML stories with employees
- Engage managers of employees taking leave to understand if they have concerns and offer support
Stay up to date on the latest news on Paid Family and Medical Leave
Sign up and join our mailing list.