We came across an article the other day that explained how more and more women are working later into their pregnancy and it got us thinking, what could an employer do to make the working lives of a pregnant employee that much easier?
It’s not one of those questions that seem to get much airtime or discussion, and yet it is one of those conversation pieces that absolutely needs to happen, not just because it is such a common and wonderful thing, but because it can help both parties make some work accommodations and thrive.
So, without further ado, here are the best ways you can help your employees feel at ease when pregnant:
- Acknowledge The Emotional Rollercoaster
That first trimester is a shock to all new mums because the changes to their body are incredible. What’s more, your pregnant employee may not have told their coworkers yet, which means their mood may be misconstrued. We’re talking about being fatigued and emotional. Our advice: tell your employee they can work from home on any occasion they are doing battle with their hormones. That way they will be more focused on the work than upsetting others or being paranoid.
- Doctor’s Appointments Without A Worry
One of the most important parts of pregnancy is getting the right prenatal care and monitoring the health of both mum and baby. As such, you should fill them with confidence by letting them know they can schedule a doctor’s appointment at any time and not have to worry about making the time back. Of course, if you don’t like this sort of inconsistency, why not give them a set day off each week to accommodate any doctor’s visits.
- Comfort Is The Key To Success
No matter what business you run, making sure your pregnant employees are comfortable is absolutely crucial. That could mean investing in a new ergonomic office chair for them, it could mean you browse maternity scrubs, letting them dress more casual than they otherwise would, asking if they want to move desk so they are closer to a specific utility (the bathroom, for example) or anything else that could make them a lot more comfortable while at work. It could even be that you let them work from home half the week to save them the hassle of commuting in. Whatever works for both parties.
- Pay For A Gym Membership
One of the most helpful pieces of advice a pregnant woman can ever hope to get is about them moving their body. Their centre of gravity will change and that can result in back pains, muscle cramps, joints swelling and everything like that. So, to help them avoid this, a great gesture to make is giving them a gym membership, especially if their local gym has specialist classes. On top of that, encourage them to get up and walk around every hour or so. Maybe even pop a standing desk in the corner of the room so they have the option of where to work. It will all help.