Life’s not predictable. That’s why P&G builds flexibility into our leave of absence plans… to meet the unique life stages, family dynamics, dreams and obligations our employees have.
One example is expanding a family. At P&G, we believe that caring for home and family has no gender. Our global minimum for paid parental leave allows ALL P&G parents to have an equal opportunity to care for and bond with new children.
Here’s Ronnie’s story.
It’s easy to think dads are an accessory as a family welcomes a new child into their family. Moms bear the brunt of the entire process, no doubt about it. That said, in a world with two working parents who equally split household responsibilities, time with the family is all-important. An extra pair of hands aren’t a nice to have, they are essential to a stable household.
With our previous policy, having just one week of paternity leave when my eldest child was born left me making choices between taking critical time to support my newly expanded family or sacrificing vacation. When paid parental leave for spouses and partners was expanded to several weeks, I felt a tremendous sense of relief. I could now provide after my daughter’s birth what I felt was the right care and support for my wife and children.
An example of this is one we all take for granted: Lack of sleep. Our daughter refused to sleep unless someone held her against their chest. If we put her down in her crib, she cried nonstop until she was picked up. This went on for weeks.
I held our daughter from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. every night so my wife could sleep, the only relief she received within the 24-hour window. Our daughter slept on my chest as I lay flat on the couch. Imagine my anxiety as I tried to stay still to not wake her, to allow her to develop as a healthy baby.
Beyond this, spending time with her in the early weeks without worrying about work duties was invaluable. It was the most complete I felt as a father, being able to devote my full attention to her.
Starting a family is a lifetime commitment but the early weeks are crucial to establishing a bond. I’m thankful to P&G for expanding the weeks of paid parental leave; it’s a much-needed enhancement.