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Will Marissa Mayer’s Yahoo Maternity Leave Policy Influence Other CEO’s?

Holly Hicks,

Will Marissa Mayer's Yahoo Maternity Leave Policy Influence Other CEOs

As you may or may not know, Marissa Mayer is the new CEO of Yahoo. Marissa used to work for Google, in a very strong position, however she left Google to become the CEO of Yahoo last July. She was newly pregnant at that time, and recently had her baby. Over her pregnancy, she took no large shortcuts or a long leave; in fact she worked from home to help turn around Yahoo whilst bearing her new baby.

Only a few weeks after Mayer had her baby, she returned back to work for Yahoo. Several people criticized her for this move, saying she needs to be with her baby. She told press that the baby will be very safe and that the baby has a very nice area near where she works at.

Recently, she has invoked a new policy to help future mothers in this department. Yahoo had currently allowed 8 weeks of maternity leave for mothers, however a lot of people felt this was very low. Marissa changed this to 16 weeks recently, joining the same amount of time as technology greats such as Facebook and Google. This may be one of the first steps in turning Yahoo around, as Marissa tries to dig it out of a serious hole that had been caused by various things.

Under this new policy by Yahoo, maternity moms will not only receive 16 weeks of paid leave, but fathers also receive 8 weeks of paid leave. Yahoo will also begin offering $500 to the new parents to spend on a myriad of things if they please. Compared to Google, who gives between 18 to 22 weeks of paid leave, along with $500 and preferred parking for expecting mothers, and Facebook, who give 4 months of paid leave to both mothers and fathers.

Although many people think this is the correct decision on Marissa’s part, she is still facing being scrutinized for making this call. As with many things she’s done, everyone is very closely following exactly what she does and analyzing it with the utmost care. As we’ve seen a ton of other Yahoo CEO’s terribly fail in the past few years, we can only wonder how each decision Marissa makes will affect Yahoo.

A lot of other companies are still very far behind with their maternity policies. It will be interesting to see how other CEO’s and companies reply to Yahoo taking the step forward to aid mothers and fathers with this process. Will offering a good amount of maternity leave become a common thing among companies located in the United States in the future? Or will many companies remain to offer low benefits to pregnant mothers and expecting fathers?

It’s hard to say at the moment, if you look at it from a woman’s standpoint who will want to carry a baby in the future, would you rather work for a company who offers great benefits if you happen to get pregnant, or very little benefits? The choice is fairly obvious, and it will show in the coming years. The question still remains as to whether or not other CEO’s of large companies will follow suit. Unless somebody can travel forward in time, we won’t know until it actually happens.

Image courtesy of (David Castillo Dominici) from


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