Millennials Spark a New Employee Retention Problem

employee retention; celebrating dad; working dad and happy father's day
What happens to a career after a baby? Will it mean a valuable future leader will downshift or opt out?

According to recent studies, the likelihood is yes!he probably will.

You read that right!

Working Fathers: Today's At-Risk Employees

Working fathers, it turns out, are employers' newest employee retention problem. Though job and parenting conflicts have long been considered a woman's issue, young dads on both sides of the Atlantic are expressing similar frustrations. The result is a generation of men talking with their feet.

"More than half of millennial men want to change their job for something with less responsibility and less pay," read a Huffington Post article about the recently released Modern Family Index in the U.K., a sister study to a similar study of parents in the U.S. About a third of the U.K. dads also admitted to feeling burned out. It's "a trade-off dads are prepared to make to get rid of the stress they face in balancing work and family life," read the Huffington Post article.

Employee Retention: A Global Shift

The findings mirror those of the U.S. study showing some equally stressed dads on this side of the pond:

  • 1 in 3 new U.S. dads felt parenthood limited their opportunities for advancement
  • 31% considered quitting because of judgement from colleagues
  • 69% said fatherhood will likely mean a job change

A Global Shift in Fatherhood; a Critical Challenge to Employee Retention

The U.K study, a joint venture between Bright Horizons and Working Families, illustrates a growing threat of a so-called fatherhood penalty. Like the already familiar motherhood penalty, the phenomenon forces parents into careers for which they're overqualified and underpaid solely for the benefit of a better fit between work and family. And with fathers in both countries considering a job change, it marks a challenge for employee retention, and a cautionary tale for employers competing for talent in the current market.

"To prevent a 'fatherhood penalty' emerging in the UK - and to help tackle the motherhood penalty," Working Families Chief Executive Sarah Jackson told the BBC, "employers need to ensure that work is designed in a way that helps women and men find a good work-life fit."
Bright Horizons
About the Author
Bright Horizons
Bright Horizons
In 1986, our founders saw that child care was an enormous obstacle for working parents. On-site centers became one way we responded to help employees – and organizations -- work better. Today we offer child care, elder care, and help for education and careers -- tools used by more than 1,000 of the world’s top employers and that power many of the world's best brands
employee retention; celebrating dad; working dad and happy father's day

Subscribe to the On the Horizon Newsletter