Over the Christmas holidays, I was lucky enough to spend a day on Waiheke with three friends who all work in a mix of sectors, from engineering to government. After admiring the views and enjoying a fresh Rosé at Tantalus, we headed to Wild on Waiheke for a casual lunch. We randomly started discussing our challenges for the year ahead and one of the group mentioned that she is likely to lose one of her most talented team members due to them being in the midst of menopause and really not coping well. Being a female in her 40s, my thoughts simply haven’t turned to how this will affect my work, home life, relationships as it simply is not widely talked about, and all of the ladies that I was lunching with felt that the topic is not discussed both socially or in the workplace. Now, it could be that we have not done our research but it seemed that all of us as managers and team leaders had experienced or best put not experienced any organisational support with respect to this.
Even writing this makes me feel a bit uncomfortable as I am not sure how opening a discussion on this topic will be received by the wider business community and although this is a health issue it does impact business. I’d love to hear from you if you are a business leader or someone who has been affected by menopause in the workplace and have some great ideas on:
- How we can make this a less taboo topic to discuss.
- Raise awareness in the workplace without making our colleagues feel uncomfortable.
- Make it as acceptable a conversation as maternity.
- How you have supported anyone going through this – either partners who are helping someone through it or someone going through this themselves from a work perspective.
- Practical work solutions.
Appreciate any feedback/comments, due to the topic content if you’d like to contact me directly on 09 973 5470 or email firstname.lastname@example.org – I’d love to chat.