Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Discriminatory or business?

Today Bloomberg had a case dropped against it that it discriminates against pregnant women as a practice. That's not to say that they haven't discriminated individually; just not as a practice.

Several women banded together to file a suit against the company founded by New York City mayor, Michael Bloomberg. However, a judge threw it out today stating that j'accuse is not enough in the court system. The burden of proof wasn't there.

So these women will be filing individual lawsuits against the company to have their cases heard, a plight traditionally harder to see through to completion. This is generally the case because personal circumstances make it harder to put the onus on the company.

So I ask you, if a woman is pregnant, for example, and is eliminated from meetings, is it discriminatory? The only answer is - maybe. The question - why? - must be asked. People seem to have a sense of entitlement and believe that the company's responsibility is to the employee. Realistically, the company's responsibility is to ALL employees AND to business.

So why were these women excluded from portions of business? The parts that we don't know are whether the pregnancies interrupted business for reasons such as women being ill. Some meetings require long presentations. There are any number of reasons that may, or may not, apply.

Does a company have to provide explanation? These women were hired because of their skills and abilities to help the company make money. It wasn't charity. It's about business. You know what's coming - the business of business is business. And if ANYTHING is interrupting business then a change needs to be made.

People say that alcoholism is a disease and cannot be helped, yet they wouldn't keep an alcoholic on staff. I'm not trying to liken pregnancy to alcoholism. All I'm saying is that it's a situation in someone's life and if it interrupts business then it does. It sucks for that person, but it sucks for the business as well. It. It can't be helped, but should a business suffer over some perceived allegiance to an employee? Should a business cost itself money and degrade business and consequently possible jobs to other employees over the same allegiance?

Every employee knows the score when they arrive. They are there to help the company make money so they can make money themselves. None of it is about friendship. There is no relationship with the company. So if you're not pulling your weight, for ANY reason, then it's time for a change. As a person, I hate to see it happen. As a business owner, my business would come first.

I don't know the personal stories of these women, but Bloomberg (the person and the company) didn't get to where they are today by being bad at business. Making a public spectacle of it all is ridiculous. Making a choice to get pregnant is a choice and it comes with a lifestyle change. A person has to accept responsibility for the choices they make. Sometimes business and family are exclusive of one another. That's just the way it goes.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

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