"Are you going to have a baby and ruin my investment?"

  • How we announced my pregnancy
  • The polar ways in which investors reacted (published with permission)
  • The surprising reasons people applied for the maternity cover position
  • The impact of New Zealand's maternity leave culture
  • Did having a baby ruin the company?
  • Three lessons I learned along the way

Announcing my pregnancy

Investors reactions

  • NBR surveyed member subscribers and found that 49% thought a company should only disclose a director's health issues once they become life-threatening. That means many people expect company directors not to disclose health issues with a much more severe and long term threat than pregnancy.
  • As an employee, to be entitled to maternity leave, a pregnant employee must give their employer at least three months' written notice before the expected date of delivery. You are under no obligation to provide notice before this time. I gave more notice because I wanted the insight and help of my board. Although, I am curious why we require triple the amount of notice for a pregnant employee than an employee leaving their job?
  • There is no provision in New Zealand law for a Director to take planned maternity leave from their responsibilities and legal liability. This is bonkers. It means anyone taking parental leave must either take a leave of absence and continue with all the risks associated with being a Director whilst having no oversight or resigning. Hello, gender representation on boards?!

New Zealand's culture and its impact

Who applied and why

So did having a baby ruin the company?

Three lessons

  1. If an investor believes that you having a baby will ruin their investment, do not try to convince them otherwise, or they might invest! You don't need this kind of person in your corner.

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