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August 11, 2017

Why We Don’t Need A ‘Wife’

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Adele Blair, Founder and Managing Director of The Concierge Collective contributes a guest post based on her extensive experience providing concierge services to time poor executives. Her commentary is enlightening around our collective unconscious bias around who this work typically falls to in a relationship. And what default language both women and men still use when describing household duties, which reinforces gender stereotypes.

“I am often challenged by the phrase of ‘I need a wife’.”

This is a frequent reaction to our services and a sentiment expressed by those describing our services – aaarrrgh.  Worse still a phrase uttered primarily by women, however men stray into this area too.

Just last week when I was describing The Concierge Collective‘s services to a very senior gentleman at a top-tier national firm, he said

“oh I’ll tell my wife about this she’ll love it”. To which I replied “don’t you have any domestic responsibility or do you delegate everything to your wife?” #boom

By default, this language transfers all domestic responsibilities to wives. Sorry did we teleport back to 1950?

If women are seeking gender equality why are we still talking as though the ‘wife’ is the person who has the responsibility for domestic chores, personal administration management, childcare, events planning, social schedule, health care … need I go on?

I know I am echoing the views expressed in Annabel Crabb’s book “The Wife Drought”  where she says “it’s a common joke among women juggling work and family. But it’s not actually a joke. Having a spouse who takes care of things at home is a Godsend on the domestic front. It’s a potent economic asset on the work front. And it’s an advantage enjoyed – even in our modern society – by vastly more men than women. But why is the work-and-family debate always about women? Why don’t men get the same flexibility that women do? In our fixation on the barriers that face women on the way into the workplace, do we forget about the barriers that – for men – still block the exits?”

“The lack of time required to take care of things at home is relevant to everyone in the household and therefore should be a shared responsibility.”

Perhaps a change in our language to match our modern lifestyles is a tiny step forward to addressing our ‘time drought’.

This article was originally published by Femeconomy.

About The Concierge Collective

Adele Blair is Founder and Managing Director of The Concierge Collective, one of Australia’s leading concierge companies and a DCC* partner. The Concierge Collective enables time poor clients to simply regain time to live and enjoy other aspects of their lives. They specialize in managing the space between client’s personal to do list and selecting vendors, task execution and completion.

About Femeconomy

Women make over 85% of purchase decisions. You’re Femeconomy. We want to help you shop brands with female leaders to create gender equality. The power is in your purse. Femeconomy approved brands have at least 30% of women on the Board of Directors or are 50% female owned. So far over 700 brands meet our criteria. Look for our badge to shop Femeconomy approved brands.

Female leaders will create gender equality. #femeconomy #shop4equality

*This article references Diversity City Careers or DCC. This is what WORK180 was known as when we first launched back in 2015. You can find out more about our story here.

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About the Author
WORK180 promotes organizational standards that raise the bar for women in the workplace. We only endorse employers that are committed to making real progress so that all women can expect better.

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Our transparent job board only has vacancies from employers we endorse and lets you see what benefits, policies and perks come with the job.