A Working Mother’s Most Dreaded Word!

Rant: Please skip incase you are in a good mood and dont want to spoil it πŸ™‚

I was a single member team when I joined this office some 2 years ago. One more guy joined after me about a 1 year ago and now 2 more guys joined me in Feb this year. We are a group of 4, all reporting into the same boss who sits away from India and manages us.

Out of the three guys, one of them is married but doesntΒ have any children. His wife is also working, pretty much a big shot, travelling extensively etc etc.

The other two are bachelors.

Before they joined in, there were no issues. Issues, as in what a working mom dreads the most ‘STAYING BACK’

I would come in on time, work for 8.5 hours and punch out on time. to the very minute. If I punched in at 9.12, I would leave at 5.42…yaa like that!

But now, for the past few weeks, I am slowly noticing some emails from the guys we report into abroad, praising the guys for staying back.

These guys stay back almost every other day. Till 7, 8, 10..and infact even till 11 in the night.

I, on the other hand, leave dot after 8.5 hours of work.

I have never faced a situation where I have left work incomplete. I always do my ‘task of the day’ and leave.

However, the subtle praises from the bosses for the late stay, for the report sent at 11 in the night, the ‘dedication’ shown by these guys, is slowly making me insecure. Yaa, I am cheap that ways.

I still do the same work as I did earlier, within the stipulated time, but I am slowly getting scared if people will start comparing.

I dontΒ know what work these guys since we dontΒ report into each other or anything. We all work on the same project, but we hardly cross paths. I really dont know what work they do , staying back or whether their staying back is really relevant. But unfortunately, the folks there seem to think its a show of dedication.

Its really none of my business. RD tells me to just do my work in the stipulated time and then get home. But now I am feeling that will the boss (who is an Indian by the way and has the habit of staying back as well) think I dont work enough 😦

I dont want to stay back late. I want to go to my child and spend at least a couple of hours with her. I feel like a stupid insecure, idiotic person as I type this, but seriously will this ‘staying back late’ by the bachelors and non parents, affect a working mother’s career?

I dont know.


PS – Yesterday I stayed at work till 7, reached home at 9, thanks to the wonderful infrastructure of Bombay, worked from 10 to 12.45…got up at 4.45 to get back to work, only for my damn computer NOT to start for about half an hour…I swear I am giving up soon!


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123 Responses to A Working Mother’s Most Dreaded Word!

  1. All I can say is – Hugs, RM. Big big hugs.

    • R's Mom says:

      Thanks rey πŸ™‚ hugs right back…Guess, it was a super crazy rant eh?

      • It is not crazy, RM. I can understand what you are saying and going through. But, I don’t know of a solution for this. Sigh!

      • Swarnalatha says:

        Hi, this is not a rant. It is a serious issue. Some insecure people work late just to prove that they are dedicated. Some people do it so that they get free food (if they stay beyond 7.30). There is no work life balance. Even if you are single, one can have hobby, they can play, keep fit. It is not free titheir it is their personal time. It looks like by hiring an employee they take complete lease of your life. ( they are very generous to give time to eat and sleep). What with the invent of mobile and laptop, one is expected to work all the time, even on vacation, weekend. It is a pathetic state of affair.

  2. Hugs, RM! I so hear you!!I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve heard men taking potshots at women for their reluctance to put in late hours, and it totally bugs me. I mean, as long as the quality and quantity of the work does not suffer, how does it matter whether an employee leaves at six or eight?
    It is definitely wrong on the part of your boss to encourage a ‘late-sitting’ culture, instead of asking your colleagues why they needed to send that mail at 11 in the night, why they need to put in more hours when one of them is able to finish all her work well within time. Surely it’s a case of inefficiency?

    • R's Mom says:

      I honestly dont know if he is encouraging it..because I must admit he has NEVER asked me to stay back late…but sometimes, well…I dont know rey SH, I am so confused 😦

  3. vethal says:

    as a working mom, am always dreading the word TRAVEL. now no one can be more foolish or greedy than me . I left a non -travel job that was not very challenging to get into a challenging job that involves late work, customer and travel 😦

  4. greenboochi says:

    Hugs RM! Hugs hugs and more hugs…

  5. I kind of understand where you are coming from. And I find it so so idiotic a myth, honestly. what are we trying to prove when we stay back? Ofcourse, some may be so passionate that they wish to work, work, work and work and then get praise, praise, praise and praise. You inspire me to write a post on this – let me give you an example: during my post-grad days, I used to see a Special ed etacher in the pre-school working till 9. I used to use the adjoining library for reference and I used to meet her and tell her that I really admire the way she loved her job so much. and she used to tell me, “No, I don’t feel proud of it. It only means one thing – others are effcient enough to finish their job of the day during work tiem and I cannot.” I can bet that it wasn’t true because I have seen how much she did for everyone. This category of late-workers is understandable. She was an unmarried lady as well.
    I have opportunities here to work extra and earn by the hour adn all RM. I am so wary of doing it though. one, I am scraed that something I do because I enjoy it will become a dreadful process when my motivations are changed. Secondly, I love family and hobbies too much to do this.
    and also, what is this life full of care, if we don’t have time to stand and stare? πŸ™‚

    • R's Mom says:

      Wow! she is really sweet na..it nice to come in touch with such lovely people…

      You are a very composed person rey…I think I need to really brainwash myself and learn to ignore in life

  6. Chaitali says:

    Indeed its a dreaded word.. i will say u stick to RD’s advice!!

  7. The Bride says:

    Sadly I think having these staying-back type colleagues might affect you if your boss is the type to valorise this, which he seems to be. I have mostly worked with bosses who couldn’t care less what time I came in or left and only once with a boss that liked people to stay back, but mostly to go to cocktail parties haha! Even so, I obliged only now and then and if I had kids, I probably wouldn’t have. The thing is if you have a boss like that and you want to leave early you need to be on the ball at work and maybe deliver some extra value now and then.

    Mainly though, I would “train” my boss not to have any such expectations – I recently made the mistake of telling my colleagues they could contact me at home when i was on sick leave and whoa regretted it – and if he was the type like yours passing subtle hints, I would simply ignore him. If he brought it up directly I would say – “I believe a sign of efficiency is leaving on time” and leave it that that. Chances are he will be gobsmacked and shut up.

    • R's Mom says:

      hahaha..seriously for cocktail parties..awesome!

      I think you are right Bride, I should not set expectations at all…I loved that line about efficiency..thanks πŸ™‚

  8. Arch says:

    Hey RM,

    Hugs. I think you should not be worried. There is a general Indian mindset to overstay and work. We all know how we have glorified excessiveness in everything and work is no exception. I totally know you are only ranting and for the brilliant person you are, this should pose no threat! yet, stay calm at work. Just be as good, and remember not to over work!

    I had a wonderful manager who took pride in saying, she walks back home 2.5 kms and makes dinner by 8 for her family. Infact, she used to tell this to a crowd of men and clearly ask everyone to wrap up by 6. Never once was her work under question or the team in trouble! That is how it should be. 8.5 hours is bad enough πŸ™‚

    Ditto with you on the 9.12 – 5.42 type!

  9. ashreyamom says:

    hmmm.. in my previous company i also had this proper punching and 8.5 hours thing. and i was reporting to a lady boss. so, she always had a feeling that if at all ppl stay back for hrs everyday, it means they are in-effcient. everybody is allocated work, which can be done in stipulated time. so u need to be smart worker. so i never had to stay back.. on contrary, there was another team which worked on Saturdays also , just to show of their workaholic nature and get that extra pay for over time. and we cant help it.
    even my hubby says, dont think of anything, just do the work, dont even think of returns or compare urself with other. incase, if ur boss think, other person has done little work more as he is bachelor and can afford that extra time, what big deal. he will go a year ahead for promotion. but, if u think of that small increment now, you will soil the great time spent with bunty. so, choose.. later that person( bachelor) cant stay long all time in his life. and boss will take it for granted that he would stay all time, which will become an unsaid implication.

    so just chill.. do ur work. and think of nothing else.. πŸ™‚

  10. Tharani says:

    Oh my God RM. I just typed a big comment and it disappeared. Is it there anywhere?

  11. Sumana says:

    You know RM, it has been a while i have started ignoring such things, where the bachelors stay late and get work done and get praises. Don’t bother on such stuff is all i say.

  12. Oh RM…that must be hard. At the same time though, you get paid for 8.5 hrs, so it makes sense to work for that time. And if you are efficient enough to complete all the given tasks, why would you have to stay back? Hugs! I can imagine the pressure it must put on you though…but don’t kill yourself for a job. Like people always tell me, if something happens to you, they will replace you without a thought. Do your bit but don’t forget your life…

  13. Hugs, RM. This is a dilemma that every married woman faces, I would say. I can understand what you are trying to say. Totally.

    Unfortunately, Indian working environment is like that. Staying back till late hours in office is considered a sign of sincerity and dedication to the company. I have worked in companies like that – in fact, all the companies I have worked with have been like that, my last company was extremely like that. And a few people staying back late in office, sadly, do tend to set a trend for the others as well, and for the management too.

    In our working culture, people who leave ON TIME after finishing their day’s work are sometimes misunderstood to be flippant. Heck, even people who use their vacation days are considered flippant – I have seen that!!

    In my last company, I was the only married person in my team who had to go back home and cook for my family and spend time with them – and I think my need to leave on time was never really understood by anyone in the company.

    This is not to depress you further or discourage you. I am only saying what I have observed in my work experience so far.

    This is not to say that you should also fall into the habit of leaving late from work. As long as your work for the day is done, you have every right to leave. So, let sleeping dogs lie. Continue to do your work and leave on time as usual. When the situation arises – if and when your boss chastises you for leaving ‘early’ – be prepared to speak up for your timings.

    • R's Mom says:

      no no you havent discouraged me…like you said in the last para, I will definitely defend my work timings…

      Thanks for this rey..feeling much better after reading the comments

  14. chipmunk2890 says:

    don compare yourself, if ur appraisl has any block comapre then.. word of appreciation got nothing more than R happiness? put a sign saying “the art to excel is to finish with in time”.. come on yaar they are guys we cant sit lik them…this bachelor thing noe.. they get free ac.. full time browsing access, any time coffee they need not have any thing so they sitting….

    cheer up πŸ™‚

  15. I can totally relate to that! Hugs. Don’t fall into the trap of staying back late for the sake of staying back late. I always have a hard cut off. I’m at office at 8.30 and leave at 5 ( from this year) … till last year i used to come at 9.30 & leave at 6. Everyone respects my time .. of course there are snide remarks from male colleagues. Females never really had it easy anyway. But trust me, it doesn’t affect .. after a certain time, ppl do appreciate you for what you bring to the table and your efficiency. I know what i’m talking. I have 7 awards in the 8 years that i’ve put in with the present company! So chill. and stop burning urself out!

    • R's Mom says:

      you are a super woman..you can do everything rey…I absolutely adore and idolise you..crafts, cooking, raising an adorable kid, working..WOW! you are a total inspiration Shruti πŸ™‚

  16. oh boy….please don’t start stressing about such stuff and worry about your career. Just do your job, and leave on time. One thing that helps me is to document what I do clearly. I copy my manager on most communication…..when review time comes and if any unreasonable stuff is brought up, I have my data (emails, weekly/monthly status reports, etc) to back me up.

    Also, don’t be shy to take it to the next level if they really start putting unreasonable expectations from you. Keep in mind – they will expect from you what you give them. If you start giving them 10 hours, they will always expect that. So don’t budge on time.

    • R's Mom says:

      I agree, I think I am just looking too much into it…I mean, whats the big deal right?

      Yep, the copying to manager definitely works, I have learnt through bad experiences…

      Thanks for commenting rey and welcome here

  17. Amit says:

    If someone is staying back late, he is either inefficient or does not have an AC at home or has not cooked dinner. A manager who praises such a person is an idiot.
    I had such an idiot in my previous project. One day, when the whole team have had enough, we called him in a meeting and gave it to him. After that he never dared. πŸ™‚
    If someone points out that you do not stay late enough tell them that you are a smart worker and you know how to finish your work on time.

    • R's Mom says:

      hahahah or has not cooked dinner πŸ™‚ Well, honestly Amit, my manager has never asked me to stay back late as such ever, but somehow the hints here seem subtle, may be I am over looking into the matter…

      your team is awesome eh?

      • Amit says:

        We were working for 16 hours a day and were very close to turning into zombies. We had to take the step before someone died. 😦
        Oh! They never ask. Its always in hints and then when they think that you are not understanding, you will get a direct mail.

  18. varsha says:

    Hmm, I totally agree with you. Same is the case at my office too. Totally agree that we have to spend time with the kid. I guess it is better to let your boss know that your tasks are on time. Try to find out whether those guys are actually working πŸ™‚ case may be they wait till night to send out that mail. πŸ˜‰ This is the case most of the times

  19. Journomuse says:

    Hmmm…work is often such a balancing act when there is a family and our own personal ambitions to manage. I’d say R that you are doing the right thing. That the boss sitting there is the Indian is the only reasons for such compliments to fly for working late. I have worked for enough Western bosses to know for them your style of working is more appreciable.. πŸ™‚ So I think take RD’s advice and do your best in the 8.5hours that you are there. Quality of work delivered will always speak louder than quantity of work done in duress just to match up!

    • R's Mom says:

      Ah! here you are πŸ™‚ Hope things are fine

      I agree, the Western bosses, do prefer us leaving on time…I guess RD is right as usual πŸ™‚

  20. Ramya says:

    This really is serious and one thing is for sure. ALL working mothers go through this. But one thing for sure. Finally when the decision comes to work or family, we always choose family coz we believe they need us. so lets feel great that way πŸ˜‰

  21. DI says:

    I hear you. It is sad when stretching beyond work hours is seen as dedication, or good performance. But that’s how it works. I know, it’s not easy to judge what someone else is doing, but repeated praising someone just because they put in more hours, makes no sense to me.
    I come in at 9 30 and leave at 5 30 dot. I face a lot of harmless ‘jokes’ because of this, but I really don’t care. Also, I know the day someone makes even a timepass comment about how I take it easy because I leave on time, I am using the ‘efficiency’ card, as to how I can’t help it if the others are too slow to finish their work in the stipulated time ;). I have done it with my boss before and it worked. Atleast shuts people up.
    In any case, end of day, my priorities are clear, and I make no two ways about the fact that my baby is more/as important as my work, and I am not giving extra attention to the latter and reducing my time with the former, because if it were the other way round, it wont be acceptable anyway.
    So chill. I know it’s easy to say it, but you have a LOT of company in this πŸ™‚

    • R's Mom says:

      But you have such a small baby..even then?? I cant believe that!

      I think you and Bride are right about the effiency thing πŸ™‚ I should really try it!

  22. Mathangi Vijay says:

    So So So true RM.. I can empathize so much with you because I am sailing in the same boat as yours. Here all my other team mates irrespective of being married / unmarried stay late and I am the only one following 9 to 6 timings. But as you said I never leave any work assigned to me unfinished. My project situation is currently very tight, so I hardly take breaks, have lunch at desk n all that so that I can leave early. But no one understands here. If someone talks that the project is very hectic, someone will definitely take a dig at me saying it does not matter to her, cuz she leaves at 6 anyway.
    If I do better time management and handle my work life balance efficiently is it my mistake?
    There are some days when I end up feeling blue..
    But I tell you, be thick skinned and never heed to these people’s words. Its not worth giving up on accounts of people like them..
    Hugs to you RM, and cheer up.. Its alrite and what you are doing is correct. Dont worry about those people..

    • R's Mom says:

      Awww big hugs right back to you…I think I should just get thick skinned rey..it will work so much better for me πŸ™‚

      Resolve of the day is to get thick skinned and not think so much πŸ™‚

  23. greengables14 says:

    I face this issue too everyday Rm.. Not with my boss though.. he himself is a family man and understands..but the rest of the team…i get comments like ..”oh govt officer is leaving” and stuff like that.. I smile and IGNORE….so chin up and dont worry… as long as u r doing your work well am sure your boss cannot complain

  24. garima says:

    Hey RM i hear you and understand how you feel.
    I dont have kids as of now still I would prefer going home on time once my work is done.Infact even before my marriage I was like that.I have my personal life which is equally important to me and sitting in office for late hours,if there is no work,makes no sense.
    I agree with RD that you do your work on time and dont think about what your colleauges are doing.They would not understand your problem as they cannot step into your shoes and think from your point of view.

    Chill and just concentrate on your work.

  25. Smita T says:

    There is no need to stay back ever… do you remember JK R’s boss… I have see that she used to come a talk to R if she stayed back 2 or 3 days in a row, to know what problem is there with the current project that she needs to saty back…

    I belive if the work cannot be completed in 8 hours then you have serious issues either with the quantity or quality of the employees on the team…

    And people do tp during the office hrs and then they stay back… also people schedule the emails to be sent late into night so that their boss will feel they are working late ( I am not saying that ur team does this)

    Dil pe mat le…. you are really a super woman, who does so many things in a day…. Love u dear…

  26. Pal says:

    Hey R’s Mom…this was my pet peeve when I was working! Sadly in India the expectation is that you must work late if u have to give the appearance of being hardworking. I knew of colleagues who would sit back after work hrs ny to enjoy the free Internet and then mail the work done to the boss just before leaving for home to show off that they were in office till such a late hour. It sucks! Also bachelors and young professionals have no commitments at home and hence prefer to stay back at work to chit chat and generally while time away. At the last org I worked in, it was a matrix structure where the team was sitting in multiple locations. Therefore in order to coordinate and get work done one would be having conference calls and team calls all day long and actually start of regular work like replying to mails etc only after 6 pm. It was a sad state of affairs that led me to conclude that if u want to enjoy other pursuits or have some time to spend at home then quitting is the best option. And i did this beore i had my child as i didnt want life to be all about chasing competition only to realise u never did the things you really wanted. Of course I was in a position to do so and was not loving my job so I took that path. In your case I think it’s best to ignore the subtle insinuations of other colleagues working late (while you’re not) and being the senior most member of the team add value in other ways as u would know more about the ins and outs of the system at your workplace than the newbies.This again largely smacks of the inherent issues of a paternalistic society where the men can ‘stayback’ at work as they have wives and mothers taking care of the mundane house chores & cooking , but what does a working mother do who has to deal with all this and also would like to retain her inancial independence & work? I think this is the reason why most women end up quitting their jobs once responsibilities at home increase or else always end up walking on a tightrope!

    • R's Mom says:

      Thank you for the comment…I am not at a stage where I can afford to leave my job honestly..and if I think about it, I am pretty satisfied at what I am..I dont aspire to become anything higher or anything..but just some days, you feel a sense of weirdness na! thats why the post I guess πŸ™‚

      Its true..working and home duties are like walking on a tight rope..

      and oh welcome here

      • Pal says:

        Hey R’s Mom, this is actually the 4th or 5th time that I’m commenting here but it’s always good to get your warm welcome πŸ™‚ ( Note to self: Make it a point to comment more often) I will never suggest that u quit, was just explaining the circumstances that led me and many others to quit. I admire your resilience and we honestly need more women like you to strive to stoke the balance. I often rue that I gave up too easily and in my current situation of living in a foreign land with a 2 yr old and no help, getting back to work is a distant dream. But it peeves me what our Indian work culture does to women. And then we rue that there are no women in top corporate positions when nothing much is done to create an environment conducive for us to continue working esp at mid- career levels when most women drop out of the workforce as their life responsibilities go up! U carry on with the great work of wearing the many hats that u do!! πŸ™‚

        • R's Mom says:

          aiyo have you 😦 Sorry…guess I am getting older eh?

          I often rue that I gave up too easily and in my current situation of living in a foreign land with a 2 yr old and no help, getting back to work is a distant dream – Nope I wouldnt say that..you took a decision which you felt was correct and doable…never feel guilty about it..big hugs to you

  27. Nithvin says:

    Have been coming across this issue being discussed in so many magazines and forums and now I read your first hand experience..I think we just have to stick to our priorities and yes, it is a sad thing like many have mentioned here that most of our jobs try to squeeze us out to the maximum possible extent..

  28. lifesong says:

    Hugs Hugs RM. I know this attitude … recently my workplace has also started the practice of “suitably recognizing” the efforts of people who put in extra hours of work beyond shift hours 😦
    As for me, I am not getting in this race. I believe in work life balance. I know it is so easy for single people to put in extra hours. I think such attitude will reduce the productivity of the staff rather than enhance it and create a ‘not so good’ atmosphere at workplace.

  29. Aaah. I have no kids and I still don’t think that I need to put in even a minute extra into work. I want to be able to come home, and stare at my fish tank for 2 hrs if I should. It is nobody’s business.

    But when we have deadlines approaching, and I am expected to put in extra time, I say I cannot stay back till late. If they want I can come early, so I go an hour early, which is still ok but I leave at my regular time. Which of course doesn’t help much and I am not bothered by them so much.

    If my manager brags about working the weekend, I brag about pub hopping with my friends(even if it is made up) and somebody or the other laughs at my manager for being a nerd without a life. The next time, I will use The Bride’s line.

    My point is, you are not insecure, they are. You are balanced, they aren’t. Sadly you will be called ‘just a mother’ but they will be called ’employees of the month’. Unfair? Totally!

  30. ARP says:

    Hey RM,

    Just don’t bother about your bosses comments and the late working guys. Its sad but true, the managers are most of the times incapable of judging difference between dedication and inefficiency. They treat ‘all time availability’ as a parameter to appraise instead of ‘quality of work done’. Just ignore!!

    Besides the bachelors are just digging their graves , since they will get married one or the other day and then wouldn’t be able to keep up with the bosses expectation. You on the other hand have set the expectations right already!

    • R's Mom says:

      Besides the bachelors are just digging their graves , since they will get married one or the other day and then wouldn’t be able to keep up with the bosses expectation – hey thats so true πŸ™‚

  31. uma says:

    Everyone has pretty much said what I’d have liked to say. Hugs, dear..I read this saying somewhere: “when in doubt, choose your family, work will always be there..”

  32. Pepper says:

    Hugs RM! I don’t know what to say. This really enrages me. It can only stop if we, collectively say ‘no’ to working late. But since working late does not bother people who have no responsibilities other than work, I doubt this will ever happen.

  33. Shweta says:

    Its not just a working mother who faces such situation at office.. I understand You have more responsibilities at home front.. Its irrespective of gender or marital status or Parent or not..
    Its between People who are efficient enough to complete the work assigned in as stipulated time and People who don’t and just stay back to show they are working more while they wander around during the day time.. (I am not talking about situations where people genuinely have to stay back and work).. We shall maintain a work life balance..
    This is against work ethics.. Though such Guys (specifically) add up by saying -” yaar meri team mein to married ladki hai.. unke humesha drame hote hain hume jaana hai .. humara ghar hai baccha hai and all and we end up doing their work” though during the day they spend half of their time – networking, going for a smoke or coffee..

    I have also worked at a client site and the work culture there is so different, Its only in India we face such situations… and there seem no solution to undo it. But I have made it a practice to say No to working Late until it is dire necessary even though am unmarried and don’t have a kid, also that does not mean I don’t have responsibilities back home..

    • R's Mom says:

      yaar meri team mein to married ladki hai.. unke humesha drame hote hain hume jaana hai – I have faced this..and its so frustrating I tell you!

      I loved your comment Shweta πŸ™‚ thanks

  34. chandni says:

    Hi RM! ell even if we keep your “working mom” issue aside, I don’t think there is anything “noble” about working late. I am in fact of the opinion that one should be able to finish work in the stipulated hours and that is efficiency! In fact, once a super boss appreciated by my co-worker for putting in long hours (to what end, is a mystery), and the guy nonchalantly replied that he stays back because he has nothing to do at home, while here he has internet and ac! That shut him up!

    • R's Mom says:

      , I don’t think there is anything β€œnoble” about working late. I am in fact of the opinion that one should be able to finish work in the stipulated hours and that is efficiency! – I agree..after reading all the comments that came through, I guess, I am mad…I shouldnt even be getting worried about this πŸ™‚

  35. it happens , the computers job i do , I have had emails at 2am or 3am in morning , how the hell are these people working so late.. dont they have family life..

    but on other hand the shift work is the same , I might grab a person half an hour before i have to leave and it can last for 2-3 hours and if i happen to be lucky and arrest more than one person at a time .. you can imagine how long that will take ot process..

    I would not worry it also shows Those guys need ot PUT more hours to finish a piece of work that you can do ON TIME.. slowly they will know that too.. you do it within time πŸ™‚

  36. Scribby says:

    I’ve my thoughts on this but I’ll have to write aram se…tonite!

  37. Sujatha says:

    Same pinch.. I too have this issue.. I will stay at office only for 8 hrs / day.. People will tease me if I stay more than 10 mins extra.. But I dont listen to all those.. And yes, there are many people who stay up very late after working hours but most of them dont do productive work at all.. They just do work-outs in gym, watch cricket matches and yes, they’ll send all the important mails only when they leave.. πŸ˜€
    I just ignore these kind of people.. For me my family is more important than work.. πŸ™‚

  38. kashlife says:

    My first comment in your blog RM.
    I too have experienced this in my job. Trust me none of these stay back’s will last long if these are just to please the management or for passing the time. And if the management is evaluating the employee’s performance based on these stay back kind of attitudes, then that is not a good management too.

  39. Smita says:

    I will take this out of “the working mother” context. I have hated sitting late even before I was married. My current boss luckily is of the point of view “The company pays me to work from 10:30-6 and I will not work a minute beyond that”. He comes in by 10:00 and leaves on dot 6 (unless it is an emergency) and the time that he is in office he gives his 100 percent and for me that is what matters.

    Unfortunately this doesn’t happen in the ideal world. The company were my Hubby used to work prev was the way the industry usually functions. Come in late, stay late and if you are coming -> you are the best worker; come on time & leaving on time -> u r inefficient. His colleagues used to saunter in after 12, take lunch at 1 and wud usually start working by 4pm. I say bullshit!!!!

    If you ask me I strongly feel that it is inefficient people who sit late, they waste time the whole day and then when it is time to go they start working and show as if there are working most in this company.

    You need not work to show others, do not sit late, work in the stipulated time (as u are already doing) and never forget to point out that you did your work and more than that. What time u sat for it is immaterial. Stop feeling insecure be confident of what you are doing and start giving back my dear.

    At the end of the day weigh both the things, Your daughter on one side and the feeling to compete (over who sat kitna de tak) with others and decide what you need to follow πŸ™‚

    • R's Mom says:

      loved your comment Smita…totally loved it..and I think I was wrong when I said its a working mother’s problem…I think for people who want to LIVE to live and not LIVE to work, coming and going on time is a priority..doesnt matter if you are married or you have a kid or you are a bachelor!

  40. Swaram says:

    Tell me abt it πŸ˜› I was in an all-men team and most of them bachelors! So they ofcos stayed late everyday to make use of the free internet at most times πŸ˜‰ I have stayed late on many days too, but usually made it a point to leave by 7-7.30! And this was a point one stupid brought out in our appraisal meetings. ‘See how those guys stay back. Looks like u r very happy with ur married life’ Exactly, he said that πŸ™„ I asked him if he had any problems with that and that was the end of his asking me the same πŸ˜€

  41. MaybornGemini says:

    Dont worry RM,.Your boss will know if you are not pulling your wieght and will definitely let you know.you are probably very productive in the 8.5 hrs you work, then you dont have to worry.
    I know what you mean though have been in the same situation before, it is frustrating when people get recognised for putting in long hrs …In tehe nd it si just a job,w e have families/kids to go back to we owe it to them to spend tiem with them.It si all about priorities, this is what I tell myself tooo.

  42. Sangitha says:

    I think it is something to bring up with your boss: asking what matters more, staying back late or getting your work done in time. Asking will mean people get aware of their own biases. And maybe start figuring out how much work gets done versus how many hours get put in.

  43. Sapna says:

    This is sadly true. But the good thing is you have a LIFE unlike those nerds sitting and working till 11 in the night πŸ™‚

  44. Jazz says:

    You know one of hubby’s teammates got married recently, and when we met them, his wife told me how he comes home very late daily, around 8 or 9. Your guess is right, he used to do that in his bachelor days. So now he has to go early and his staying back is gone for a hike.

    The company I work for has an average of 9.15 hrs policy, so people leave really early some days and stay real late to meet the average hrs deadline, to retain their leaves. You’ll not believe me people get an extra pair of clothes and stay back at night in the dormitory for this.

    But now some new rules have come up that one has to have a valid reason and also the manager’s approval to stay back late or use the dorm at night. πŸ™‚

  45. pixie says:

    I should’ve have de-lurked sooner!! 😐
    Anyways, I totally understand what you are saying. In one of my previous work places, I was harassed horribly just for NOT sitting late! Even though my work was excellent and there were no issues, I got bad ratings from the guy sitting onsite because he used to work late and stay back and prefer people like that with him!!
    I learnt my lesson. In my next company, I made it very clear that staying back is not an option and that if one stays back – it means they don’t know time management!! And thankfully, my managers were alos the sensible sort…
    But, its not a rant R’s mom and its a pretty serious issue.. Like most folks have already said it – don’t bother. Just keep doing your work and if anyone mentions it, then reply that you have a life and family outside of this office and since your work has been excellent thru out, it should be nobody’s business but yours that you leave office on time!

    Hugs! I really enjoy your posts!

    • R's Mom says:

      Oh My god! Pixie at my blog! wow πŸ™‚ thanks for delurking πŸ™‚

      I cant imagine being harrassed for not staying back..gosh what horrid people..big hugs rey!

      Yep, I guess, I have realised that since yesterday that I am not doing anything wrong at all…thanks

  46. Tanishka says:

    Hugs RM… I know that staying back late is considered as a sign of being a hard worker but they also forget to see the amount of work done in that time… Unfortunately they just get blinded by number hours given rather than amount of work done which is the right parameter for judging performance…

  47. NBose says:

    Hugs Dear…I can understand how you must be feeling..i had also fell for this ‘staying back’ trap when i have worked for 11-12 hrs for consecutive days…but believe me that makes no sense today when I look back. It would all matter how efficiently you work and manage the deadlines…and if these subtle hints becomes more prominent in your appraisal discussion, you can always prove your stand by this simple logic ‘if you complete A-B-C task in 8.5 hrs and the other person ‘stays back’ and completes this task in 11 hrs…who is more efficient?’
    RD is right…just work those 8.5 hrs well..that’s it.
    somehow i remember a letter sent by Narayana Murthy to his Infosys employees about staying back in office..found the link from google:
    Cheer up girl!!! Don’t feel insecure..You are such a super-lady who manages ‘home -office- kid- daily commute- blog’ so proficiently πŸ˜€

  48. Shweta says:

    Hey RM,

    First of all big hug to you! I completely empatize with you and it is indeed a very complicated spot to be in. And yes, it can get frustrating.

    But tell you what! You are really someone whom I can consider as a role model. You are managing both your personal and professional lives so well. Given that you don’t budge out out of the office till you get your work done, speaks volumes of your dedication and sincerity. Plus it clearly shows you are extremely ethical and doing your work responsibly whether or not the boss appreciates. And that is something everybody cannot manage to achieve. You are an excellent mother, a good wife and you manage both your work and home fantastically. You have never deprived your family when they needed you nor you have left your work unattended. Trust me, there are people who dont do even 20% of what you do and still complain that they havent got enough time on their hands.*You are doing a great job RM*. Give yourself credit for it and please relax.

    From my experience, it is very natural for us to get frustrated like this when we see others working late, because we get self doubts whether we are right or are we missing something. We feel guilty though we are giving our 100%. In the past it has helped me a lot when i interact with others indirectly (in this case your boss and your colleagues) to know the root cause of the problem. For example the colleagues might be working late because they have a pressure of a deadline to meet or that they’re completely doing it on their own because they are passionate about their work.

    May be it will help if you have a casual 1:1 with your boss to find out about the situation. You are completing your work perfectly on time, without backlogs despite having a hectic personal life when compared to your colleagues. So I am sure you are meeting/ even exceeding your boss’expectations!

    Please do not have self doubts RM. You are a wonderful human being and I really mean it when I say it. Once again, Kudos to your dedication and sincerity. If you were not sincere you would have never in the first place felt frustrated. I

    Tight hugs to you again:) Really pray to God that you come out of this frustrating mood soon and you are back to your cheerful self again:)

    • R's Mom says:

      Gosh Shweta…Thanks for giving me so many compliments *blush* I am not that great rey..there are millions of other people in Bombay who do million times of more than I do πŸ™‚

      From my experience, it is very natural for us to get frustrated like this when we see others working late, because we get self doubts whether we are right or are we missing something. We feel guilty though we are giving our 100% – This is exactly whats happening to me I think…I guess, most people are right in commenting that what I am doing is not wrong πŸ™‚ so there, you guys make me feel so much better πŸ™‚

      Hugs right back..thanks for the lovely lovely comment πŸ™‚

  49. Shweta says:

    And I forgot to add. In my previous team, I had this best manager who insisted we do not work late. Not even the bachelors. He believed that when you can finish your work efficiently between 9AM to 6PM, why stay back and show-off? There were some bachelors who would prefer coming late and leave late as they wanted to relax and not wake up early. But he strongly discouraged it and insisted we all prove ourselves efficient in the regular office hours.

    So it only goes to prove that you are efficient RM.

    Wishing and praying you have these problems solved ASAP:)

  50. Hi R’s Mom- This is a serious issue and needs to be discussed. You are a sincere worker, you like your work and that is clear the way you manage doing it along with long commute and parenting a small child. Work + family makes you complete. For a good work-life balance you prefer to come to work early and spend the evening with your family. That is the best option also.
    Lets now discuss the hard fact- at work place specially in countries like US and India working late is considered as a good working practice. Believe me in Europe (most of the places) things are much different, family/hobbies/personal space takes over after 6 pm. Anyway now the people who are managing your work are far away (their work day start in your late afternoon) and through general human tendency they are ‘preferring/praising the available’ person. Also may be they are overwhelmed and thankful to the people who are staying back in India as they would not have done it on their part. I am also working in a KPO and I have noticed this tendency of thankfulness in our (US/European) clients. This might make you little less visible in the group. Although it is told to women to ignore such issues and that family comes first but as a genuine worker this enrages me more. As I expect more from my work life.
    Work space of India needs to be changed a lot for women, but for that we need women to stay in her work and acquire that position slowly when she can bring changes. So don’t think of leaving R’s Mom. We need you to bring better work lives for our daughters.

    Your issue needs strategic outlook and not idealistic or emotional one. I have figured some ways out in my work life; sharing them with you.
    1. Discuss with your colleagues about their work. Understand what they are doing. Why they are staying work because their work needs it or because they want to get noticed. Understand them.
    2. Figure out whether in your scope of work it is necessary to stay late, will it help you to chase the deadlines better? Talk with your US boss more about the quality of work you are doing. Show more enthusiasm and initiative to her/him in your work. Take new responsibilities which you think will be okay for you to handle.
    3. Consider sending milestone/achievement mails to your US/India boss once in a quarter. When you get good comments for your work share that mail with your Indian boss/group colleagues. They will come to know that there are other methods to do work properly than staying late.
    4. Sometimes when work is spread over 2-3 countries and when teleconferences are required to be held, it is important that all members are present and staying late may become necessary in the office. Tell yourself that in a week 1-2 days you might need to stay late. If you are staying late do make a point to send this message to your US/India bosses and colleagues so they will know that it is not something that you cannot do at all. Stay with good mood and vigour – don’t crib.
    5. Don’t make a habit of staying late though. Check your office mails at least once after coming back home and do send some replies if required, thus giving the bosses positive feedback about your work ethics. This will take 10-15 min of your personal time. Much better option than staying back in the office.
    6. Don’t feel guilt on days you need to stay back, tell yourself that you are trying to find a way which will help your daughter in her work-life balance. Tell your husband to co-operate. Just like you cherish your family your family should also cherish your work.
    7. Initiate and concentrate on extra activities like training the juniors, business development strategies and arranging seminars and workshops, this will make you visible even while working in the office hours.
    Although my comment is contrast to what everyone else is saying here. But I believe sometimes serious work do need extra hours/enthusiasm just like some times family needs more attention. I Hope this will give you some help.
    Happy working R’s Mom!

    • R's Mom says:

      Thanks for the lovely comment..nope I dont think your comment is in constrast, it just tells us the RIGHT way to balance..thank you so much…this means a LOT to me!

  51. metherebel says:

    It is sad that people think you are hard worker if you stay back late in office! It could be that they don’t do anything all day and that is why they stay back late πŸ™‚ At my office if people stay back late, they expect the office to hire a cab and drop them home because there is no public transport after 9pm (advantages of staying in a small town) πŸ™‚ The office does not approve very much of this idea of hiring a cab!

    • R's Mom says:

      I guess the cab facilities are available in some offices which is good..but then, I can understand the office not approving of hiring a cab..so people work and leave on time eh?

      • metherebel says:

        Yes people work and leave on time unless it is very important task. And they aren’t appreciated if they stay back late which means only time the boss writes to you is when there is a client escalation, demanding your explanation πŸ˜‰

  52. Sreetama says:

    All I can say is, don’t fall for this trap. If a company decides an employee’s efficiency on the basis of the number of (extra) hours put, it is a very sad situation indeed. It is easy for bachelor guys to stay back as they can enjoy the virtues of free AC, Internet, coffee, snacks from the cafeteria etc. But for a truly efficient person like you, who knows her job, makes the day plan right at the start of the day and meets the line, I don’t think putting extra hours is necessary at all. In fact management should give a warning to such stay backers that you will have to pay fine if you stay back as because of you, there is over usage of electricity, internet and other such office resources. There was a lovely mail, a speech by Narayan Moorthy on the same issue. I will forward it to you. Don’t worry RM. Your efficiency cannot and will not be questioned on the basis of unnecessary extra hours put.

    In my office also there is this awful culture of men staying back till late, including our boss. I always prefer to live on time but somehow I cannot due to some or the other reasons. But I Keep trying… Hugs RM! Hope you will be out of this confusing situation soon.

  53. Very warm hugs to you RM!!!could not agree with you more…Your post has such a effect made me to drop in here and tell you “You are such a super duper lady”..reached home @9 worked till 1 and got up at 4:45 and made such an awesome post..Hey..among all this hectic work..how do you manage everything..
    Hey..don’t blame these guys.. they have nothing else to do so they stay back. Just have a look at their busy schedule.What these guys would do..come on time..have breakfast for 45 mins..check the news..stockprice..FB etc time for tea break..20 mins..come back..start checking office mails..oh..it’s lunch time..(for 1.5 hour),on fridays its for 2.5 hour..come back start work..oh very sleepy..coffee break again..20 miins..feeling fresh now..lets do some work for an hour..then will goto play TT. come back Hey..RM..you are now leaving..ok then I will send the consolidated mail..bye-bye,,now..they will begin their work..and now..they will work. So, in total..they will work only for 4 hours a day..So, you know who works better..and any sensible manager would also know.&
    you also know what you do with 5 mins of tea break &30-45 mins of lunch break.(i have squeezed to 15 mins 😦 by going alone)

    So, don’t think much..you know you do more than 100%..so, avoid taking your work to home.I am in a foreign land now..working with clients..who expect everybody to stay late ..everybody stays late..but I don’t . I have my daughter who is in day care which closes by 7.In any damn situation, whether an important call/meeting..if it reaches my deadline time..I speak up and say..I have to leave. Whatever they think..I can’t help.
    My husband is back in India..I am managing here..with my daughter..and no support..could not afford to blog. But,yes..every morning..good to see your wonderful post..I will have lots of things to say in each of your post but could not afford ..This topic made me wake up at 4:15 am and write here..ya-ya for you this is your usual time.
    everyday..I plan to get up by 7 but end up getting by 8 :(i now know how to be more efficient..is : sleep less and start a day with plan.So, today..no dashing off to bed after posting this comment..Thanks to you RM..Love you.

    • R's Mom says:

      Aiyo! you are such a sweetie..go go back to sleep okie?

      you are great yaar..managing a kiddo and work alone…that too in phoren land..I could never do that…so love and hugs right back… πŸ™‚

  54. techie2mom says:

    Hey RM, Hugs to you… you know before Zini came, i was the late-staying type. (the culture in our team was of late staying, coz everybody in our team was either bachelors or didn’t have kids)..but now that i have Zini and i am on the other side of fence, i realize how difficult it is for a mother who also works outside home…
    i think you are a superhuman to wake up so early and then do all the task at home and then do your work at office, blog and travel everyday in mumbai local…you have inspired me (and probably many others) to do a lot of things. All the best for whatever you decide to do πŸ™‚

    • R's Mom says:

      Thanks rey…I can understand that wanting to go back on time so much..but honestly I am no superwoman..there are millions of ladies in Bombay who do much more than I do, and yet dont even crib about me…me, I just keep cribbing on the blog πŸ™‚

  55. Jada says:

    Call Center

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