“Maternity remains generally perceived as a setback in the relationship between a female executive and her employer,” notes Apec. pixdeluxe/Getty Images
Three-quarters of female executives who have had children consider that maternity leave slows down women's hierarchical progression "for several years", according to a survey published Thursday by the Association pour l' employment of executives (Apec).
Nearly one in two female executives considers that their return to work was difficult (and even "very difficult" for 14% of female executives) , according to this survey carried out by the CSA institute among 840 female executives who had at least one child over the last ten years.
"Maternity remains generally perceived as a setback in the relationship between a woman executive and her employer", notes l& ;#39;Apec.
In certain companies, maternity leave is "reduced to a penalizing absence, a problem to be resolved, instead of being considered as a logical and predictable step in the professional career of women", continues the & #39;organism.
Also, "during their maternity leave, some female executives continue to be connected with their company to varying degrees (monitoring emails or clients, attendance at certain online meetings), contrary to legal obligation.
More than seven in ten women returning from maternity leave "talk about the difficulty of coping with their workload despite fatigue". Many have not been replaced systematically or often during their absence, with the risk of an early return or an overload of work upon return with the danger of exhaustion for the resumption of position.
Conversely, "if the replacement took place in good conditions, the risk is rather that of not finding his initial position.
A risk of placarding
Some women undergo "a progressive invisibilization, a closeting", continues the Apec which notes that "all of these risks are accentuated in the event of long parental leave".
According to another Apec survey carried out in December among 2,000 executives, 44% of men consider that inequalities between the two sexes within companies have been reduced over the past five years. Only 15% of women hold this opinion.
When we question women and men, half of the respondents believe that the professional development of female executives is hampered by the fact of having young children . If the parent is a man, only one in four respondents believe that their career will be hampered.
Finally, while Emmanuel Macron announced in January the creation of shorter but better paid birth leave than current parental leave, 69% of respondents would prefer parental leave " short and well paid" to a "long but poorly paid" leave.