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There is a growing movement, especially amongst middle class modern men, to take a greater involvement in the day-to-day raising of their children. Great, you might think, and in many ways it is: the previous generation has suffered by having stand-offish fathers who were only called on to write cheques or to discipline their brood. However, there are those who worry that this new trend is going a step too far and could spell danger for our industry and businesses. Bill O'Toole is a part-time cook and dad to two small children: “I didn't want to work full-time after my kids were born, I wanted to share in bringing them up. My partner and I share the childcare and it works for us.” This may sound ideal, a 50-50 arrangement where everyone is happy.
However, Patrick Cannon has a different view. He is company director for a chain of 100 retail stores: “I want my staff to be happy and productive. But I have a major problem with women going off on maternity leave, I still have to pay them and often they turn around and say they're not coming back. Now I'm starting to have the same issues with men. I need people who are fully committed to the job, not who quit just because they 'don't want' to work.”
With the country in recession, don't we need to seriously look at people's work ethic here?