It's Harry Potter's 20 year anniversary today and we're feeling both nostalgic and appreciative for the wonder woman that is JK Rowling.
Not only did she capture the imagination of an entire generation, but she also created a world without gender disparity in the most subtle and nuanced way.
Because of this, her female characters came to represent a cast of inspirational women for young millennials reading the potterverse to look up to. And since the Potter's end Rowling, Emma Watson and co. have become outspoken feminist icons. Indeed, Rowling is now worth an estimated one billion dollars and is one of our most celebrated examples of self made success - (we also happen to adore her blatant negation of gender tropes and passion for calling out misogyny via Twitter).
Below we round-up tweets that make for fabulous female reading, between the cast, writers and potter lovers. Happy anniversary to all.
@Evy_Lynch You're a goddess.
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) September 2, 2014
Yass Luna. You are a goddess.
The Harry Potter books, according to Hermione#pottermore #HarryPotter pic.twitter.com/YBswrVeHDD
— L.E. DeLano (@LE_DeLano) June 18, 2017
... Hermione conquers the world.
— Minerva McGonagall (@McGonagallBot) May 2, 2017
Queens Molly and Minerva to the rescue.
The #HarryPotter series wouldn't exist if @jk_rowling had given up after failing: https://t.co/vxAEph5ZYr She's such an inspiration! pic.twitter.com/B4jW1VhXAm
— FilterCopy (@filtercopy) June 11, 2017
SWAAY lives and breathes this motto everyday. Keep trying and you will succeed.
Professor McGonagall and Luna Lovegood are such boss ass bitches.
— Isenea Lee (@isenealee) June 10, 2017
I saw Helena Bonham Carter in the street today and I immediately fell over as I was so excited #BELLATRIX #icklebicklebabypottah pic.twitter.com/n5iTSlkrl4
— mhairi (@mhairi_m) June 13, 2017
*Cackling* we do too, honey.
"Anything is possible if you've got enough nerve." #HarryPotterWomen #JKRowling #InternationalWomensDay [art not mine] pic.twitter.com/HRRMQ3b2zg
— Pim W. (@PimKaprao) March 8, 2017
Truer words were never spoken.
When someone talks bad about friends or family #Potterheads #HarryPotter #HermioneGranger #DracoMalfoy #TomFelton #EmmaWatson ?? pic.twitter.com/KCl8qmhRqe
— Slytherin_Felton ? (@fandegregpernia) May 30, 2017
That's what you get for messing with this chick, Draco.
femaleness is not a design flaw. If your immediate response to a woman who displeases you 12/14
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 9, 2017
And the tweet of the year goes to...
Jk Rowling on Twitter yesterday pic.twitter.com/nYDlhdGOiO
— Harry Potter GIFs (@HP_GIFs) October 8, 2014
Because being right feels good, right?
Only time Hermione had to be saved, she left the tips on how to save her. #HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets #HermioneGranger #Potterhead https://t.co/iE88qg8sJi
— Leandro Freythas (@leandrofreythas) May 30, 2017
She. Don't. Need. A. Man.
It's impossible to live w/out failing at something... #JKRowling https://t.co/jGSI0lyrRC pic.twitter.com/otURc5i73G
— Brian D Colwell (@BColwell_ECON) June 7, 2017
Try, fail, try again, and keep trying. That's what we're best at.
— Brittany Hale ?️? (@BrittanyKHale) May 31, 2017
OMG. Those Horcruxes would never have been found.
Who wants to be a #princess when you can be a #warriorprincess like #hermionegranger emmawatson… https://t.co/ILPhiLcgtQ
— Ms. Trevor Moon (@teacher22973) May 22, 2017
Let us bow to warrior princess Granger.
New parents re-entering the workforce are often juggling the tangible realities of daycare logistics, sleep deprivation, and a cascade of overwhelming work. No matter how parents build their family, they often struggle with the guilt of being split between home and work and not feeling exceptionally successful in either place.
Women building their families often face a set of challenges different from men. Those who have had children biologically may be navigating the world of pumping at work. Others might feel pulled in multiple directions when bringing a child into their home after adoption. Some women are trying to learn how to care for a newborn for the first time. New parents need all the help they can get with their transition.
Women returning to work after kids sometimes have to address comments such as:
"I didn't think you'd come back."
"You must feel so guilty."
"You missed a lot while you were out."
To counteract this difficult situation, women are finding mentors and making targeting connections. Parent mentors can help new moms address integrating their new life realities with work, finding resources within the organization and local community, and create connections with peers.
There's also an important role for parent mentors to play in discussing career trajectory. Traditionally, men who have families see more promotions compared to women with children. Knowing that having kids may represent a career setback for women, they may work with their mentors to create an action plan to "back on track" or to get recognized for their contributions as quickly as possible after returning to work.
Previously, in a bid to accommodate mothers transitioning back to work, corporate managers would make a show at lessoning the workload for newly returned mothers. This approach actually did more harm than good, as the mother's skills and ambitions were marginalized by these alleged "family friendly" policies, ultimately defining her for the workplace as a mother, rather than a person focused on career.
Today, this is changing. Some larger organizations, such as JP Morgan Chase, have structured mentorship programs that specifically target these issues and provide mentors for new parents. These programs match new parents navigating a transition back to work with volunteer mentors who are interested in helping and sponsoring moms. Mentors in the programs do not need to be moms, or even parents, themselves, but are passionate about making sure the opportunities are available.
It's just one other valuable way corporations are evolving when it comes to building quality relationships with their employees – and successfully retaining them, empowering women who face their own set of special barriers to career growth and leadership success.
Mentoring will always be a two way street. In ideal situations, both parties will benefit from the relationship. It's no different when women mentor working mothers getting back on track on the job. But there a few factors to consider when embracing this new form of mentorship
How to be a good Momtor?
Listen: For those mentoring a new parent, one of the best strategies to take is active listening. Be present and aware while the mentee shares their thoughts, repeat back what you hear in your own words, and acknowledge emotions. The returning mother is facing a range of emotions and potentially complicated situations, and the last thing she wants to hear is advice about how she should be feeling about the transition. Instead, be a sounding board for her feelings and issues with returning to work. Validate her concerns and provide a space where she can express herself without fear of retribution or bull-pen politics. This will allow the mentee a safe space to sort through her feelings and focus on her real challenges as a mother returning to work.
Share: Assure the mentee that they aren't alone, that other parents just like them are navigating the transition back to work. Provide a list of ways you've coped with the transition yourself, as well as your best parenting tips. Don't be afraid to discuss mothering skills as well as career skills. Work on creative solutions to the particular issues your mentee is facing in striking her new work/life balance.
Update Work Goals: A career-minded woman often faces a new reality once a new child enters the picture. Previous career goals may appear out of reach now that she has family responsibilities at home. Each mentee is affected by this differently, but good momtors help parents update her work goals and strategies for realizing them, explaining, where applicable, where the company is in a position to help them with their dreams either through continuing education support or specific training initiatives.
Being a role model for a working mother provides a support system, at work, that they can rely on just like the one they rely on at home with family and friends. Knowing they have someone in the office, who has knowledge about both being a mom and a career woman, will go a long way towards helping them make the transition successfully themselves.