Larry Scheinfeld: Mark Zuckerberg Does the Unthinkable; Takes Time Off for Maternity Leave

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced news that came as a shock the public, he’d be taking two months off from work in preparation for the birth of his daughter.

Zuckerberg is making a leave that is unheard of in the fast-paced startup world, especially for one of the most aggressive and hard working senior leaders of today in tech. His decision is a clear testament to managing your work-life balance, especially within the startup culture.

Larry Scheinfeld Story

The Facebook Founder only took half of the allotted time for paternal leave but with this time he sets a precedence not only for company culture but other CEOs as well. Zuckerberg announced his leave on Facebook:

“Priscilla and I are starting to get ready for our daughter’s arrival. We’ve been picking out our favorite childhood books and toys.

We’ve also been thinking about how we’re going to take time off during the first months of her life. This is a very personal decision, and I’ve decided to take 2 months of paternity leave when our daughter arrives.

Studies show that when working parents take time to be with their newborns, outcomes are better for the children and families. At Facebook we offer our US employees up to 4 months of paid maternity or paternity leave which they can take throughout the year.

Every day things are getting a little more real for us, and we’re excited to start this next stage in our lives.”

Though Zuckerberg is one of the few executives to take an absence from their role for personal matters, more businesses are beginning to cater to the personal needs of their staff.

Just recently, Netflix offers unlimited paid parental leave. Their policy is gender-neutral and applies to the first year after a child’s birth. News of Netflix’s corporate decision spread quickly and soon after, Amazon introduced a similar luxury.

FAcebook Office

Amazon will offer paid paternity leave to new parents who have worked for the company for at least a year with up to six weeks of paid leave, regardless of gender. The new company policy also allows for new birth mothers to take up to 20 weeks off.

The corporate culture trend is inevitably steering the industry towards better productivity and team cohesiveness. It shows employees that they’re appreciated as a staff member and their lifestyle and well-being is also of value to the business.