The Paternity Paradox
About Talking Talent's research
This is the 1st edition of Talking Talent’s working parents survey in Asia-Pacific, which is part of the global series ‘Expecting more than a baby’. Talking Talent surveyed 1,000 working parents in five separate Asia-Pacific countries (Australia, China, Hong Kong, India and Singapore) born between 1956 and 2000.
The research provides insight into what really happens when life meets work for working parents in Asia-Pacific - the pressures, views on parental leave and how well their workplace supports parents.
We provide suggestions on how organisations can reduce stigma and shift workplace culture around parental leave for both men and women, as well as flexible working policies and practices. The latter being critical to future proofing employee the business and culture.
Fathers are piecing together their parental leave experience
In our study, we uncovered several key themes across Asia-Pacific that illustrated major shifts in perceptions and the experiences faced following paternity leave. Explore the top 3 themes for Dad’s below or download the specific country report.
Parental responsibility v career progression
Making it more attractive for fathers to take parental leave is key to mothers being able to progress in their careers. However, almost half of respondents agree that fathers who take extended parental leave find it has a detrimental effect on their careers.
Pressures to return early
More than half (54%) of fathers have taken shorter parental leave than they would have liked. These findings indicate that initiatives such as shared parental leave may not be of help to half the male workforce in the region.
After having returned to work, it’s not just mothers that feel guilty, fathers do too. Over two thirds (68%) feel professional pressures now negatively impact their ability to be the parent they’d like to be, whilst three-in-five (57%) feel guilty that they don’t spend enough time with their children.
The parental leave reality
There is no question that fathers are now facing the same difficulties that mothers have encountered for generations when it comes to balancing work and children. And it will always be that - a balancing act. Here are the top 5 experiences both mothers and fathers share the same view in across Asia-Pacific.
- Work pressures often negatively impact their ability to be parent they want to be
- Spending enough quality time with children was a challenge as a working parent
- Keeping an interesting job role while being a parent is difficult
- They expect that their own child(ren)s generation will find it just as hard as their generation to balance work and parenting
- Financial pressure was the greatest challenge when they first returned to work
Interested in reading more?
Follow the links below to DOWNLOAD an infographic comparing the experiences of mothers and fathers in Asia-Pacific:
- Skills needed to boost career progression
- Skills increased / decreased following becoming a parent
- Greatest challenges upon returning to work after parental leave
- Past work-life challenges
- Time spent with children
- Requests for flexible working
- Agree / disagree statement infographic ONE
- Agree / disagree statement infographic TWO