Microsoft Mom Revolutionizes Workplace Support for Returning Parents

Inspired by her own experiences and fueled by a desire to effect change, Jagelski embarked on a mission to revolutionize the workplace support system for returning parents. With the backing of Microso...
Microsoft Mom Revolutionizes Workplace Support for Returning Parents
Written by Staff
  • In the bustling corridors of Microsoft’s Advertising Division, Erin Jagelski, a seasoned senior sales director, isn’t just closing deals; she’s also opening doors for parents navigating the often treacherous terrain of returning to work after childbirth.

    With an aura of empathy and a natural talent for listening, Jagelski understands the nuanced challenges working parents face, having experienced them firsthand. She’s not just an executive; she’s a champion for parental support within one of the world’s leading tech conglomerates.

    “I do think that I have the gift of listening to people,” Jagelski reflects on a Microsoft employee-focused video podcast. “And I think at the end of the day, that’s what people want: is to be heard.”

    For Jagelski, her journey into parenthood and professional life intersected at a pivotal moment when she returned to Microsoft shortly after welcoming her first child into the world. The decision was fraught with excitement and apprehension, but one thing was clear: she needed a community of support.

    “I always wanted to be a mom, but it’s hard,” Jagelski admits candidly. “Despite having an amazing team and an amazing leave, I returned ready. I wanted to work.”

    And work she did with the vigor and determination characteristic of a Microsoft executive. Yet, as she soon discovered, the sprint of corporate life can quickly turn into a marathon, leaving even the most ambitious professionals gasping for breath.

    “I wanted to sprint. And you can only sprint for so long until you fall down,” she reflects on the challenges of balancing career aspirations with the demands of parenthood.

    During this period of introspection and self-discovery, Jagelski found solace in Microsoft’s commitment to supporting new parents through comprehensive maternity and paternity leave policies. This dedication to family values struck a chord with Jagelski, igniting a passion for empowering returning parents within the corporate landscape.

    “I had a mentor that suggested, ‘Hey, why don’t you lean into the women of Microsoft?'” Jagelski recounts. “I really found my community there, and it gave me some support in returning to a corporate motion I didn’t have initially.”

    Inspired by her own experiences and fueled by a desire to effect change, Jagelski embarked on a mission to revolutionize the workplace support system for returning parents. With the backing of Microsoft’s women’s initiatives, she spearheaded the launch of a return-to-work program within the Advertising Division—a grassroots effort aimed at providing parents with the resources, guidance, and mentorship needed to navigate the complex transition back into the workforce.

    “I was given the opportunity to participate in the maternity program, which is a grassroots employee group created by women for other women in Microsoft,” Jagelski explains. “And we have now built that with, again, an amazing group of women, men, and caregivers across the company to support each other and to build communities in these individual organizations.”

    The response was overwhelming. Parents, caregivers, and allies from across the company rallied behind Jagelski’s initiative, eager to lend their support and share their experiences.

    “We put a call out to the community in Microsoft advertising and said, ‘Who would like to be a mentor, who has been through this and thinks that they have the insight to share and who needs support?'” Jagelski recalls. “And I think opening up the conversation was definitely opening a door.”

    Indeed, what started as a simple conversation blossomed into a movement characterized by empathy, vulnerability, and solidarity. Through her tireless advocacy and unwavering dedication, Jagelski is not just reshaping Microsoft’s future of work but also paving the way for a more inclusive and supportive corporate culture—one where every parent feels heard, understood, and empowered to thrive.

    “When you get vulnerable with others, it allows them to get vulnerable back,” Jagelski observes. “Other people will lean in, too, because you’re going to find your community.”

    In Jagelski’s vision, vulnerability begets community, and community fosters resilience. Through her leadership and unwavering commitment to supporting returning parents, she’s not just redefining the narrative of parenthood in the workplace; she’s rewriting it altogether.

    Get the WebProNews newsletter delivered to your inbox

    Get the free daily newsletter read by decision makers

    Advertise with Us

    Ready to get started?

    Get our media kit