About ten years ago, Karen Cooper decided to take her boss to lunch. She was a successful technical recruiter for a Cincinnati company pulling in six figures. But she was also a single mother of two boys, one of whom required a lot of extra attention due to his cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Cooper often had to request work-from-home days in order to care for her son.
“His episodes would occur during the night,” Cooper explains. “Then he can’t go to school, so I need to be there.”
But her requests to work from home were not well received. Cooper says it was always a “big deal” when she asked for that flexibility, even though her work could easily be done from her home office. She figured it would help to discuss the issue with her manager face-to-face over lunch.