ERIKA'S MATERNITY LEAVE
At the beginning of the nineties, we had just moved to our new premises in Rott-Pessenhausen, I offered Erika, who had been with me in production for many years, the position of "production management". She was the ideal employee. Never sick, always reliable, super accurate, popular with the laboratory team. She endured the worst stress without being seen. Finally I was able to drive away with the knowledge that everything will go well!
After four years of additional work as an architect and construction worker in the renovation of my over 800 year old farm, now was the time to exhale. An ideal timing to get pregnant. After the result was clear, I took a 4-month "break" and visited all of my raw material projects worldwide.
I didn't want the baby or toddler to endure such strenuous journeys. Shortly before my departure, I was at the end of the third month, I confessed the pregnancy to my employees. Everyone was happy, thought that this was the best possible time for me, or better: high time, since I was already 36. Only Erika looked a little pale at this message and entered - I quickly found out that she was pregnant in the second month.
Well, she shouldn't be worried, we'll swing that left! I thought and maybe said it too. The day after Erika went on statutory maternity leave, my son was born by caesarean section. I was in the hospital for a week. Production was at a standstill, another week, I couldn't even think about running. When the third week came and we hardly had any more goods in stock, I dragged myself to the laboratory with all sorts of supports wrapped around my stomach. My son slept in the stroller in front of the laboratory door. I used to mock about these employer-unfriendly maternity protection measures, and now I was able to experience firsthand how it feels for a mother. As a boss, you just have a fresh operation in the laboratory, even though it was really hard! How good maternity leave would have been for me and my son. Luckily Erika had a spontaneous birth, and as a motivated employee she was soon back in the laboratory. I always like to tell this story when an employee complains.