Ivanka Trump has cultivated an image of female empowerment through her fashion company’s tagline, “Women Who Work,” and her new book of the same title.
In the White House, as one of President Donald Trump’s top advisers, she has taken that tagline one step further by pushing for policies that would benefit women, such as federal paid family leave.
But Trump wasn’t aways a supporter of family leave policies.
In fact, just four years ago, she expected women to immediately return to work after giving birth, according to a report in The New York Times.
Marissa Kraxberger, a former executive for Trump’s fashion company, told the Times that she asked Trump about paid leave when she was pregnant in the summer of 2013.
Kraxberger recalled Trump as saying: “Well, we don’t have maternity leave policy here; I went back to work one week after having my child, so that’s just not something I’m used to.”
Afterwards, Kraxberger and others pushed Trump to adopt a paid leave policy, but the company didn’t implement one until the following year, according to the Times.
The company now offers two months of paid family leave and flexible working hours. Her office also now has a play area for children.
In her new book, out Tuesday, Trump describes her journey in coming to terms with the pressures of having children and continuing to work.
As a new mother, she initially kept her family life private and didn’t allow her work life and home life to overlap.
“It took me a while to have the confidence to know that my authenticity as a mother with young children doesn’t undermine my professional capabilities or my toughness at the negotiating table,” she writes, according to an excerpt published by Fortune.
She says she is now trying to be more open about the roles she plays — both executive and mother — and better integrate those roles to try and be a better model to other working mothers.
“One of the ways I’m setting an example for a different kind of corporate culture in my company is by involving my kids — and spending quality time with them at the office,” she writes. “By occasionally bringing my kids to the office, I’m sharing what I love to do with them but also sending the message to my team that I prioritise my family and they can, too.”
Trump announced in January that she would be taking a leave of absence from her jobs at the Trump Organisation and her fashion line. In March, Trump took a formal role as an unpaid adviser to the president and has an office in the White House.
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