New dads need a nudge to take leave

As more companies adopt generous paternity leave policies, they are running into a familiar obstacle: Convincing new dads that it’s okay to take the time off, according to The Wall Street Journal.

One in three men say they worry taking paternity leave will have a detrimental effect on their careers, and over half of respondents said they worried taking their full allotment of time would signal a lack of commitment, according to a survey by Deloitte.
Companies including Facebook, American Express and Twitter have launched campaigns and support groups to encourage new dads to take leave.
There’s a business case for such efforts: Those who take parental leave end up missing work less often and are ultimately more productive when they return from leave.

Parental leave
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Parental leave or family leave is an employee benefit available in almost all countries. The term “parental leave” generally includes maternity, paternity, and adoption leave. A distinction between “maternity leave” and “parental leave” is sometimes made- maternity leave as the mother’s leave time directly before and after childbirth and parental leave being the time given to care for newborns. In some countries and jurisdictions, “family leave” also includes leave provided to care for ill family members. Often, the minimum benefits and eligibility requirements are stipulated by law.

Unpaid parental or family leave is provided when an employer is required to hold an employee’s job while that employee is taking leave. Paid parental or family leave provides paid time off work to care for or make arrangements for the welfare of a child or dependent family member. The three most common models of funding are social insurance/social security (where employees, employers, or taxpayers in general contribute to a specific public fund), employer liability (where the employer must pay the employee for the length of leave), and mixed policies that combine both social security and employer liability.

Parental leave has been available as a legal right and/or governmental program for many years, in one form or another. In 2014, the International Labour Organization reviewed parental leave policies in 185 countries and territories, and found that all countries except Papua New Guinea have laws mandating some form of parental leave.[4] A different study showed that of 186 countries examined, 96% offered some pay to mothers during leave, but only 81 of those countries offered the same for fathers. The United States, Suriname, Papua New Guinea, and several island countries in the Pacific Ocean are the only countries that do not require employers to provide paid time off for new parents.

Private employers sometimes provide either or both unpaid and paid parental leave outside of or in addition to any legal mandate.

Where does Walmart stand?

Walmart, the world’s largest retailer and largest private employer, is increasingly weighing in on political issues like immigration, reports The Wall Street Journal. Previously, U.S. CEOs and boards didn’t have to weigh in on such topics, but that’s changing, says associate professor Lawrence Parnell at George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management. Walmart’s chief marketing officer Tony Rogers told reporters last month that around 72% of Walmart shoppers want the company to “take a stand on important social issues” and 85% want them to “make it clear what values you stand for.” Walmart is “embracing public positions” in some instances to improve its reputation with customers and attract new clientele as it competes with Amazon, says the Journal.

Walmart
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Walmart Inc. (formerly branded as Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.) is an American multinational retail corporation that operates a chain of hypermarkets, discount department stores, and grocery stores. Headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas, the company was founded by Sam Walton in 1962 and incorporated on October 31, 1969. It also owns and operates Sam’s Club retail warehouses. As of January 31, 2018, Walmart has 11,718 stores and clubs in 28 countries, operating under 59 different names. The company operates under the name Walmart in the United States and Canada, as Walmart de México y Centroamérica in Mexico and Central America, as Asda in the United Kingdom, as the Seiyu Group in Japan, and as Best Price in India. It has wholly owned operations in Argentina, Chile, Brazil, and Canada.

Walmart is the world’s largest company by revenue – approximately US$486 billion according to Fortune Global 500 list in 2017 – as well as the largest private employer in the world with 2.3 million employees. It is a publicly traded family-owned business, as the company is controlled by the Walton family. Sam Walton’s heirs own over 50 percent of Walmart through their holding company, Walton Enterprises, and through their individual holdings. Walmart was the largest U.S. grocery retailer in 2016, and 62.3 percent of Walmart’s US$478.614 billion sales came from U.S. operations.

The company was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1972. By 1988, Walmart was the most profitable retailer in the U.S., and by October 1989, it had become the largest in terms of revenue. Originally geographically limited to the South and lower Midwest, by the early 1990s, the company had stores from coast to coast: Sam’s Club opened in New Jersey in November 1989 and the first California outlet opened in Lancaster in July 1990. A Walmart in York, Pennsylvania opened in October 1990: the first main store in the Northeast.

Walmart’s investments outside North America have seen mixed results: its operations in the United Kingdom, South America, and China are highly successful, whereas ventures in Germany and South Korea failed.

Shopping malls are emptying out

Shopping malls across the U.S. haven’t been this empty in six years, according to The Wall Street Journal, with the popularity of online shopping affecting brick-and-mortar stores throughout the country. The mall vacancy rate for the year’s second quarter is 8.6% (from 8.4% in Q1), “as more consumers shifted their shopping online,” per the Journal. Retailers such as Bon Ton, Sears, J.C. Penney and Toys “R” Us have all announced closures this year.

Online shopping
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Online shopping is a form of electronic commerce which allows consumers to directly buy goods or services from a seller over the Internet using a web browser. Consumers find a product of interest by visiting the website of the retailer directly or by searching among alternative vendors using a shopping search engine, which displays the same product’s availability and pricing at different e-retailers. As of 2016, customers can shop online using a range of different computers and devices, including desktop computers, laptops, tablet computers and smartphones.

An online shop evokes the physical analogy of buying products or services at a regular “bricks-and-mortar” retailer or shopping center; the process is called business-to-consumer (B2C) online shopping. When an online store is set up to enable businesses to buy from another businesses, the process is called business-to-business (B2B) online shopping. A typical online store enables the customer to browse the firm’s range of products and services, view photos or images of the products, along with information about the product specifications, features and prices.

Online stores typically enable shoppers to use “search” features to find specific models, brands or items. Online customers must have access to the Internet and a valid method of payment in order to complete a transaction, such as a credit card, an Interac-enabled debit card, or a service such as PayPal. For physical products (e.g., paperback books or clothes), the e-tailer ships the products to the customer; for digital products, such as digital audio files of songs or software, the e-tailer typically sends the file to the customer over the Internet. The largest of these online retailing corporations are Alibaba, Amazon.com, and eBay.