Joan BladesWHO SHE IS: Joan Blades, co-founder of, and and Great Work Cultures Initative


SUCCESS STORY: Co-founding three extraordinary grassroots websites

WORK SCHEDULE: Very flexible

KIDS: (2) ages 17 and 24

SANITY VICE: Chocolate

RECENT SMART READ: Anatomy of an Epidemic

BEST TIME-MANAGEMENT TIP: If you are primarily listening in on a conference call, enjoy working in the garden at the same time.

GO-TO TECH: UpWorthy


Five questions for Joan:

1. You’re a founder of and Tell us about your new initiative, Great Work Cultures.

The Great Work Cultures initiative is focused on creating a new norm of Respectful and Empowered work cultures. We all know about wonderful work cultures, yet great work environments tend to be the exception, not the rule. Working together, we are collaborating to create a new norm of workplace cultures that optimize worker effectiveness and human happiness.

Screen shot 2014-09-30 at 7.59.59 AM2. MoveOn and MomsRising are know as successful grassroots movements. Is change in workplace culture a grassroots movement?

Great Work Culture’s change efforts invite everyone – grassroots activists, leaders, academics and more. What about corporate responsibility in this effort? I can’t imagine a responsible corporation that would not aspire to a culture of respect.

3. What are you finding is the biggest roadblock to change within companies?

Trust. Typically change doesn’t happen unless there is a crisis or other strong motivation.

4. How can moms who are frustrated in their current roles make a difference where they work when it comes to improving culture?

We are working to provide tools and support for moms and others who want to make a difference where they work. Sometimes that may be having a great fact sheet or short video. Sometimes that may be connecting with someone who has succeeded in improving their work culture.

5. What is the media missing about working moms, in your opinion?

Most people don’t realize that the reason data shows women only make 77 cents to an equally qualified man’s dollar is the profound bias against mothers in hiring, wages and advancement. A mom makes 73 cents to an equally qualified man’s dollar and a single mom is apt to make only 60 cents. No wonder there are so many women and children living in poverty!

Follow Joan: @JoanBlades