Parental policy | Spotify's UK director leads by example, taking 6 months paternity leave

Spotify's UK director leads by example, taking 6 months paternity leave

Spotify’s UK Managing Director takes six months of paternity leave, highlighting the streaming platform’s liberal parental leave policy, allowing employees up to six months of paid leave when they have a child.

In an interview with Fortune, Even Connaughton, the boss of the music streaming giant’s British arc reflected on his time as a new parent.

“That was harder than being a managing director, without a doubt,” he told Fortune.

“It’s long hours, you don't get much feedback, and any feedback you do get is kind of shouted or cried out.”

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Spotify’s parental leave policy allows employees who are new parents to take six months of paid leave when they have a child – the policy applying to both new mothers and fathers.

Connaughton has been Spotify’s UK director since 2018. The recent father explained the importance of having time off work after becoming a new parent, both for employees to bond with their newborn and for the own wellbeing of the worker.

He continued: “I think back to those first weeks together as a new family. It's beautiful, but it's so relentless. And I couldn't imagine having to make decisions at work in that period. When you're hallucinating, have no sleep, I don't think you should be at work.”

Inclusive parental leave

Connaughton taking his paid parental leave, despite being a company executive, has the positive effect of leading by example, setting a positive precedent for fellow employees.

“I think a welcome side effect of me taking my parental leave entitlement has been that others in the business hopefully feel more comfortable doing so,” he said in the interview.

Spotify’s progressive policy has a myriad of positive effects, increasing employee wellbeing and alleviating inequality.

In the UK, if you are employed and pregnant, you are entitled to a year of maternity leave. In contrast, paternity leave is typically a significant amount shorter, and usually covers one to two weeks off work.

This discrepancy in parental leave has historically widened workplace inequality between men and women, particularly in terms of career progression and pay.

Spotify’s policy, which allows a lengthy paternity leave, acts as an example of an inclusive policy with the employee at the centre of it, and with gender inequalities at the centre of it.



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