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This CEO mama is working to create incredible job opportunities for new moms

Whether on maternity leave, looking to dip your toes in a project, or ready to dive into a new career move STAT.

This CEO mama is working to create incredible job opportunities for new moms

Motherly @ Work features the stories and insights of modern women growing their careers—and their families.



Allison Robinson is one of those mamas.

She’s a new mother, who while on maternity leave used her time to do her part to redefine the workforce for mothers. Founder + CEO of The Mom Project—a digital talent community which connects educated women with highly successful companies for top notch employment opportunities.

The Mom Project offers accomplished women (who also happen to be mothers) three different options—project-based work, a ‘Maternityship’, and permanent staffing.

Their revolutionary Maternityship program helps companies staff any gaps they experience due to parental leaves, and also helps mothers ease back into the workforce.

Allison and her team are committed to providing incredible work opportunities for women throughout their motherhood journey—whether they’re on maternity leave, looking to dip their toes in a project, or ready to dive into a new career move STAT.

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We caught up with Allison to find out her secrets to a happy family and the motivation to speak up for millions of women on a daily basis.

Your business is brilliant. Why did you want to create The Mom Project?

Allison Robinson: We lose too many talented women in the workforce because they can’t find the right balance between their career goals and desire to build a family. I started The Mom Project to provide mothers with an alternative career path that allows them to meaningfully engage in the workforce on their own terms and be supported by a community of like-minded women.

What was the need in the market?

Allison Robinson: Acquiring and retaining top talent is critical to the success of any organization and we’re giving companies access to a large pool of highly educated, professionally accomplished women that has been largely inaccessible.

What is a Maternityship, and how does it work for mothers and businesses?

Allison Robinson: The Mom Project’s Maternityship program provides companies with coverage through gaps in staffing created by parental leaves of absence while also providing mothers a bridge back into the workforce. For instance, if a company has someone going out on maternity leave for three months, we will send in one of our professionals who has similar experience to cover for that gap.

Does The Mom Project offer projects all over the U.S.?

Allison Robinson: Yes it does! We have new companies signing up daily all over the country!

Why is it important for you to work toward ensuring mothers have work opportunities?

Allison Robinson: It’s critically important mothers have access to rewarding work opportunities.

I believe if we can structure work so that mothers can achieve both their career and family goals, we can help close the gender pay gap, increase the number of women in leadership roles and significantly stimulate our national economy.

What are your big hopes and dreams for The Mom Project?

Allison Robinson: I look forward to The Mom Project becoming the leading destination where world-class companies access highly educated and skilled female talent.

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What inspires you to do this work?

Allison Robinson: I feel most inspired when I speak to moms across the country that we have helped place into great opportunities. Everyone has a unique story and I find the personal narratives of the women on our platform to be incredibly moving and motivating.

Tell us about your career to this point—how did you get here?

Allison Robinson: I’ve spent the last eight years with Procter and Gamble. I was able to get a lot of great experience working with some of the largest retailers across the country and learning what makes consumers tick—specifically millennial moms during my time on the Pampers brand.

What are your secrets for integrating work and family?

Allison Robinson: I think the line between one’s personal and professional life is becoming increasingly blurred. Personally, one thing I am working on is to avoid the urge to check emails on my phone when I’m spending time with my family.

You’re a busy woman—how do you recharge?

Allison Robinson: Spending time with my family is my favorite way to unwind. I also really enjoy traveling, cooking, drinking wine and reading nonfiction (including my Twitter and Facebook newsfeed!)

Do you have a mentor or someone you look up to that’s helped to shape you as a woman and a mother? Tell us how they inspire you.

Allison Robinson: I’m blessed to have many inspiring role models in my life that have helped shape me as a mother, wife and entrepreneur. My sister Holly is about to have her seventh child and she manages to do it all with poise and grace and she is such a wonderful role model to me… and I often try to channel her patience!

Tell us about your son. How has he transformed your career?

Allison Robinson: I had my first child last year and he has absolutely transformed my life outlook. I think from a career standpoint he has given me a more balanced perspective to the way I approach work and the meaning of success.

What gets you out of bed in the morning and keeps you inspired and excited about life?

Allison Robinson: First, a piping hot cup of coffee! On a more serious note, I’m motivated when I wake up to see my beautiful son and to make the most out of this opportunity to help other mothers find meaningful work.

Tell us about a typical day in your life.


At 6: 30 am. . . hit snooze until my son wakes up at 7:15 am

At 7:45 am. . .drink coffee and enjoy the morning with my son and husband before the workday starts

At 9:00 am. . . meet with my team to discuss the newest project opportunities

11:00 am…provide my CTO recommendations on how to enhance our site based on the excellent feedback from our highly engaged users

At 1:00 pm. . . check my news feed to see what’s trending in workplace topics and share relevant stories and articles with the members in our network

At 3:00 pm. . . present a new parental leave program recommendation to one of our partner companies for their organization that will help them to better retain their female talent

At 5:00 pm. . . dinner with my family, if we’re not cooking it’s usually takeout sushi

At 9:00 pm. . . respond to emails and catch up on Shark Tank or Top Chef


What’s one thing you do every day (or try to do every day!) to ensure that your work and home lives run more smoothly?

Allison Robinson: A well-synced family google calendar!

We’d love to hear—what would you tell other mamas who have a great idea and want to start their own business?

Allison Robinson: I would highly recommend reading the book “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries. It does a terrific job walking you through how to test the market viability of your idea before investing a lot of time, money or resources.

Also, I’d suggest finding mentors and advisors that push you and can make up for your areas of weakness.

What do you hope your children learn from your career?

Allison Robinson: That there’s no one path to success and if you find work that has meaning, you’ll figure out how to make a living from it.

What’s in your purse?

Allison Robinson: My iPhone, passport, chapstick, a notepad and pen, bronzer, and Pampers wipes.

What does ‘Motherly’ mean to you?

Allison Robinson: Motherly means a modern mother who isn’t afraid to rewrite the rules.

Spot on.?

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I felt lost as a new mother, but babywearing helped me find myself again

I wish someone had told me before how special wearing your baby can be, even when you have no idea how to do it.

My first baby and I were alone in our Brooklyn apartment during a particularly cold spring with yet another day of no plans. My husband was back at work after a mere three weeks of parental leave (what a joke!) and all my friends were busy with their childless lives—which kept them too busy to stop by or check in (making me, at times, feel jealous).

It was another day in which I would wait for baby to fall asleep for nap number one so I could shower and get ready to attempt to get out of the house together to do something, anything really, so I wouldn't feel the walls of the apartment close in on me by the time the second nap rolled around. I would pack all the diapers and toys and pacifiers and pump and bottles into a ginormous stroller that was already too heavy to push without a baby in it .

Then I would spend so much time figuring out where we could go with said stroller, because I wanted to avoid places with steps or narrow doors (I couldn't lift the stroller by myself and I was too embarrassed to ask strangers for help—also hi, New Yorkers, please help new moms when you see them huffing and puffing up the subway stairs, okay?). Then I would obsess about the weather, was it too cold to bring the baby out? And by the time I thought I had our adventure planned, the baby would wake up, I would still be in my PJs and it was time to pump yet again.

Slowly, but surely, and mostly thanks to sleep deprivation and isolation, I began to detest this whole new mom life. I've always been a social butterfly. I moved to New York because I craved that non-stop energy the city has and in the years before having my baby I amassed new friends I made through my daily adventures. I would never stop. I would walk everywhere just to take in the scenery and was always on the move.

Now I had this ball and chain attached to me, I thought, that didn't even allow me to make it out of the door to walk the dog. This sucks, I would think regularly, followed by maybe I'm not meant to be a mom after all.


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Time-saving formula tips our editors swear by

Less time making bottles, more time snuggling.

As a new parent, it can feel like feeding your baby is a full-time job—with a very demanding nightshift. Add in the additional steps it takes to prepare a bottle of formula and, well… we don't blame you if you're eager to save some time when you can. After all, that means more time for snuggling your baby or practicing your own well-deserved self-care.

Here's the upside: Many, many formula-feeding mamas before you have experienced the same thing, and they've developed some excellent tricks that can help you mix up a bottle in record time. Here are the best time-saving formula tips from editors here at Motherly.

1. Use room temperature water

The top suggestion that came up time and time again was to introduce bottles with room temperature water from the beginning. That way, you can make a bottle whenever you need it without worrying about warming up water—which is a total lifesaver when you have to make a bottle on the go or in the middle of the night.

2. Buy online to save shopping time

You'll need a lot of formula throughout the first year and beyond—so finding a brand like Comforts, which offers high-quality infant formula at lower prices, will help you save a substantial amount of money. Not to mention, you can order online or find the formula on shelves during your standard shopping trip—and that'll save you so much time and effort as well.

3. Pre-measure nighttime bottles

The middle of the night is the last time you'll want to spend precious minutes mixing up a bottle. Instead, our editors suggest measuring out the correct amount of powder formula into a bottle and putting the necessary portion of water on your bedside table. That way, all you have to do is roll over and combine the water and formula in the bottle before feeding your baby. Sounds so much better than hiking all the way to the kitchen and back at 3 am, right?

4. Divide serving sizes for outings

Before leaving the house with your baby, divvy up any portions of formula and water that you may need during your outing. Then, when your baby is hungry, just combine the pre-measured water and powder serving in the bottle. Our editors confirm this is much easier than trying to portion out the right amount of water or formula while riding in the car.

5. Memorize the mental math

Soon enough, you'll be able to prepare a bottle in your sleep. But, especially in the beginning or when increasing your baby's serving, the mental math can take a bit of time. If #mombrain makes it tough to commit the measurements to memory, write up a cheat sheet for yourself or anyone else who will prepare your baby's bottle.

6. Warm up chilled formula with water

If you're the savvy kind of mom who prepares and refrigerates bottles for the day in advance, you'll probably want to bring it up to room temperature before serving. Rather than purchase a bottle warmer, our editors say the old-fashioned method works incredibly well: Just plunge the sealed bottle in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes and—voila!—it's ready to serve.



Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on Comfortsforbaby.com to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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Errands and showers are not self-care for moms

Thinking they are is what's burning moms out.

A friend and I bump into each other at Target nearly every time we go. We don't pre-plan this; we must just be on the same paper towel use cycle or something. Really, I think there was a stretch where I saw her at Target five times in a row.

We've turned it into a bit of a running joke. "Yeah," I say sarcastically, "We needed paper towels so you know, I had to come to Target… for two hours of alone time."

She'll laugh and reply, "Oh yes, we were out of… um… paper clips. So here I am, shopping without the kids. Heaven!"

Now don't get me wrong. I adore my trips to Target (and based on the fullness of my cart when I leave, I am pretty sure Target adores my trips there, too).

But my little running joke with my friend is actually a big problem. Because why is the absence of paper towels the thing that prompts me to get a break? And why on earth is buying paper towels considered a break for moms?

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