Conversations about menopause are emerging in a critical space: the workplace. Menopause may be a time of great transition (the last one, at that), but for many women, it can also be a time of liberation.
Before, during, and after menopause, women thrive as entrepreneurs and experienced mentors. Today we’re shining a spotlight on the changing narratives around menopause at work and celebrating the entrepreneurs and advocates paving the way for women in menopause.
Celebrating the rise in supportive menopause solutions at work
Women transition through distinct phases throughout their lives, from puberty to pregnancy and motherhood (for some), culminating in menopause. Menopause impacts over one million women each year in the U.S., including many irreplaceable employees and future business owners.
However, according to a survey by Mira, a fellow women’s health organization, many women don’t feel comfortable discussing their symptoms in the workplace. Up to 42% of survey respondents reported taking one or more days off due to menopause symptoms.
Normalizing menopause and providing all employees with educational materials about this transition is essential to a business’s success. That’s why, in October 2022, EmblemHealth partnered with Elektra Health to “smash the menopause taboo.” Elektra now provides Embelm’s menopausal employees with personal health coaching, a supportive community, and other vital menopause-related education resources. Emblem’s incredible partnership tells us that not only are menopause-supportive services at work possible, but with the help of apps like Elektra’s, they’re easy to implement.
Changing the narrative about menopausal women in the workplace
Women contribute decades of critical experience and creativity and are mentors to younger employees. Most women also enter menopause between 45 and 55, which often correlates to significant career advancements and leadership opportunities.
In 2018, the business journal out of Wharton business school highlighted the economic importance and immense opportunity of retaining “older women in the workforce.” Essential to their solution? Healthcare services and flexible work environments.
Forbes reported on similar research and found “entrepreneurs in their 50s and over are twice as likely to be successful as those in their 20s.” Middle-aged women also control much of the world’s purchasing power. Together, menopausal women create a dynamic, entrepreneurial force key to boosting a business’s—and country’s—growth.
To further change the narrative about menopause at work, employers need to support women throughout their entire transition in and out of menopause. It’s imperative women in menopause can continue to contribute their invaluable knowledge.
Who are the entrepreneurs paving the way for women in menopause?
At the helm of menopause awareness campaigns and solutions for menopause are often women undergoing menopause themselves. Women who know first-hand what it means to combat menopause symptoms and balance full work schedules.
Gerie DiPiano, CEO of FemmePharma Consumer Healthcare, employed her depth of pharmaceutical industry experience to create high-quality products that help women find relief from menopause symptoms. She has a passion for developing new, effective treatments for women and continues to be a powerful voice for women’s health.
Julie Gordon White, CEO and Founder of Bossa Bars, formed her company after searching for answers about what to expect during menopause and, along the way, “stumbled upon a new business.” Empowerment and community are central tenets to her mission, that women, with the proper support and resources, can start loving their menopause journey.
Rochelle Weitzner, CEO and Founder of Pause Well-Aging, formulated a line of skincare products for middle-aged and older women. To Rochelle, they’re not simply products. She aims to start changing the narrative we’ve been told about aging. Her website states, “beauty doesn’t peak at any point in a woman’s life—it just keeps evolving.”
Kamili Wilson, founder and CEO of Menopause Made Modern by Claret Circle, entered menopause at age 43. What ensued were frequent Google searches and many questions about her symptoms. Today, Claret Circle offers women expert resources to learn about menopause symptoms and treatment options, culturally-inclusive stories, and connections to helpful products and services (like Elektra Health’s).
d’Alene Fallon, a Certified Holistic Nutritionist, advocates for women’s thriving through middle age and menopause. She owns Vital Femme, a high-quality supplement company, and focuses on helping women in menopause find natural symptom relief. Her journey through menopause fuels her passion for helping other women find relief during menopause.
Other up-and-coming organizations helping to revolutionize the treatment of menopause (many with menopausal or postmenopausal women leading the way) include Peppy Health, an app that connects menopausal women to live health experts, and Thermaband, which helps cool or heat your body according to your symptoms.
Even celebrities are becoming more outspoken about menopause, including Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, Cheryl Hines, and Beverly Jonson.
It’s time we start recognizing and celebrating more of these women leading by example. Their innovations and expertise are allowing more women to thrive during menopause. And equipped with the right support, women in menopause can usher in new, liberating chapters in their lives and pursue dreams of becoming entrepreneurs, business owners, and leaders.
We’ve had the privilege of speaking with many of these entrepreneurs who are paving the way for improved menopause management and education. You can listen to their conversations on the Love Mia Vita podcast.
No matter where you are in your menopause journey, you deserve to have knowledgeable, intimate healthcare partners to help you feel your best. Explore our other articles, podcast episodes with women’s health experts, and products to ease your transition into menopause.