Five Questions with Jill Koziol

August 02, 2023
  • Private Banking
In Five Questions, we sit down with Jill Koziol, co-founder and CEO of Motherly, to discuss why she started the platform, the results of Motherly’s latest annual State of Motherhood survey, and where she sees the company and herself in the next five years.

1. Tell us about Motherly and your inspiration for creating the platform.

I co-founded Motherly eight years ago simply because it didn’t exist, and women were being significantly underserved by the parenting resources that were available to them. The idea was born from a call with my now co-founder, Liz Tenety, an award-winning journalist and editor. She called to discuss the seedling of an idea she had for a platform that would speak to today’s modern mothers.

We quickly decided to build a next-generation brand that would redefine motherhood for the modern woman that differentiated as woman-centered, expert-driven, and empowering.

I saw the white space immediately, recognizing that millennial women are so incredibly different from previous generations. For the first time, they are digital natives, more educated than men, and raising the most diverse generation in history. This makes today’s mother very multidimensional, and we created Motherly to empower her to thrive as a woman and a mother – because when mothers thrive, families and communities thrive.

2. How important were mentors to you as you created and grew Motherly?

I learn from, and lean on, so many amazing people in my network. In the early days, I was mentored by my father, a small business entrepreneur, and people I’d worked with previously who believed in my ability to lead. As Motherly has grown, I’ve been mentored by my investors, board, and advisors. I also count my co-founder, husband, friends, and executive team as critical to guiding me as I’ve grown the company. Teamwork truly does make the dream work.

On the personal family side, I believe it is critical to have other mothers in my life with children the same age, or a bit older, who can truly empathize with me along the journey as we navigate different milestones.

3. Motherly recently released the results of its annual State of Motherhood survey. Tell us about what’s on the minds of U.S. mothers in 2023.

Data from this year’s Motherly State of Motherhood report shows that household and family responsibilities are falling more on mothers now than they did during the height of the pandemic. Childcare remains a major source of struggle, one that often falls directly on moms. The rate of stay-at-home moms has nearly doubled to 25%, compared with 14% in 2022. This structural challenge that's really holding women back and mothers back in the workforce is affordable childcare.

According to our 2023 State of Motherhood Survey Report, we know that 18% of mothers in our sample changed jobs or left the workforce in the past year, and the top reasons cited were staying at home with children (28%) and lack of childcare (15%). In addition, 67% of moms were spending at least $1,000 a month on childcare.

4. What does the next five years look like for you and Motherly?

In the next five years, Motherly will be a generation-defining brand – we will be the leading destination guiding mothers along the journey of motherhood. You’ll see more tools, services, and products from us in the coming years as we double down on our audience and begin to grow with millennial parents as they navigate the teenage years and meet Gen Z as they become parents.

On my end, I’ll be here, serving Motherly and our audience, amplifying their voices as we increasingly advocate for the structural changes we need in our country to value caregiving and make motherhood sustainable for all.

5. What advice would you give to your younger self?

Be gentle with yourself. New parenthood is life- and identity-shifting. You won’t be the same person when you get to the other side, but that’s OK. Give yourself grace and time to navigate it, and you’ll find amazing superpowers that have the potential to supercharge your career.

Motherly’s 2023 State of Motherhood Survey Report

Every year, Motherly releases its State of Motherhood survey, the largest statistically significant survey of U.S. mothers. The annual report gives a voice to today’s mothers and equips them and their supporters with insights to advocate for change.

Key highlights from this year’s study include:

  • The Great Resignation continues for mothers: 25% of moms said they were stay-at-home parents, vs. 15% in 2022.
  • Self-care looks different as moms prioritize sleep: 51% of moms had not gone out with friends or their partner without their children in the past month, and 49% reported being burned out by motherhood.       
  • Household and family responsibilities fall more on mothers now than during the height of the pandemic: 58% of moms said they were primarily responsible for the duties of running a household and caring for children, up 2% over 2022.
  • Mental health is mom’s biggest worry: Nearly half (46%) of mothers reported seeking therapy.    
  • Moms are preparing for a recession: 80% of mothers were worried about a recession, and 71% reported cutting back spending this year.

Access the full report here.

The Great Resignation continues for mothers.

The rate of SAHMs (stay at home moms) has nearly doubled at 25%, compared to 15% in 2022. 52% of working moms say the cost of childcare has made them consider leaving the workforce.

8 in 10 mothers worry about a recession and are making preemptive cuts.
80% reported they are concerned about a possible recession and 71% are planning to cut back spending.

Jill Koziol was featured in the summer edition of our next gen newsletter, The Fresh Take. Subscribe to The Fresh Take here.

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