Of course you’re happy when one of your most capable employees tells you she or he is having a baby. And of course you want that person to feel comfortable and secure taking all the leave the company offers. But there’s no denying that you’ll also likely grit your teeth a little when you imagine having that pivotal person out of the office.
Once you recover your equanimity and start making plans, keep in mind that 6 weeks, 12 weeks, 16 weeks, 26 weeks, or even a year without someone who makes important contributions to your team’s work is a lot better than having that person quit, and significant paid parental leave offerings make valuable employees more loyal and engaged when they come back. In the meantime, you have an opportunity to let other team members spread their wings.