Case | HBS Case Collection | May 2003 (Revised March 2006)

Carol Fishman Cohen: Professional Career Reentry (A)

by Myra M. Hart, Robin J. Ely and Susan Wojewoda


Explores the career challenges facing highly successful women who leave the full-time workforce for several years to manage family commitments. Carol Cohen is a 1985 Harvard MBA who has professional line experience in a manufacturing environment, followed by a successful transition into investment banking. Details Cohen's decision to return to a professional career after almost 11 years out of the full-time workforce. Describes her decision-making process, including discussions with her husband about shared parenting responsibilities, and provides details of her professional networking, resume development, and interview preparation. Concludes with a job offer to Cohen from Sankaty Advisors, a Bain Capital Partners company. Discussion centers on the decision to return to work, the strategic plan and specific steps, and concludes with questions about setting expectations--both at home and at work--and negotiating terms.

Keywords: Work-Life Balance; Family and Family Relationships;


Hart, Myra M., Robin J. Ely, and Susan Wojewoda. "Carol Fishman Cohen: Professional Career Reentry (A)." Harvard Business School Case 803-185, May 2003. (Revised March 2006.)