Agree - this was quite an insightful article. I've always believed that it should work in reverse - that you should set the objective and then leave it up to individuals to work out how to get there, which is what the article says except for specifying that their roles need to be clear. I believed that if roles were less clearly defined then it gave people scope to expand their remit, however I can see why this can cause confusion.
I think it's a fabulous idea- especially in the US where maternity leave is paltry at best, and childcare costs are astronomical (in consideration of the lack of subsidies). Many working mothers (and I'm sure some fathers) have an emotionally difficult time leaving their children and as a result, stress increases. As stress increases, performance decreases. In my opinion, ny accomodations that a company can make to allow parents to spend more time with their children will only produce better long-term results (i.e. happy staff = longer term employment/loyalty = more output).