In modern years there has been an increasing interest in the mixture work and family, or more general, the integration of work and family life. One of the main reasons for this increasing interest is the increased contribution of women in professional employment, a development which has drastically altered traditional family structures and gender roles. Greater access to and involvement in education and enhanced career opportunities for women has led to a more diversified working population and the increase of the dual-worker family. The dual-careercouplesrefers to a specific kind of dual-worker family in which bothmembers follow a professional career and concurrently keep a family life together.
In dual-career relationships conventional family roles, specifying role behaviors, are challenged in a basic. In the conventional family representation, the male is regarded as the main ‘breadwinner’ and assures that the family has an adequate sum of financial earnings to live. His breadwinner function, limits his ability to connect in family responsibilities and therefore, the female manages the family, performs every family chores, and takes care of the kids. Regardless of strong historical value, the number of families that fit this conventional mould of the male as only breadwinner and female as the main housekeeper and care-giver is diminishing considerably. Factors for instance equal opportunity legislation, economic inevitability, expansion in white-collar employment and the impact of the female liberation/ the women’s movement have led to a raise in the number of nontraditional (i.e. dual-worker and dual-career) families. These factors, amongst others, have caused women to engage in employment in the marketplace and chase professional careers parallel to those pursued by their male counterparts. Dual-career couples are consequently expected to become a more common fact in the near future. Authors like Crompton (1999) pointed out that the question of work-life-balance was comparatively unproblematic until the closing decades of the twentieth century because of two frequently acknowledged assumptions: (a) the standard employee was full-time and almost always a man, and (b) women were assigned to voluntary labour of caring and family tasks. So, finding the right balance between work and family was relatively easy in this era, due to the domestication of women in addition to their exclusion from professional employment.
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The bigger contribution of women in the labour market since the beginning of the 21st century has considerably changed the demography of the work-force and reshaped conventional family associations, demonstrating a difference from traditional societal norms. So, women’s vigorous contribution in the labour market has placed stresses and tensions upon the conventional household and professional responsibilities. This dynamic interaction between work and family responsibilities complicates the attainment of a healthy work-life balance which may be vital for the efficient performance of the employee. Companies cannot and should not overlook the larger setting in which the work is performed. Families function as social systems, with an inter-relationship between work and non-work roles, so that tensions in one are inevitably transferred to the other. In addition to that, conflicts and tensions arising from multiple stress have a de motivating effect on employees, this raise the chances of absenteeism and signify a risk to the quality of organisations. Therefore, the innate difficulties of the dual-career life are likely to have significant direct consequences for dual-career employees employing organizations. The significance of proper employer responses to dual-career issues and dual-careers has develop into a central area of interest for human resource management.
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