Work-Life Balance – Implications for Working Women

10 Pages Posted: 6 Oct 2014 Last revised: 11 Oct 2014

See all articles by Shobha Sundaresan

Shobha Sundaresan

Maharani Lakshmi Ammanni College for Women

Date Written: October 4, 2014

Abstract

Work life balance is a term used to describe the balance between an individual’s personal life and professional life. A healthy work-life balance assumes great significance for working women particularly in the current context in which both, the family and the workplace have posed several challenges and problems for women. The dynamics of the work environment have exerted enormous pressure on working women as they need to cope with virtually two full time jobs – one at the office and the other at home. Review of literature related to the subject has revealed that working women experience greater difficulty than men in balancing work and family. It is also found that they experience conflict as there is job spill over into the home more frequently than home spill over into work. Besides to succeed in one environment, working women are often called upon to make sacrifices in another as each of the environments makes different demands on them and have distinct norms to adhere to. This study investigates the factors affecting work life balance among working women and the consequences of poor-work life balance. Data were obtained through a structured questionnaire administered to 125 randomly selected working women across organizations/institutions in Bangalore City. The response rate was about 93% and the obtained data were statistically analysed. Results indicate that a significant proportion of working women are experiencing difficulty in balancing work and family due to excessive work pressure, too little time for themselves and the need to fulfill others’ expectations of them. Majority of the working women experience job spill over into the home as they have to put in longer hours. Major consequences of poor work-life balance are high levels of stress and anxiety, disharmony at home, experiencing job burnout and inability to realize full potential. They feel irritable and resentful often due to their inability to balance work and family life. The findings have implications for working women and provide insights into finding solutions to maintain healthy work life balance. Two models of work life balance, viz. role-analysis model and three factor model have been developed to enable working women resolve the conflict caused due to poor work life balance. These models equip women with the mechanism to strike a fine balance and make them smarter, healthier and happier in every facet of their lives. Both the models assume greater significance for working women across the world as it helps them resolve the dilemmas of managing their multiple roles in the personal and professional lives.

Keywords: Job burnout; Role analysis; Working women; Work life balance; Work pressure

Suggested Citation

Sundaresan, Shobha, Work-Life Balance – Implications for Working Women (October 4, 2014). OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development, Vol. 7, No. 7, pp. 93-102, 2014, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2505439

Shobha Sundaresan (Contact Author)

Maharani Lakshmi Ammanni College for Women ( email )

Science PO, Malleshwaram
18th Cross
Bangalore, Karnataka 560 012
India

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