Previously published as: Equal Opportunities International
Online from: 2010
Subject Area: Human Resource Management
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|Title:||Female part-time managers: Work-life balance, aspirations and career mobility|
|Author(s):||Jennifer Tomlinson, (Leeds University Business School, Leeds, UK), Susan Durbin, (Business School, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK)|
|Citation:||Jennifer Tomlinson, Susan Durbin, (2010) "Female part-time managers: Work-life balance, aspirations and career mobility", Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, Vol. 29 Iss: 3, pp.255 - 270|
|Keywords:||Careers, Gender, Managers, Part time workers, United Kingdom, Women|
|Article type:||Research paper|
|DOI:||10.1108/02610151011028859 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore the employment trajectories, aspirations, work-life balance and career mobility of women working as part-time managers.
Design/methodology/approach – In-depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted with 16 female part-time managers and four of their line managers in public and private-sector organizations. Interviews explored women's career trajectories before and after the transition to part-time work and focused on career mobility, aspirations and work-life balance.
Findings – The part-time managers in this sample held varied careers while working full-time but careers stalled once a transition to part-time work was made. The majority were career focused, worked intensively and felt frustrated with their lack of mobility and career progression while working part-time. The majority worked in excess of their contracted hours and did not experience an appropriate reallocation of work when they reduced hours.
Practical implications – This paper is of value to both researchers and policy makers. Policy implications point to the limitations of the current UK legislation on the right to request flexible working. The paper states that further research would be beneficial on the ways in which managers employed on part-time and other flexible contracts, operate successfully in organizations, with the aim of championing alternative working patterns and breaking down traditional long hours cultures which act as a barrier to women and part-time workers.
Originality/value – This paper explores the employment profiles and experiences of a little studied and rare group of female workers.
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