Entrepreneurs’ tactics for segmentation and integration of work, family, social life and private life.

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Publication Conference other
Title Entrepreneurs’ tactics for segmentation and integration of work, family, social life and private life.
Author Languilaire, Jean-Charles Emile ; Caulier-Gustavsson, Carole
Research Centre Centre for Work Life and Evaluation Studies (CTA)
Date 2015
English abstract
The relations between work and personal life have long been on the public, business, and research agenda (see Hall & Richter, 1988; Kossek, et al., 2005). Such relations have been conceptualised in different ways going from “work-family relations (see Friedman & Greenhaus, 2000) to “work/non-work relations” (Languilaire, 2009) passing by “work-personal life relations”. In this paper, we refer to “work/non-work relations” where non-work is defined as there major life domains namely: the family, the social and the private (Languilaire, 2009). The accumulation of knowledge in the work/non-work relation is not to be undermined so that the work-life field has reached considerable development in understanding work/non-work challenges. Additionally, research on work/non-work relations points out that developing work/non-work strategies is essential to individual’s well-being (see Frone, Yardley, & Markel, 1997; Geurts & Demerouti, 2003; Poelmans, O'Driscoll, & Beham, 2005). As matter of fact, Kossek et al. (2005, p. 351) in the context of work and family relation, touched upon in 2005 upon what could be seen as individual strategies indicating that ”everyone has a preferred, even if implicit, approach for meshing work and family roles that reflects his or her values and the realities of his or her lives for organising and separating role demands and expectations in the realms of home and work”. (Kossek, et al., 2005, p. 351). Based on social cognitive theory and especially on Zerubavel's social mindscapes (see Zerubavel, 1991; Zerubavel, 1997), Nippert-Eng (1996) popularised in 1996 two major strategies to combine life domains, namely integration and segmentation. One the one hand, people wishing segmentation define strict lines because they do not accept a mixture betwen their life domains and want to avoid such mixtrure. On the other hand, people wishing integration define no lines and do not distinguish any life domains. Whereas several pieces of research have measured the degree of integration and segmentation (see Bulger, et al., 2007), what is actually done by individuals while segmenting and integrating is under-researched. Additionally, whereas most research focus on ”employees”, less empirical research is based in ”self-employed/entrepreneurs”. This research focuses on these two research gaps. To address these gaps, this research has its origins in the boundary perspective that “address the construction of work-family boundaries as a complex interplay between employees' strategies and preferences, the social contexts in which they are embedded, and both the idiosyncratic and cultural meanings attached to work and family” (Desrochers & Sargent, 2003, p. 5). Within the boundary perspective, individuals develop diverse types of boundaries enabling them to organise their life domains (work, family, social and private) so that they can enact their strategies for integration or segmentation. Several boundary types have been discussed in research among those the spatial, temporal and psychological boundaries (see Clark, 2000; Ahrenten, 1990). In an in-depth narrative analysis of individual’s work/non-work experiences, Languilaire (2009) indicates that seven boundaries are developped and managed by individuals. Each boundary is concerned with one specific aspect of one’s life namely: time, space, behaviours, people, thoughts, emotions and psychosomatic elements such as stress or energy. For each type of boundaries, individuals develop tactics enabling them as a whole to reach their ”wished” strategy towards segmention or integration. In line with Kossek, Noe, and DeMarr (1999) work/non-work tactics can be understood as the visible and practical activities enabling an individual to concretely place and transcend (i.e. cross) boundaries or, in turn, to render boundaries more or less permeable and/or flexible. For example, an integrator may develop tactics to segment time. One of theses tactics could be “by pre-deciding of time slots in his/her agenda” so that he/she ”reserves time” for each domain with no possible overlap. Based on empirical data, Languilaire (2009) develop an extensive (not exhaustive) list of tactics used by employed middle-managers. This list will be the base for the analysis of this research. Based on Languilaire (2009), this research deductively describes which tactics entrepreneurs/self-employed people are using to manage the relations between their life domains in a satisfying way, i.e. in line with their strategy. This research is based on qualitative interviews of entrepreneurs/self-employed and qualitative analysis in a form of content analysis. At this date (submission date) data is being processed.
Conference
WORK 2015 : New Meanings of Work (19-21 August 2015 : Turku, Finland)
ISBN 978-951-29-5895-5
Language eng (iso)
Subject work/non-work management
work/non-work tactics
entrepreneurs
self-employed
integration-segmentation
Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::HUMANITIES and RELIGION
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/22296 Permalink to this page
Link http://www.utu.fi/en/units/tcls/sites/work2015/Pag... (external link to related web page)
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