Integrating Work and Family

Challenges and Choices for a Changing World

by Saroj Parasuraman, Jeffrey H. Greenhaus, ed.


A far-reaching and insightful examination of work-family issues and concerns in today's society, with practical and stimulating discussions of the dilemmas and the choices available to manage them.

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May 1997


Pages 272
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Business/Human Resources
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Despite calls for a renewal of family values and the proliferation of corporate work-family programs, the goal of achieving a healthy balance between the demands of work and a satisfying family life remains elusive. Dr. Parasuraman, Dr. Greenhaus, and the contributors to this well-balanced and thoughtful volume examine this increasingly prevalent social dilemma from a stakeholder perspective. They see work-family tensions as a multifaceted social issue, and they examine the nature and consequences of these tensions from the viewpoints of individuals, employers, consultants, counseling professionals, and other service providers. Their inclusion of legal, cultural, international, and research perspectives and recognition of the unique concerns of vulnerable groups, such as nonexempt employees and ethnic minorities, add to the breadth of coverage. Academics in the social and behavioral sciences, executive decision-makers in government and business, human resource professionals, and employed men and women interested in achieving work-life balance will find this volume insightful, stimulating, and useful.

The editors have arranged their book into five parts and 21 chapters. Part I provides a broad overview of the environmental factors impacting work and family. It then identifies the critical issues and challenges facing individuals, families, and employees in managing the complex interdependencies between work and family roles. In Part II they provide a view of the issues from the vantage point of specific stakeholders. Part III concentrates on the role of culture in shaping ideology, policies, and practices concerning work and family and the relationships among them. Part IV examines the impact of career development programs on employees and their families. It also discusses the effectiveness of alternative career tracks, various usages of work-family benefits by women and men, and the roles employers and employees can play in legitimizing alternative career paths. Part V concludes the book by examining the cultural barriers to achieving more effective integration of work and family, and by analyzing the appropriate role of key stakeholders in addressing work-family problems.

Table of Contents

PrefaceTables and FiguresIssues and Challenges in Managing Work-Family LinkagesThe Changing World of Work and Family by Saroj Parasuraman and Jeffrey H. GreenhausA Panoramic View of Work-Family Concerns by Faith WohlLooking at Work-Family Issues Through Different LensesToward a Comprehensive Work/Life Strategy by Perry M. ChristensenThe Work-Family Issue from a Consultant's Perspective by Tyler PhillipsThe Role of a Juggler by Susan MillerManaging Work-Family Tensions: A Counseling Perspective by Marianne O'HareWork and Family: A Research Perspective by Marcia Brumit KropfServices and Work-and-Family Life by Barbara A. GutekLegal and Cultural Perspectives on Work-Family RelationshipsAn International Perspective on Work-Family Issues by Suzan LewisThe Work-Family Interface in India by Meera KomarrajuCultural Diversity in Organizations: Implications for Work-Family Initiatives by Donna KleinA Legal Perspective on Work-Family Issues by Eileen DrakeWork-Family Initiatives and Career Development: Problems and PromiseTelecommuting as a Response to Helping People Balance Work-Family by Francine Riley and Donna Weaver McCloskeyFamily, Sex, and Career Advancement by Jeanne M. BrettGaining Legitimacy for Flexible Arrangements and Career Paths: The Business Case for Public Accounting and Professional Service Firms by Monique Connor, Karen Hooks, and Terry McGuireThe Sex Difference in Employee Inclinations Regarding Work-Family Programs: Why Does It Exist, Should We Care, and What Should Be Done About It (If Anything)? by Gary N. PowellMoving Ahead: New Directions for the Work-Family AgendaVisioning the Future by Ellen C. Bankert and Sharon A. LobelMoving from Programs to Culture Change: The Next Stage for the Corporate Work-Family Agenda by Dana E. Friedman and Arlene A. JohnsonThe Impact of Corporate Culture on Work-Family Integration by Lotte BailynShared Responsibility for Managing Work and Family Relationships by Bradley K. GooginsThe Integration of Work and Family Life: Barriers and Solutions by Jeffrey H. Greenhaus and Saroj ParasuramanIndexAbout the Contributors



Work-family conflict has emerged as a prominent social issue because of its pervasiveness and complexity. Yet there has been little cultural appraisal of remedies to this conflict or what solutions do or do not work and why. The purpose of the present volume is to foster informed dialogue and debate among various constituencies that have an interest in solving the problems inherent in this conflict... The book's 21 chapters deal with managerial challenges; views from a variety of perspectives, including legal, cultural, and international dimensions; career development initiatives; and future directions.... [A]ll three of the target audiences (i.e., educators, counselors, and human resource professionals) should find the volume relevant. The book is well organized, contains introductory and summary chapters by the editors, and is well documented. Highly recommended for academic and professional business and social work collections.—Choice

Despite the proliferation of corporate work-family programs and calls for a renewal of family values, the goal of achieving a healthy balance between work and family remains elusive. The contributors to this balanced and thoughtful volume examine that social dilemma from a 'stakeholder perspective.' The authors see work-family tensions as a multifaceted social issue and examine the nature and consequences of these tensions from the viewpoint of individuals, employers, consultants, counseling professionals and other service providers. Legal, cultural, international and research perspectives are described, and the unique concerns of vulnerable groups, such as nonexempt employees and ethnic minorties, are recognized. Academics in the social sciences, executive decisionmakers in government and business, human resources professionals, and employed men and women interested in achieving work-life balance will find this insightful volume stimulating and useful.—BHR Magazine

A strength of the book is the inclusion of the perspectives of different players in the work-family arena, usually in the form of commentaries, rather than traditional research reports or literature reviews.—Journal of Marriage and the Family

...this book is a valuable interdisciplinary resource for work-family educators, researchers, advocates, and policy makers; the diversity of the chapters alone indicates the multifaceted nature of the work-family nexus.—Work and Occupations

This thoughtful compilation...could be of use to labor educators....It has a concluding chapter on the importance of collaborative relationships, and labor educators should find no problem identifying a role for unions when they discuss these issues with labor audiences and helping professionals. This volume's strength includes how it defines the issues and some of its proposed solutions; its clear statement on the deficiencies of most employer work-family programs: its review of the panorama of corporate, helping professional and academic researcher perspectives; and some of its contributors' visions of the future.—Labor Studies Journal

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