A Qualitative Research on the Work-Family-Life Balance Perception of Working Fathers

A Qualitative Research on the Work-Family-Life Balance Perception of Working Fathers

Selin Umutlu
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-9187-1.ch010
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Work-life and work-family-life balance can be expressed as the balance between the demands of an individual's work life and private life, and the demands of work life and family life. The issue of ensuring the harmony between work-family and work-life is taken into consideration by researchers, and studies on this subject are gaining momentum day by day. As in many countries around the world, family-friendly organization practices are taking place in Turkey to address this situation, and many social policies are implemented in order to harmonize the areas of work-life and work-family life. However, although studies on working women are included in detail, studies related with working fathers are very rare. In the study, the concepts of work-life balance and work-family-life balance will be discussed in detail. In addition, the fact of being a working father for working fathers who tend to establish work-family-life balance, and the thoughts of working fathers about whether they can establish a work-family-life balance will be discussed within the scope of the interviews.
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The Concept Of Work-Family Life Balance

The family is one of the cornerstones of society. As one of the indicators reflecting a unity and social life, the family is defined as an organization and the smallest social structure that forms according to certain rules in meeting and carrying out the material/spiritual needs of its members when it is considered as a social group, economically and socially in terms of the relations and interaction between its members (Günindi and Yaşa Giren, 2011: 351). Nuclear family consists of only mother, father and children while an extended family consists of a mother, father, wife, husband, sister, brother, son, daughter who are related by marriage or blood, by adoption, who live in the same house, who constantly communicate with each other, and who have income in common (Ağdemir, 1991). Based on the definitions of the family, it can be concluded that the family is the most important basic unit of the society and that it has always maintained its importance in all societies from past to present.

It is quite difficult to include conceptual recognition aimed at fully explaining the state of work-family balance or the balance of work and family life. Most of the authors have a mismatch of ideas about the issue of work-family balance, and whether it is possible to achieve harmony of work and family life. In the light of empirical studies, two conceptual definitions of work-family life balance can be given. The first and most widely accepted definition of work-family life balance is the absence of conflict or interference between work and family roles. Work-family life balance represents the extent to which participation in work or home is facilitated by experiences, skills and opportunities gained and developed at home or at work. Work-family life balance has a two-sided dimension as work facilitating family life and family facilitating working life. (Frone, 2003: 145).

Work-family life balance is a new and popular concept. However, the balance becomes ambiguous as many authors do not fully conceptualize the balance and interpret it in different ways (Greenhaus and Allen, 2011: 172).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Work-Family Boundary Theory: Separation of work, family and private living spaces.

Qualitative Research: It is defined as a research method consisting of conversations, opinions, impressions, and ideas.

Perception of Life Balance: Individuals' perceptions of work-family and private life balance.

Determinants of Work-Family-Life Balance: These are the factors that affect people's work-family and life balance.

Working Father: Individuals who acquire father identity in addition to employee identity while being employed in the labor market.

Work-Family-Life Balance: It is the individual's perception that the time and energy spent at work and the time and energy spent for her family are fair / balanced.

Work-Life Balance: It is the individual's balancing between work and non-work responsibilities, activities, and aspirations.

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