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Work and Family - Allies or Enemies?: What Happens When Business Professionals Confront Life Choices Hardcover – January 15, 2000
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"A reasoned and brave book that looks squarely at the tensions between family and work, gives us the facts, and suggests new ways to be good at both. Its creative research and reasoned recommendations should make our choices much easier."--Roger Brown<br/><br/>"A comprehensive and seminal contribution to the research on work and family life. By providing a conceptual framework, it makes sense of the lives of business school graduates-revealing how their personal resources and choices as well as the resources provided by their families and workplaces affect their personal and family success. More importantly, it reads like a research adventure story, exploring the questions that are hotly debated today, such as whether and-under what circumstances-women experience a career jeopardy. Additionally, it breaks new ground by including children as the unseen stakeholders of their parents' work. --Ellen Galinsky, President, Families and Work Institute, Author,Ask the Children: What America's Children Really Think About Working Parents<br/><br/>"By providing us with fresh data on alumni of two top business schools, Work and Family-Allies or Enemies? makes a significant contribution not only to the work-life field, but also to employers trying to reach their own balance between the needs of their people and the exigencies of business today."--Phillip A. Laskaway, Ernst and Young<br/><br/>"Stewart Friedman and Jeff Greenhaus have produced a work that sets a new standard for research on work-family balance.... This work is required reading for CEOs and managers who must win the war for talent if their firms are to survive in the 21st century.... This book should have a permanent place in the curriculum of graduate and professional programs that train MBAs and other future leaders.... It is a tour de force that will define the discourse on this topic for decades to come."--David A. Thomas, Professor, Harvard Business School and author of Breaking Through: The Making of Minority Executives in Corporate America<br/><br/>"This pair of B-school professors interviewed 861 businesspeople to discover how work and family relate. They conclude that work and family life often are, but need not be in conflict and explore six major themes that can help readers achieve a balance between the two. Nearly a third of the book is dedicated to two appendices covering the details of the study itself and tables and notes on the research." --Business Reader Review
About the Author
Stewart D. Friedman is Practice Professor of Management at The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where he directs the Wharton Work/Life Integration Project. He is currently on leave, serving as director of the Leadership Development Center, Ford Motor Company. He has advised Vice President Al Gore on work and family issues, and his research has been profiled in The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and other business media. Working Mother magazine recently recognized him as one of 25 "friends of the family"--men who have made it easier for working parents to raise and nurture children.
Jeffrey H. Greenhaus is Professor of Management and William A. Mackie Professor of Commerce and Engineering at Drexel University. Author or co-author of three books, his research on work-family relationships, career management, and diversity has appeared in various journals including the Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Vocational Behavior, and the Journal of Applied Psychology.
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Based upon a pioneering study of 800 business professionals, Work and Family offers startling insights and lessons into how men and women, along with their employers, are dealing with the challenges of integrating parental and professional responsibilities. The book is formed around six key themes: 1) We can have (much of) it all, but it's especially difficult for working mothers; 2) Work and family can be allies; 3) Time is not the major problem; 4) Authority on the job is essential for work-family integration; 5) Women may be better adapted for jobs of the future; and 6) Kids are the unseen stakeholders at work. Friedman and Greenhaus weave these themes through the book in ways that puncture myths (keeping private and professional lives separate) and illuminate new understandings (acceptance of employers to new work processes to complement work-family integration).
The authors offer three principles for integrating work and life. One, clarify what's important. Parents need to be clear with one another as well as with their employers about what they want to achieve in their lives. Two, recognize and support the whole person. Private and professional lives overlap; it is important that individuals integrate the best parts of themselves into all parts of their lives. Three, continually experiment with how goals are achieved. Blending work and family is an ongoing learning process that needs continuous evaluation to meet changing needs.
Work and Family is as much for parents as it is for employers. The war for talent is continuous and escalating. As authors Friedman and Greenhaus demonstrate in their research, those employers who strive to meet employees' needs for an integrated work and life will be rewarded with more loyal and dedicated employees who are happier and more productive. They end up creating a win/win situation for employees as well as their shareholders.
Work and Family is an important work deserving of inclusion in the lexicon of literature concerned with our changing workplace. Parents will find prescriptions for finding answers in their day to day work and life choices. Employers will find lessons that they can apply to their work environment. And researchers will find a fundamental study upon which to carve new understandings of work and life in our culture.