Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Business Couples: Relationships Between Bidirectional Work-Family Conflict and Successful Families and Businesses
by White, Helen L., Ph.D., Northcentral University, 2013, 176; 3574019
Abstract (Summary)

Work-family conflict, a prominent topic in business research, seems to increase the number of small business closures each year. The interdependency of couples in business together contributed to that conflict and affected each spouse's success perceptions of both families and businesses. Other researchers have explored multiple aspects of work-family conflict experienced by business couples at the individual level. Studies performed at the couple level, especially of the effects one spouse had upon the other, were not found. The problem was that such research was needed to provide a more holistic understanding of the phenomenon of how owners perceive work-family conflict, family success, and business success. This quantitative study provides an initial exploration of how one spouse's work-family conflict affects the other spouse's perception of family and business success. The Foundation for Free Enterprise Education headquartered in Erie, Pennsylvania, recruited 22 dyads to participate. These were couples living and working together, in addition at least one spouse was an owner where the couple worked. The focus was on effect size, attributable to the small sample size. Key findings for the husbands were the perception of combined family and business success returned a k parameter of 0.96, and the perception of family success returned a k parameter of 0.94. Both indicated a couple-orientation inasmuch as wives' conflict had equal negative effects on husbands' perceptions of success as did husbands' own conflict. Key findings for the wives' perception of combined family and business success returned a k parameter of -2.91, and perception of business success returned a k parameter of - 1.75. Both suggested a possible contrast pattern inasmuch as husbands' conflict had larger negative effects on the wives' perception of success than did wives' own conflict.

These findings provided some information to be used by business consultants when counseling couples in business together or those considering entering business together. Future research should replicate this study with a larger probability sampling and should control for the composition of the family unit. In addition, these patterns should be explored longitudinally to find changes over time and qualitatively for a deeper understanding.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Gordon, Brett A.
Commitee: Ghormley, Yvette, Gordon, Brett A., Pogue, Laura A.
School: Northcentral University
Department: Management
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: DAI-A 74/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Entrepreneurship, Management, Individual & family studies
Keywords: Actor-partner interdependence model (APIM), Copreneurship, Family business, Work-family conflict
Publication Number: 3574019
ISBN: 978-1-303-46113-2
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