Managerial Women and the Work-Home Interface: Does Age of Child Matter

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Women In Management Review


Sociology & Anthropology


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore whether empirical support exists for two commonly held beliefs about the work-home interface: women, and particularly managerial women, are prone to “super-mother” or “super-manage” in an effort to balance both career and child-rearing, and these demands diminish markedly when children reach school age.

Design/methodology/approach – Via a survey mailed to their home, 1,103 managerial and non-managerial men and women completed measures of work-home and home-work conflict, work-related stress and strain, and reported their number of work, domestic, and leisure hours per week.

Findings – Somewhat consistent with the popular beliefs, the authors found that managerial women reported working significantly more in the home; measures of conflict and strain, however, while showing some effect were not impacted to the degree that managerial women's combined number of work and home hours per week might suggest. The authors also found that measures of hours, conflict, and strain did not diminish abruptly when children entered school, due perhaps in part to manager's increased work hours and managerial women's renewed work emphasis when children entered school. Measures of hours, conflict, and strain did show some reduction for parents of teenaged children, although they were still significantly higher than those of nonparents.

Originality/value – Aside from being one of the few empirical papers to examine the impact of child rearing on managerial women, our data show how these demands are not confined to working parents of preschoolers.