Narratives of spousal support for the careers of men in managerial posts
Heikkinen, S., & Lämsä, A.-M. (2017). Narratives of spousal support for the careers of men in managerial posts. Gender, Work and Organization, 24(2), 171-193. https://doi.org/10.1111/gwao.12157
Published inGender, Work and Organization
DisciplineBasic or discovery scholarshipJohtaminenBasic or discovery scholarshipManagement and Leadership
© 2020 The Authors
This article analyses the narratives of men managers to see how they perceive their wives' support in relation to their careers. Our aim is to focus on different forms of spousal support and explore how the support can evolve in the course of the men's careers. We are also interested in what kind of gender relations men produce when narrating their experiences of spousal support for their career. The research material comprises interviews with 29 managers who are fathers. In contrast to many previous studies, the results here suggest that spousal support is not a fixed or uncomplicated phenomenon but is constructed as various and flexible by men: negotiated , enriching and declining. The narrative analysis, in which we detected three different story‐lines — romance, ‘happily‐ever‐after’ and tragedy — shows that the most positive narratives in terms of life satisfaction and career success were those in which spousal support was constructed as negotiated and men were willing to be flexible and adaptable in their gender relations with their spouse. More attention to a father's work and family integration is needed in the field of management and organizations. ...
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- Kauppakorkeakoulu 
Related funder(s)Academy of Finland
Funding program(s)Strategic research programmes, AoF
Additional information about fundingThis research was part of the programme Equality in Society (WeAll project, 292883), supported by strategic research funding from the Academy of Finland (www.weallfinland.fi). We gratefully acknowledge this support.
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