In India, the life and conditions of women are changing with its recent development. The changes are positive enough with respect to the empowerment of woman. They are free to make their decisions and are ready to set wings to their career. Women have now entered an all paid occupation irrespective of any barriers. They are given numerous opportunities for their sustainability. This was possible only due to awareness and motivation of people that women can work and this aspire them to grow. Sometimes the women even join the work force due to economic conditions of the family; they try to be the helping hand of the family by supporting them financially. This has positive effect on the family and their work life as well. People are more understanding in such cases. The marriage is smooth, family life is normal and the children are all fine until there is balancing issue with their corporate life and their personal life. Many successful women have been stars in their field. Such people who shine in their work life need to manage many other family responsibilities.
In the changing world scenario, the women are conquering the world with a huge bag of responsibilities behind them. They go parallel with their corporate as well as their personal life maintaining a proper equilibrium between the both. The study of work life balance of the women is a way to understand the responsibilities and the problems. A woman plays multiple roles such as employee, partner, mother, friend, daughter etc. They tend to manage various roles at a time, hence they will face lot many issues while balancing all the balls in air. The maintenance of the balance of their work and their life is difficult when it comes to the women more difficult when it’s a woman who goes for a project overseas and stays away from her family. The women are more burdened in such cases; they must handle their career development and their personal life as well. They must balance both with difficulty as both of them are equally important for them. They try to manage them to the core but sometimes staying away from family, the kids and their responsibilities it’s burdensome for them.
Work–life balance is a concept including proper prioritizing between “work” (career and ambition) and “lifestyle” (health, pleasure, leisure, family and spiritual development/meditation). This is related to the idea of lifestyle choice. The work–leisure dichotomy was invented in the mid-1801s. Paul Krassner remarked that anthropologists use a definition of happiness that is to have as little separation as possible “between your work and your play”. The expression “work–life balance” was first used in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s to describe the balance between an individual’s work and personal life. In the United States, this phrase was first used in 1986. According to 2010 National Health Interview Survey Occupational Health Supplement data, 16% of U.S. workers reported difficulty balancing work and family. Imbalance was more prevalent among workers aged 30–44 (19%) compared with other age groups; non-Hispanic black workers (19%) compared with non-Hispanic white workers (16%), and Hispanic workers (15%); divorced or separated workers (19%) compared with married workers (16%), widowed workers (13%), and never married workers (15%); and workers having a bachelor’s degree and higher (18%) compared with workers having a high school diploma or G.E.D. (16%), and workers with less than a high school education (15%). Workers in agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting industries (9%) had a lower prevalence rate of work–family imbalance compared to all employed adults (16%). Among occupations, a higher prevalence rate of work–family imbalance was found in legal occupations (26%), whereas a lower prevalence rate was observed for workers in office and administrative support (14%) and farming, forestry, and fishing occupations (10%).
Role of Gender and Family
Work–life conflict is not gender-specific. According to the Center for American Progress, 90 percent of working mothers and 95 percent of working fathers report work–family conflict. However, because of the social norms surrounding each gender role, and how the organization views its ideal worker, men and women handle the work–life balance differently. Organizations play a large part in how their employees deal with work–life balance. Some companies have taken proactive measures in providing programs and initiatives to help their employees cope with work–life balance. The conflict of work and family can be exacerbated by perceived deviation from the “ideal worker” archetype, leading to those with caretaker roles to be perceived as not as dedicated to the organization. This has a disproportionate impact on working mothers, who are less worthy of training than childless women. Research conducted by the Kenexa Research Institute (KRI) evaluated how male and female workers perceive work–life balance and found that women are more positive than men in how they perceive their company’s efforts to help them balance work and life responsibilities. The report is based on the analysis of data drawn from a representative sample of 10,000 U.S. workers who were surveyed through Work Trends, KRI’s annual survey of worker opinions. The results indicated a shift in women’s perceptions about work–life balance. In the past, women often found it more difficult to maintain balance due to the competing pressures at work and demands at home.
Changes in Perceived Gender Roles
Today there are many young women who do not want to just stay at home and do house work, but want to have careers. While women are increasingly represented in the work force, they still face challenges balancing work and home life. Both domestic and market labor compete for time and energy. Many men do not see work alone as providing their lives with full satisfaction; and want a balance between paid work and personal attachments, without being penalized at work. These men may desire to work part-time, to spend more time with their families.
More men are realizing that work is not their only primary source of fulfillment from life. Though working less means a smaller paycheck and higher stress levels, men are looking for flexibility just as much as women. However, with an ever-changing society, flexibility is becoming much more apparent. “It seems that some traditional stereotypes are starting to lessen just a bit in terms of who’s responsible for care of the children” says human resource specialist Steve Moore. Traditionalism is becoming less frequent due to what’s practical for each individual family.
Work-Life Balance among Women
Work-life balance is seen more as women issue due to the traditional mindset, where the woman is considered primarily responsible for the smooth running of the day to day affairs of the family irrespective of her job profile and official responsibilities that is why managing work and family responsibilities can be very difficult for women. The roles and expectation of women have changed significantly over the past 50 years. One consequence has been a shift in the importance of work relative to family and leisure. Information revolution and 24 × 7 work in the wake of global competition and global production networks are increasingly blurring the distinction between home and work. The unprecedented increase in number of dual earner households, which has increased the likelihood of those both male and female workers, will have domestic responsibilities in addition to work responsibilities. Work pressures have intensified in the past decade. Evidence suggests that the average time spent on job has increased drastically. As a result, work dominates the personal life. For every individual, there is a life at work and at home and a life in which they space for leisure and maintaining a balance between all these is crucial. If balance is not maintained between all these elements of life, then there would be a conflict.
Familial Influence on Life Choices
The familial influence appeared as a significant factor in life choices on work and family for all women. Familial influence refers to the extent to which the immediate family plays a role in creating the values and meaning around work and life for the women. The impact of familial influence ranged from setting goals for an engineering education from childhood, making decisions related to admission in engineering colleges, or relocating from a village to a city to get access to better education, or fulfilling dreams of a mother who herself could not aspire to become a professional during her youth.
Need of the Study
Work-life balance is vast area in Human Resource Management which tries to understand the problems faced by an employee in balancing their personal and corporate life. The study was about the work-life balance of the women going on overseas projects can make the researcher understand about their challenges and the issue they face while travelling in the path of the success with their family responsibilities.
The study was a better way to understand the baseline problems of the women who travel frequently and are staying away from their family for more than 2 weeks due to work. The study helped the researcher to understand about the challenges and barriers that women come across while working for an organization. Work life balance of the women going on overseas projects will certainly face many issues while going up the in ladder of success. The study focused about the difficulty of the women in balancing the work and life. Work-life balance is increasingly an issue for any country, especially in case of women. Jobs, the workplace and the work force are changing as:
· More women go to work
· More people juggle more than one job
· Workforce ages and is diverse
· Business wants highly skilled workers
· Technological changes influences a lot
Statement of the Problem
Many women in India are so capable that they can go officially abroad for completing their job responsibilities. While fulfilling their job needs they leave behind few of their personal responsibilities like their family and their children. The women faced problems like stress, tension over burden and helpless in emotional cases when it’s a mother.
They will be burdened with both office work and the children. They will be worried as who will be looking after their family during their absence. They also might have clash of thoughts with people around them, due to different culture. They face cross culture influence and language will be the major issue. The women have to be more conscious and cautious about the security. The must balance their lifestyle; way of living timings, language etc.
To study the Work-Life Balance of the Women going on ‘overseas projects’.
· To study the details of respondents and their overseas projects.
· To study the problems faced by the respondents going on overseas projects.
· To study about the physiological and psychological impact of overseas projects on the respondents.
· To study about the support system of respondents while they are on overseas projects
· To study the measure that they adapt to balance work and life during overseas projects.
Limitation of the Study
· The study tried in compilation and in analyzing the specific data required for the study of the work-life balance of women going on overseas projects.
· The study showcased the present conditions, challenges and the problems faced by the women employees in balancing their work and personal life.
· The study was confined within Chennai, included the IT and ITES companies for the purpose of the research.