Work‐life balance as source of job dissatisfaction and withdrawal attitudes

Joanna Hughes (Human Resources Department, NHS Tayside‐Acute Services Division, Ninewells Hospital, Dundee, UK)
Nikos Bozionelos (Durham Business School, Durham, UK)

Personnel Review

ISSN: 0048-3486

Publication date: 2 January 2007



The purpose of this article is to explore the views of male workers in a male dominated occupation on issues that pertain to work‐life balance.


The study was qualitative in nature. Semi‐structured interviews were conducted with 20 bus drivers employed by a single company in order to identify their perceptions on the following: whether issues related to work‐life balance were sources of concern and dissatisfaction; how concern over issues related to work‐life balance was compared to other sources of concern and dissatisfaction; and whether issues related to work‐life balance were linked with withdrawal attitudes and behaviours.


It emerged that work‐life imbalance was not only a source of concern, but also that it was the major source of dissatisfaction for participants. Furthermore, participants made a clear connection between problems with work‐life balance and withdrawal behaviours, including turnover and non‐genuine sick absence.


The study has value at both scholarly and practice level. At scholarly level, the research investigated an important contemporary issue within a neglected group: male workers in a low profile male dominated occupation. At practice level, the findings suggest that work life imbalance incurs tangible costs to organisations; hence, organisations need to establish human resource systems to deal with it. Furthermore, pertinent legislation may need to be developed and enacted.



Joanna Hughes and Nikos Bozionelos (2007) "Work‐life balance as source of job dissatisfaction and withdrawal attitudes", Personnel Review, Vol. 36 No. 1, pp. 145-154

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Copyright © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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