Recognising diversity in managing work life issues of flexpatriates

Helene Mayerhofer (Institute of Human Resource Management, Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, Vienna, Austria)
Angelika Schmidt (Institute of Change Management and Management Development, Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, Vienna, Austria)
Linley Hartmann (Institute of Management, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia)
Regine Bendl (Institute of Gender and Diversity Management, Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, Vienna, Austria)

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

ISSN: 2040-7149

Publication date: 20 September 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to explore flexpatriates' perceptions of work life balance (WLB) issues and identify possible adjustments of WLB programs to better meet the needs of flexpatriates. This paper investigates flexpatriates' challenges at the interface of personal and work lives and their perception of standard WLB programs and then proposes organizational adjustments to better meet the needs of flexpatriates.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employed a qualitative research approach and two kinds of empirical data were collected: first, through in‐depth semi‐structured interviews with 40 employees involved in flexpatriate assignments in multinational companies operating in Austria and, second, through a document analysis of the homepages of their employing organizations to gain information about WLB practices.

Findings

Drawing upon the study findings, the authors present a typology of flexpatriates and propose a model that considers both WLB and work life imbalance as a desirable or acceptable option and offers a new theoretical perspective for examining organization and individual dimensions in WLB.

Originality/value

The authors' contribution is a new contextualization of WLB initiatives that incorporates both WLB and work life imbalance as valid perspectives of employees.

Keywords

Citation

Mayerhofer, H., Schmidt, A., Hartmann, L. and Bendl, R. (2011), "Recognising diversity in managing work life issues of flexpatriates", Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Vol. 30 No. 7, pp. 589-609. https://doi.org/10.1108/02610151111167043

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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