The purpose of this paper is to explore: How do changes in the role of the husband affect the marriage of a woman entrepreneur? How do changes in the marriage affect the woman entrepreneur and her relationship with her business?
A novel theoretical approach based on marriage contract theory, gender role ideology and psychological contracts was used. Qualitative methodology included analysis of multiple cases based on rich interview data gathered from 12 Scandinavian couples.
Research revealed that the pattern of dominance between the husband and wife, the gender role ideologies of the two spouses, and the interaction between this pattern and the gender role ideologies, and overall level of marital harmony were key determinants of husbands’ spousal support.
Sample size and geographical limitations. Future research: exploring other cultural settings, further application of marriage and psychological contracts in female entrepreneurship; studies of the impact areas of the husband in the wife’s business – also from the perspective of implicit contracts.
Research sheds light on how women run their businesses and how the changing roles of the spouse alter marriage dynamics and influence the wife-business relationship.
Findings benefit female entrepreneurs considering the launch of a business, couples in which the wife currently owns a business, state and governmental policymakers, business consultants, and entrepreneurship instructors. These findings can help couples better prepare for the demands of entrepreneurship.
For scholars: expanded understanding of the work-family interface of female entrepreneurs via novel theoretical approach. For business practitioners: understanding the impact of a spouse on life and career of female entrepreneur.
Nikina, A., Shelton, L.M. and LeLoarne, S. (2015), "An examination of how husbands, as key stakeholders, impact the success of women entrepreneurs", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 22 No. 1, pp. 38-62. https://doi.org/10.1108/JSBED-01-2012-0002
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