The purpose of this paper is to explore the effect of self-employed work characteristics (consumer orientation, innovativeness, number of employees, motivation, and…
The purpose of this paper is to explore the effect of self-employed work characteristics (consumer orientation, innovativeness, number of employees, motivation, and entrepreneurial phase) on work-life balance (WLB) satisfaction.
The job demands and resources approach is applied to test whether self-employed work characteristics are evaluated as job demands or resources for WLB. The Global Entrepreneurship Data (2013) offer a unique opportunity to conduct multilevel analysis among a sample of self-employed workers in 51 countries (N=11,458). Besides work characteristics, this paper tests whether country context might explain variation in WLB among the self-employed.
The results of this study reveal that there is a negative relation between being exposed to excessive stress and running a consumer-oriented business and WLB. Being motivated out of opportunity is positively related to WLB. In addition, the results indicate that country context matters. A higher human development index and more gender equality are negatively related to WLB, possibly because of higher social expectations and personal responsibility. The ease of doing business in a country was positively related to the WLB of self-employed workers.
For some workers self-employment might be a way to combine work and responsibilities in other life domains, but this does not seem to be valid in all cases.
This paper contributes to current literature on the WLB of self-employed workers by showing how work characteristics can be evaluated as job demands or resources. Including work characteristics in future research might be a solution for acknowledging the heterogeneity among self-employed workers.
The purpose of this paper is to map and understand work-family state support for the self-employed compared to employees across European countries.
To map state work-family support policies for the self-employed, an overview of public childcare, maternity, paternity, and parental leave arrangements across European countries is created based on databases, local government web sites, and local experts’ country notes. Secondary data analyses are conducted in order to compare support for the self-employed to support for employees and across countries. Differences across countries are analysed from a welfare state regime perspective, which explicates assumptions about the role of the government in providing work-family state support and which is often used in research on work-family support for employees.
Results show that, in general, the self-employed receive less work-family state support than employees or none at all. The extensiveness of work-family state support varies widely across European countries. Patterns of welfare states regimes, which explain variation in work-family support for employees, can also be found in the context of self-employment.
Findings result in practical suggestions for policy makers at the European and national level to monitor policy compliance considering maternity leave for the self-employed, to increase childcare support, and to rethink the European Entrepreneurship 2020 Action Plan.
Work-family state support for the growing number of self-employed has never been mapped before, although this is a very topical issue for (European) policy makers. This paper offers a starting point to contextualise and understand the way self-employed experience the work-family interface in different country contexts.