Wednesday, 11 April 2007

Is working from home more stressful for women than men?

Working from home ('teleworking') sounds cushdy: after all, you're your own boss, the commute entails crawling out of bed to your desk, and you don't have anyone checking how long you took for lunch. But at what cost? That's the question posed by Terry Hartig and colleagues who investigated the possibility that teleworking compromises the home as a place of refuge and restoration.

When the Swedish National Energy Administration relocated from Stockholm to Eskilstuna, 60 miles away, employees who stayed in their jobs were given the option to work from home for up to three days a week. Hartig and colleagues surveyed 58 employees who took the teleworking option, together with 43 employees who continued doing all their work in the office. The researchers were particularly interested in how much overlap the employees experienced between their work and home lives.

To their surprise, the researchers found that overall, the teleworking employees didn't experience any greater overlap between their work and home lives compared with the employees who always worked at the office. However, there was a crucial difference between the sexes. Whereas male teleworkers actually reported experiencing less overlap between their work and private lives than the male employees at the office, the reverse was true for female teleworkers, for whom working at home had led to increased work/life overlap.

“This result bears on the possibility that women are more susceptible to the costs of telework”, the researchers said. The finding is consistent with research published in 2000 that found female teleworkers tended to spend more time engaged in domestic chores than male teleworkers with the same work load.

Another finding from the current study was that setting aside a room in the home for work doesn't necessarily prevent work/life overlap. While teleworkers who set aside a room reported less 'spatial overlap' between their work and private lives, they didn't report any less mental overlap. “Out of sight need not mean out of mind”, the researchers said.
_________________________________

Hartig, T. Kylin, C. & Johansson, G. (2007). The telework tradeoff: Stress mitigation vs. constrained restoration. Applied Psychology: An International Review, 56, 231-253.

Post written by Christian Jarrett (@psych_writer) for the BPS Research Digest.

4 comments:

  1. Hi,

    I have been working from home for two years now and I absolutely love it. Not only am I my own boss with no set hours but I am able to be home for my husband and children.

    Don't get me wrong, it takes a lot of dicipline but I wouldn't have it any other way.

    The one thing I've learned about my web business is that exposure means everything.

    Getting More Exposure = Getting More Sales. So, how do you go about getting better exposure? Well, I don't know about you, but what I do now is to DO what the Big Boys online are doing, and completely ignore what they are saying.

    Have you ever noticed that when THEY release some new product or service, it's all of the sudden all over the web... I mean, from out of no where with a brand new site and offer, you find these guys in almost every marketing medium, yet in most cases, when you waste your money on their product, they are telling you to do some single thing and promising you the world if you do it... But wait a minute...

    You were exposed to them in a wide variety of places, yet they are telling you that you only need to do this thing that they are selling... Odd isn't it?

    Once I decided to do what they were doing instead of do what they were saying, my exposure jumped up to the exact same level of exposure they were getting... All that I needed to do was find out what tools they were using to promote their own sites, and then use those same tools (simple :-)

    Guess what?... I did it... I found the place where all of the gurus go for their personal marketing needs, in order to get the massive exposure to sell you and me some crappy little product or service that claims to be the cure-all of the century... lol, yet they are using someone elses software to promote that offer.

    Click the link below and see for yourself the very tools that the internet elite are using::
    http://www.marketersos.com/go.php?smw1974&16

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh,Sara! How utterly unfair of you.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sofia4:31 pm

    Sara, are you promoting a website?

    ReplyDelete
  4. http://workfromhomeresearch.blogspot.com/2011/07/managing-work-at-home.html?showComment=1359363675109

    ReplyDelete