Cross-Cultural Work-Family Interfaces: Dual Career Couples Jaymee Froyalde Sam Lam Hisayo Murayoshi Steve Nguyen Kenneth Trinh Countries of Comparison USA & Japan Topics • USA Dual Careers Households • US Expatriates • Japanese Dual Career Households • Comparison • Implications on International Human Resource Management Definition • Dual Career Households: a household in which the couple each has a career path of their very own. USA Topics of Discussion • Overview of USA • Overview of Dual Career Couples in the USA • Current USA Expatriate System and Trends USA Overview • Land Mass 9,161,923 sq km • Government: Constitution-based federal republic, strong democratic tradition • Population: 293,027,571 • Diversity: white 77.1%, black 12.9%, Asian 4.2%, Amerindian and Alaska native 1.5%, native Hawaiian and other Pacific islander 0.3%, other 4% (2000) USA Economy • GDP: $10.99 trillion • most technologically powerful economy • Labor Force 146.5 million • per capita GDP: $37,800 US Dual Career Statistics • Represents 54% of married couples in the USA • Represents 45% of US labor force Benefits of Dual Career • Extra Income • Flexibility of Leaving, Transition Through, or Re-Entering Labor Force • More Equality • Happier Spouses Disadvantages of Dual Career Households • Reduction of Job Mobility for Spouses • Work-Family Conflicts • Household Responsibilities/Allocation Issues in Perspective • Working and Well-Being • Working-Family Conflict • Work-Family Spillover and Cross Over • Division of Labor • Prioritizing Careers Spillover Effects Positive Negative Positive Disagreemen Family- relationships ts leads to Work energize and poor improve work performance Experience Workload Work- makes one leads to Family more distraction interesting and irritability http://www.bc.edu/bc_org/avp/wfnetwork/rft/wfpedia/wfpDECent.html US Dual Career Expatriates • Definition: an employee, with a spouse who has a career of their own, that is sent to another country for an assignment abroad. US Dual Career Expatriate Data • 70% of expatriates has a partner/spouse that has a career of his/her own. • 91% of married female expatriates are in category of “dual-career couples” vs. only 50% of males Current Trends of US based Companies • More females are considered for oversees assignments (80% of women don’t turn down assignments.) • Short-term expatriate assignments are on the rise • Companies are still slow to address dual-career couple issues Problems with Current System • Concerns about spousal/dual career issues - #1 reason for rejecting assignment • Pay systems aren’t “dual-career” oriented • Women expatriates still aren’t taken seriously despite what research shows – that they possess valuable talent in IA’s Overview of Japan • Location: Eastern Asia, island chain between the North Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Japan, east of the Korean Peninsula • Population:127,330,002 (July, 2004) • GDP: $3.582 trillion (2003 est.) Time Use of Workers by Working Hours Men Women Housework 0.37 3.57 Child Care 0.03 0.18 Work 6.85 4.20 Tertiary Activities 6.15 5.42 Primary Activities 10.60 10.62 Total 24.00 24.00 Gender impact of work-family measures • Reduction of working hours • Non-core tracks in corporations • The child-care leave system Financial compensation • The child allowance • Deduction for dependents • Child rearing allowance Recommendations the Japanese government policy • Increased efforts towards further reduction of working hours. • Rapid elimination of the wage gap between men and women. • Quick resolution of various issues concerning part-time workers. • Efforts to heighten public awareness of work-family policies. • Comprehensive measures to assist economically disadvantaged families. • Spurring on economic growth with a view to lowering the unemployment rate. Japan Vs. United States Dual Career Couples • Housework Allocation • Childcare • Family Support Policies – Japan – United States Housework Allocation • Determinants of the amount of housework: – Earnings – Hours worked – Children Child Care • Who takes care of the children? • Children’s education Family Support Policies in Japan • Child Care Leave • Family Care Leave • Night Work • Overtime • Part-Time Work Law Family Support Policies in United States • Family and Medical Act Leave • Individual employers offer family policies to support dual earner couples What This Means • US lacks family support policies; therefore, IHRM must take the initiative • There is a certain need for family support policy to dual career Japanese expatriates Summary-United States • We all have our assumptions on the cultural differences between Japan and America but the truth is that both are similar in many cultural aspects of societal roles between men and women. • Regardless of the changing societal norms, the process of expatriations brings forth a universal challenge of co-existence of ethnic values and beliefs for Americans who settle in an Eastern culture. • Several factors can lead to an array of conclusions on Japanese and American culture but more importantly, the social skill of communication is the very reason in which a transition from a comfortable place to a foreign place is successful for a dual career family. American companies need to emphasize more on the linguistic part of the expatriation process Summary-Japan • In many instances the value of compensation plays a big role in regards to the welfare of the family for them to consider the move to a new world. • And for others, its all about the support for their family and extended family that will help them make that leap of faith towards expatriation. • Thus, the support has to be consistent and reliable enough where the simplest issues like schools, malls, and leisure is simplified enough for them to take the job. • The government also needs to play a bigger role in changing its view of women in the workforce and the way they are compensated.
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