1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Performance of multiple roles is part and parcel of an individual’s professional life. As employees perform multiple roles, they have to face multiple demands put on them by others; both within and outside the organization (Shailaja & Kumar, 2011). The pressures of work, for those women in work, have been intensifying in recent decades. Factors such as the advances in information technology and information load, the need for speed of response, the importance attached to the quality of customer service and its implications for constant availability and the pace of change with its resultant upheavals and adjustments all demand for the employed woman’s time and can be sources of pressure (Aravind & Paramashiviah 2011).
A variety of antecedents including role ambiguity, role conflict, time demands, and involvement in both the work and family domains are directly and indirectly and positively related to work and family conflict. The most common problem that working women suffer is intense psychological stress (Daultzen et al cited in Arathi & Rajkumar, 2015).
In cities, the long-distance from home to workplace, late working hours, etc., pose a great problem in balancing between work and family life. When female employees are deficient in spending quality time with their families, work and family conflicts crop up. Today women working in corporate sectors have long working hours. Over time the process of working long hours disturbs the balance between work and nonwork life. Lack of work-life balance not only affects the individual but also his organization (Arathi & Rajkumar, 2015).
Work and family constructs are two important aspects of employees’ life and juggling between these two spheres is part of everyday life for millions of employees across the globe (Karimi, Jomehri, Asadzade, & Sohrabi, 2012).
Arguably, work-family balance most especially in the Nigerian context is an issue that bothers women in employment than men (Okonkwo, 2012). This may well be because women combine the very tasking domestic duties which include childcare with their paid work activities. Although both men and women are said to experience inter-role conflict between work and family domains (Walker, Wang & Redmond, 2008) but women typically assume more family responsibilities than men (Pillinger, 2002). Similarly, managing work and family obligations are particularly difficult for women in a patriarchal society (Rehman & Roomi, 2012). For example in Nigeria, the domestic duties of tidying the home, cooking for the family, laundry work, and childcare are exclusively women’s jobs, many of whom are also engaged in full-time paid employment (Okonkwo, 2012).
In this regard, Jacobs and Gerson, (2004) indicate that psychological consequences of combining domestic duties with work responsibilities squarely fall on women. Thus, the demands of work and home pose great challenges for female employees in fulfilling the multiple roles (Peng, IIies & Dimotakis, 2011).
Three indicators have been suggested to maintain a fulfilled life and fulfill organizational commitments, productivity, and development. First is work-related factors causing problems in work-life imbalance due to excessive workload, more pressure, excessive working hours. Second related to outside the work that includes social influence, families, friends, dependent responsibilities. Third are the factors that include awareness about the methods and policies to manage this work-life imbalance (Guest, 2002).
Imbalance in work and life means that the two phases of responsibilities are not being fulfilled. More or less in one phase may lead to disturbance in another also which affect both the work life and personal of an employee. Work stress and work-life imbalance are correlated with workaholism regardless of gender (Aziz & Cunningham, 2008).
A central characteristic of work-life balance is the amount of time a female employee spends at work. There are indications that long work hours may harm personal health, endanger the safety and increase stress for the female employee. Developing economies like Nigeria are faced with serious economic challenges and labor market pressures added to poor social infrastructures, poverty, high unemployment, and corruption. These conditions further exacerbate the work and life of the average Nigerian female employee whose aim is to make a living and who may have to arduously build up accommodating arrangements and cognitive psychological coping behaviors that stimulate desirable satisfaction and effectual functioning both at work and at home. Most female employees in Nigeria are affected by a lack of work flexibility, elevated work pressures, and long working hours; a situation that decreases their job performance and productivity (Fapohunda, 2014).
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The importance of work-life balance, whether implicit or explicit to the organizations and employees cannot be ignored. This is because when female employees struggle to balance their work and family lives, their families and work will be negatively affected. They will be unable to attend to far-reaching family issues, lateness and absenteeism at work will set in, and they will lose concentration at work. Several studies such as Poelmans & Sahibzada (2004) and Lapierre et al (2008) have confirmed that work-family policies can lessen to the minimum levels the issue of lateness, absenteeism, stress, work-family conflict, and increased productivity, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment.
Owing to the high level of unemployment that has plagued the Nigerian labor market, organizations and employers of labor mostly in the private sector have taken advantage of this menace by always demanding unattainable and unrealistic results from their female employees with little or no concerns for their social-family wellbeing. This has led to broken homes, job dissatisfaction and sub-optimal commitment, and underperformance by many female employees.
Many of the studies on work-life balance and performance of female employees were done outside Nigeria. In Nigeria, most of the available studies about work-life balance and organizational performance such as Okonkwo (2012), Ojo (2012), Oludayo, Gberevbie & Popoola (2015) were too brief and lacked depths. Moreover, these researches were also theoretical studies whose findings were subjectively based on researchers’ personal opinions. It is noted that the past studies did not give adequate attention to the work-life balance and performance of female employees in the banking industry in Nigeria. Hence the undertaking of this study will fill in the gap in knowledge by critically investigating the effects of Work-Life Balance on the Performance of female employees in the banking industry with a special reference to Guaranty Trust Bank Nig. PLC.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The study was conducted with the following objectives;
a. To examine the effect of work-life balance on the performance of female employees.
b. To determine the effect of work-life balance on the commitment of female employees.
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