A1 Journal article (refereed)
Narratives of spousal support for the careers of men in managerial posts (2017)

Heikkinen, S., & Lämsä, A.-M. (2017). Narratives of spousal support for the careers of men in managerial posts. Gender, Work and Organization, 24(2), 171-193. https://doi.org/10.1111/gwao.12157

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Heikkinen, Suvi; Lämsä, Anna-Maija

Journal or series: Gender, Work and Organization

ISSN: 0968-6673

eISSN: 1468-0432

Publication year: 2017

Volume: 24

Issue number: 2

Pages range: 171-193

Publisher: Blackwell Publishers

Publication country: United Kingdom

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/gwao.12157

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/53335


This article analyses the narratives of men managers to see how they perceive their wives' support in relation to their careers. Our aim is to focus on different forms of spousal support and explore how the support can evolve in the course of the men's careers. We are also interested in what kind of gender relations men produce when narrating their experiences of spousal support for their career. The research material comprises interviews with 29 managers who are fathers. In contrast to many previous studies, the results here suggest that spousal support is not a fixed or uncomplicated phenomenon but is constructed as various and flexible by men: negotiated , enriching and declining. The narrative analysis, in which we detected three different story‐lines — romance, ‘happily‐ever‐after’ and tragedy — shows that the most positive narratives in terms of life satisfaction and career success were those in which spousal support was constructed as negotiated and men were willing to be flexible and adaptable in their gender relations with their spouse. More attention to a father's work and family integration is needed in the field of management and organizations.

Keywords: men; fathers; career

Free keywords: managers; spousal support; doing gender; narratives

Contributing organizations

Related projects

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2017

JUFO rating: 2

Last updated on 2023-27-02 at 10:32