MANAGEMENT CONSULTANCIES DISCURSIVE CONSTRUCTION OF WORK-LIFE BALANCE : A DISCOURSE ANALYSIS OF WEB PAGES

University essay from Uppsala universitet/Företagsekonomiska institutionen; Uppsala universitet/Företagsekonomiska institutionen

Abstract:

Academics, practitioners and media agree that the topic of work-life balance is on the agenda and valued by the new business generation. Although Sweden might be considered a working friendly country, the management consultancy industry is not recognized to be the same. With an institutional perspective we will through a discourse analysis investigate the communication on Swedish management consultancies web pages in order to explore how consultancies relate to the work-life balance discourse. In this study we look at work-life balance communication as a continuum with abstract and concrete as two opposites where the level of concreteness will decide the level of responsibility dedicated from the organizations regarding employees` work-life balance. Our findings suggest that the discourse is mostly composed of abstract descriptive talk, which indicates that the communication exists as a legitimizing result of institutional pressures, and might not be an essential matter for the concultancies` everyday practice. A big part of the responsibility to achieve a work-life balance is put upon the individual employee and even though initiatives are presented they are seldom followed up by concrete targets or supported with results.

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