Employer-based social networks for working mothers can be low-cost, innovative interventions designed to assist women in managing multiple life roles. This study presents research using a case study framework, specifically aimed at gaining a deeper understanding of how and to what extent social networks for working mothers impact their participants with regard to effectiveness, value and connection. This study was preceded by a positioning survey and included meeting observations, a pilot interview, and seven subsequent individual interviews with leaders and participants of a workplace social network for working mothers. The unit of measure for this study was the individual, featuring diversity of participants with regard to education, age, professional expertise, tenure with the organization, parenting experience, and network involvement.
Individual interview results were transcribed and analyzed to identify and confirm outcomes among participants that revealed impacts of advice, confidence, work-life balance, knowledge of employer and community, employer support of mothers, internal research resource, helping colleagues, positive feelings, social capital and support and empathy. This study concluded with research-based recommendations for the network, employing organization, and for further research.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. August 2009. Major: Work and Human Resource Education. Advisor: James M. Brown. 1 computer file (PDF); ix, 166 pages, appendices A-E.
Schultz, Jennifer Lynn.
A case study investigation of employed mothers' workplace formal social networks..
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