Work-life balance has been a widely studied topic within Organizational Communication. Many researches focus on how to achieve balance; this study is going to look at how higher or lower levels of organizational bureaucratization affects work-life balance and job satisfaction within theatre organizations. The balance between work and life has become a problem for employees to handle due to many factors like technology, and work overload that has created a blend of work and life. This topic is important to the field because research has shown that when work and life is not significantly balanced, it could cause work-family conflict, stress, and job dissatisfaction. These all can lead to an employee reducing production, and creating higher turnover rates (I do realize I need sources for this, I remember reading about it in a specific article and now I can’t find the article. If I cannot find it, I will take this out, or find another article). In addition, when organizations are flexible with their policies about work-life balance, does this have a correlation to the level of bureaucratization of the organization? Individuals that have more decision making authority and power within their organization might have more of a say in and more flexible work-life policies, achieving balance. First the literature of work-life balance research will be examined, along with organizational bureaucratization, and job satisfaction in order to get an idea of what has been done already in these topics. Many of the research questions are geared towards finding. Little research has been done within theatre organizations that focus on the organizational communication aspect, so it will be interesting to see how these employees handle work-life balance and how much power and say they get.
Work-life balance is a term used for “framing the conflict between one’s paid obligations and one’s discretionary time and interests” (Yoshimura, 2013, p. 7). Essentially work-life balance looks at the problems that overtime of work causes for an individual’s personal life, and how a personal life might affect their work life. There are many factors like perceptions of work-life balance, work family conflict, organizational climate, and age can affect the balance between one’s personal life, and one’s work life and much research has been done to examine the fine line that separates each.
One point to look at is the ideology of work-life balance from an employee stance and from an organization stance. Cowan and Hoffman (2007) looked at how employees define the terms “work”, “life”, and “balance”, to look at how they understand the concept and how it affects their work-life balance. What they found was that participants defined work-life balance as “flexibility on the part of the organization” (Cowan & Hoffman, 2007, p. 40). The majority of the definitions included the idea of flexibility whether it was time, space (as in working from home), evaluation of worker, and compensation.