Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/107945
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Type: Journal article
Title: Dual careers: the new norm for Gen Y professionals?
Author: Clarke, M.
Citation: Career Development International, 2015; 20(6):562-582
Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing
Issue Date: 2015
ISSN: 1362-0436
1758-6003
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Marilyn Clarke
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to use the kaleidoscope career model as a lens through which to explore the career choices and decisions of young professional couples and the strategies that they use to facilitate successful dual careers while attempting to balance their work and non-work lives. Design/methodology/approach – Data were gathered through face-to-face interviews with 18 couples. Couples were interviewed separately to explore how individual career values and choices shape decisions in partnership. Template analysis was used to identify career patterns as defined by the kaleidoscope career model. Findings – Gender-based patterns suggested by the kaleidoscope career model appear to be giving way to different patterns based on individual career aspirations, earning capacity and motivation within a dual career (as opposed to simply dual income) household. For some young professionals challenge and balance are equally important and so unlike the original interpretation of the KCM their careers reflect dual priorities not challenge followed by balance as their careers evolve. Research limitations/implications – The sample size is small and participants were recruited through purposeful sampling which may have resulted in a more homogeneous cohort than would have been achieved through random sampling. Practical implications – Changing demographic profiles and emerging social norms are changing the way Gen Y approach work and careers. Organisations and professional bodies need to respond to these changes through implementation of appropriate HR policies within supportive organisational cultures if they are to attract and retain young professionals. Social implications – This research is important because there is clearly a gap between changes at a societal level and the way in which organisations are responding to those changes. The paper provides insights into how public policy and organisational practices can be designed and implemented to meet the needs and expectations of Gen Y professionals. Originality/value – This study provides an insight into the way Gen Y professionals are navigating dual careers as opposed to dual incomes. It builds on and expands the kaleidoscope career model by showing that Gen Y professionals are less constrained by gender stereotypes than previous generations in their quest for challenge and balance and that some couples are determined to have both challenge and balance, not either/or.
Keywords: Balance; challenge; Gen Y; dual careers; kaleidoscope career
Rights: © Emerald Group Publishing Limited 2015. Published by Emerald Group Publishing Limited
RMID: 0030045841
DOI: 10.1108/CDI-10-2014-0143
Appears in Collections:Business School publications

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