Flexible fathers are 'happier and more committed to work'Wednesday, 25 May 2011 08:57
Fathers who have flexible working hours in the private sector have better physical and psychological health, are less stressed and more committed to their employer, a new report suggests.
The research, from Working Families and Lancaster University Management School, also found dads working flexibly in the public sector are less troubled by their work-life balance and sense of overload.
However – probably due to current stresses and job insecurity in the sector – they are less likely to report higher levels of wellbeing and commitment, according to the study.
Meanwhile, fathers on a low income feel less stressed if they are able to work flexibly, the report highlighted.
Lead researcher from Lancaster University Dr Caroline Gatrell said the results show that flexible working makes a positive difference to the lives of working fathers, which benefits both fathers and employers.
“Fathers who work flexibly have better health, better relationships with colleagues and feel more in control of their work-life balance, especially if they are on low incomes,” she said.
“However, flexible working is not a magic solution and it cannot altogether cancel out the effects of anxiety in difficult times, such as recession.”
The two year Big Lottery project involved more than 1,000 fathers in two large organisations in the private and public sectors.