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Small Family Business Survival: Strategies For Coping With Overlapping Family And Business Demands

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    (Department of Apparel, Educational Studies, and Hospitality Management, 1066 Le Baron Hall, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011-1121, USA)


    (Department of Textiles, Clothing and Design, 105 HECO, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68583-0800, USA)


    (Department of Statistics and Department of Political Science, 539 Ross Hall, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011-1204, USA)


    (Department of Child Development and Family Science, NDSU Dept. 2615, P.O. Box 6050, 283G EML Hall, North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND 58105-6050, USA)

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    This study identified 14 adjustment strategies employed by household and business managers to cope with overlapping work and family demands using data from 1997 and 2000 versions of the National Family Business Survey (NFBS). Significant differences were found between surviving small family firms by managerial role (single or dual) regarding gross income, gender, number of children under age 18, community size and trade sector. Both surviving and non-surviving enterprises tended to bring household work to the business field when times were hectic and demanding, and took care of family responsibilities while at the business. However, in non-surviving businesses, business managers reported a greater tendency to bring work home, demonstrating that work entered the family field more frequently than in surviving businesses. Managers of surviving businesses were more likely to make financial adjustments by hiring temporary help for the business or home, and less likely to ask others to help in the business without pay. Significant differences were also noted regarding the use of non-financial adjustments; managers of surviving family businesses were able to shift away from business work to spend time on family aspects, and to spend less time sleeping to help the business.

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    Article provided by World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd. in its journal Journal of Developmental Entrepreneurship.

    Volume (Year): 14 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 03 ()
    Pages: 209-232

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    Handle: RePEc:wsi:jdexxx:v:14:y:2009:i:03:p:209-232
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