Role Stress and Job Outcomes in Public Accounting: Have the Gender Experiences Converged?

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Using data collected from professionals in a large U.S. national public accounting firm, we explored gender differences in perceived levels of role stress and job outcomes as well as the effects of a healthy lifestyle as a coping mechanism for role stress, burnout and related job outcomes. Our large sample size (1,681) and equal participation by women (49.7%) and men (50.3%) allowed us to analyze the causal relationships of these variables using a previously tested multi-disciplinary research model (Jones, Norman, & Wier, 2010). We found that women and men perceive similar levels of role stress as defined by role ambiguity and role overload, and that women perceive less role conflict. Men and women perceive similar levels of job satisfaction and job performance. Contrary to earlier studies, women do not report higher levels of turnover intentions. Results show that efforts of the public accounting firms over the past decade may be somewhat successful in reducing the levels of role stress and turnover intentions among women. Another plausible explanation could be that an expansionist theory of gender, work and family (Barnett & Hyde, 2001) may now be responsible for improved well-being of females to the point where the genders have converged in their experience of role stress and job outcomes in public accounting.


Advances in Accounting Behavioral Research



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Accounting and Financial Management

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