This article investigates the gendered dynamics of motherhood and careers, as voiced by professionals in the knowledge-intensive business sector in Finland. It is informed by the CIAR method through 81 iterative, in-depth interviews with 23 women and 19 men. Among the women respondents with no children, one child, or two children, three dominant forms of discursive talk emerge: ‘It takes two to tango’, ‘It’s all about time management’ and ‘Good motherhood 2.0’. Though Finland provides a seemingly egalitarian Nordic welfare state context, with the ‘Finnish Dream’, women face contradictions between expectations of women as full-time ideal workers pursuing masculinist careers and continuing responsibilities at home, performing ‘good motherhood’. The women’s double strivings meet the double constraining demands of these ideals. The gendered pressures are imposed on the women by themselves, male colleagues, the organisation more broadly and society, leading the women to enact a form of ‘bounded individualism’.
- 512 Business and Management
- knowledge professionals
Areas of Strength and Areas of High Potential (AoS and AoHP)
- AoS: Responsible organising