Managing Dual-Career Couples

A discussion on Dual Career Couples

When a couple takes up two different career yet lives together, they are described as Dual-career Couples. Barbara Schneider wrote in Being Together, Working apart, how this works is affecting the well-being. It models the thought process of the family through the redistribution of responsibilities.  C. Susan Weiler and Paul H. Yancey, in their study, Dual Career Couples and Science: Opportunities, Challenges and Strategies mention how this phenomenon brought a demographical change. The society from a single income household metamorphosed into a dual-income. They emphasised, if organization can support dual career-couples will find greater applicant pool and more stable workforce.

Certain areas which have propelled the formation of dual career couples are economic security, self-actualization hence more balanced households. The responsibilities which were earlier polarised became lot more flexible in terms of their delivery, hence more effectively done. If an organization looks forward to optimise on this, they would have to re-think the policies.

Here we discuss few areas which may require certain changes to accommodate the dual career couple.

  1. Expat : When one spouse is being sent for an international program , arrangements must be made to adjust the other working spouse as well.  Work Visa and job assistance are the areas where the accompanying spouse would require support.
  2. Job Allocation: Incase the couple is working in the same organization, job should be allocated so that there is no direct reporting relationship. The organization needs to maintain that no nepotism can ever breed. The couples may be allocated jobs in different business units with completely different reporting lines.
  3. Alternative work schedules: Work is scheduled for the couple in alternative arrangement. It is taken care that when one of the spouse goes to work the other one gets to spend time at home.
  4. Benefits: Organizations may consider certain benefits including family support with child care, educational assistance and parental leaves.  Few organizations may have tie-up with educational institution that offer admission assistance to the wards of dual career couples .Furthermore, Parental leaves are offered to the couple to take care of any requirement including illness of parents.
  5. Relocation assistance – Incase one of the spouse is made to relocate, job and monetary assistance is offered to accommodate the career of the other spouse.

The equity from a dual career couple is high, hence it justifies the investment on them. The more the couple gets stabilised, lesser they are likely to job-hop. Reflecting F.W Faber’s words “Remember that if the opportunities for great deeds should never come, the opportunities for good deeds are renewed day by day. The thing for us to long for is the goodness, not the glory.”



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  • preeti9504

    somewhere i am confused with the termenology “dual career couples ” does it means that the couples perform one more career apart from there regular job for eg.if a preson is a teacher, then he is also taking tution classes am i right or not

  • Dear Preeti,

    It means the couples who are working and have separate careers. It may include common-preneurs , couples who start a company and both works in that. It may also include couples who are working in completely different roles. Though what we tried covering here is, the couple who works for the same employer. The initiatives we have mentioned would be applicable for all depending upon the Organizational policies.


  • YK Dilkshit

    1.The suggestions sound good but the whole issue is that no company or organisation or govt. has formed clear policies on this issue.
    2. Human factors are always weighed against commercial and procedural factors.
    3. If you think you are telling any thining that itself explains the styory ? because every activity at least on earth should serve the human ? if what you write is needed that means the prirrities of human managemnent do not reflect humanity.