Getting In, Getting On, Getting Out
Research Handbooks in Business and Management series
Edited by Adelina M. Broadbridge and Sandra L. Fielden
Chapter 22: Pursuing partnerships: flexible work arrangements in US accounting and law firms
This chapter examines the perceptions of female accountants and attorneys employed in US accounting and law firms regarding their possibilities of becoming partners in their firms, and specifically, what strategies may be most useful in terms of reaching that goal. A mixed-method approach was used including a review of secondary source data on characteristics of the US workforce and work schedules, publications from law and accounting professional membership organizations and advocacy groups, and interviews with key informants from law and accounting firms. The research focused on middle-and upper-level female managers who constitute the pipeline to partnership positions in their firms. The focus of the study is availability, use of, and experiences with flexible work arrangements (FWAs) in key informants’ firms. We do not attempt to definitively link the use of FWAs and women’s promotion to partnership (or lack thereof) in accounting and law firms, rather, we use the research to explore perceptions and suggest best practices.
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