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Monday, May 21, 2012

Role reversal: Men pursuing jobs once thought of as belonging to women

Observation:  This morning, the New York Times published an interesting article on gender role-reversals in the workplace.  But also important, the story suggested a shift toward a more modest “American dream” since the 2007-2009 recession; one that is focused on simply staying ahead of financial commitments, and having enough left over to go out for some dinner and entertainment once-in-a-while, take a modest vacation once a year, or otherwise enjoy occasional “small indulgences.”    (Not necessarily a big house and fancy cars.)  Click here to see the story.

Implications:   “Inverted expectations” is how this Times story refers to what we’ve called, “Reconciliation.”  Worth noting, as we’re seeing more and more evidence of this shift that we called out several years ago.

If men are opting into more roles that were traditionally held by women, what does that mean to the family dynamic?  Are women more likely to bring home the “breadwinner” paycheck, and men more likely to provide the “additional income?”  If she carries a greater income burden, is he assuming a greater role in such household responsibilities as childcare, housekeeping, and laundry?  If these kinds of changes are happening in the workplace or household… what do they look like by the time those changes walk into your store, dealership, or lobby?

Mike Anderson, for the Elm Street Economics consumer trends blog. A service of The Center for Sales Strategy, Inc.

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