Journal of Business and Psychology

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 39–53 | Cite as

Work-Family Behavioral Role Conflict: Scale Development and Validation

  • Malissa A. ClarkEmail author
  • Rebecca J. Early
  • Boris B. Baltes
  • Daniel Krenn
Original Paper


Common measures of work-family conflict focus on a person’s perception of conflict. However, these perceptual measures may not provide a complete picture of the range of specific instances of conflict individuals may experience. In the present study, we developed a psychometrically sound assessment of work-family behavioral role conflict through a multi-study process. In phase 1, an inductive approach was used to identify a list of specific behavioral instances of work-family conflict (both work-to-family and family-to-work) through focus group interviews. In phase 2, we reduced the total number of scale items, by eliminating behavioral items with importance scores below a minimum cutoff. In phase 3, we further reduced the total number of scale items and examined the intercorrelations between our new measure and two widely used perceptual measures of work-family conflict. Finally, in phase 4, we examined the incremental validity of the final behavioral measure above and beyond the most widely used measure of perceptions of work-family conflict (i.e., Carlson, Kacmar, & Williams, Journal of Vocational Behavior, 56, 249–276, 2000). Results indicate that the work-family behavioral role conflict scale explained a significant amount of incremental variance over a perceptual measure of work-family conflict for several important outcomes, including turnover, psychological strain, burnout, and depression. Overall, this study illustrates the benefit of assessing behavioral incidences of work-family conflict in addition to assessing perceptions of work-family conflict.


Work-family conflict Scale development Measurement Behavioral checklist Behavioral role conflict 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Malissa A. Clark
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rebecca J. Early
    • 2
  • Boris B. Baltes
    • 3
  • Daniel Krenn
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of GeorgiaAthensUSA
  2. 2.AlixPartners, LLPSouthfieldUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyWayne State UniversityDetroitUSA

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