A cybernetic model of work-life balance through time. By: Adkins, Cheryl L.; Premeaux, Sonya F. Human Resource Management Review. Dec2019, Vol. 29 Issue 4

Answering a call for a more fully developed concept of work-life balance (WLB), we use person-environment fit and control theories to develop a model of WLB incorporating the work, family, and personal domains. We propose a cybernetic model which recognizes that individuals have a desired balance among the three domains that serves as a standard against which they compare their perceptions of WLB at any given point in time. Our cybernetic model suggests that individuals will seek to restore balance when a negative imbalance is perceived. Further we propose that role senders and resources in the domains, as well as anticipated future WLB and retrospective perceptions of WLB also affect desired balance and actions. We discuss the implications of the proposed model for future research and practice. • Includes person-environment fit as a theoretical basis as suggested by work-life scholars. • Incorporates psychological time as a contextual factor in work-life balance perceptions. • Employs a holistic view of work-life balance incorporating the personal domain in addition to the work and family domains. • Develops a cybernetic model of work-life balance incorporating current, anticipated, and assessments of fit.