Women really ARE better at multi-tasking then men… and working mothers spend almost half their day doing two things at once

4th Dec

An article regarding multi-tasking and how working mothers multitask more than 40% of their waking hours compared to fathers that spend that time multitasking in a week. It also goes onto suggest that women find it a big stress and an unnecessary anxiety. In response a few pointers for men such as, employees giving them more time at home, not taking work home, spending valuable time with the family etc and making things within the household more equal.


Women really ARE better at multi-tasking then men… and working mothers spend almost half their day doing two things at once

  • Working women multi-task for more than 40 per cent of their waking time
  • mothers spend 48.3 hours a week multi-tasking – compared with 38.9 hours for fathers.
  • mothers find multi-tasking a ‘negative’ experience which creates stress and anxiety.

‘Gender differences in multitasking are not only a matter of quantity but, more importantly, quality. Our findings provide support for the popular notion that women are the ultimate multi-taskers and suggest that the emotional experience of multitasking is very different for mothers and fathers.’

Shira Offer, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Bar-Ilan University in Israel


‘This suggests that working mothers are doing two activities at once more than two-fifths of the time they are awake, while working fathers are multitasking more than a third of their waking hours.’

Co-author Barbara Schneider, sociology professor at Michigan State University

  • the difference in the way multitasking makes working mothers and fathers feel is related to the types of activities they perform.

‘Fathers, by contrast, tend to engage in other types of activities when they multi-task at home, such as talking to a third person or engaging in self-care. These are less burdensome experiences.’

  • However, Prof Offer said working fathers don’t typically face these types of pressures. She said: ‘Although they are also expected to be involved in their children’s lives and do household chores, fathers are still considered to be the family’s major provider.
  • ‘As a result, fathers face less normative pressures and are under less scrutiny when they perform and multi-task at home and in public.’

‘I think that in order to reduce mothers’ likelihood of multitasking and to make their experience of multitasking less negative, fathers’ share of housework and childcare has to further increase. Policymakers and employers should think about how to alter current workplace cultures, which constitute serious obstacles when it comes to getting fathers more involved in their families and homes. For example, I think that fathers should have more opportunities to leave work early or start work late, so they can participate in important family routines; to take time off for family events; and to limit the amount of work they bring home, so they can pay undivided attention to their children and spouse during the evening hours and on weekends. The goal is to initiate a process that will alter fathers’ personal preferences and priorities and eventually lead to more egalitarian norms regarding mothers’ and fathers’ parenting roles.’

Prof Offer


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: