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Socialization of New Members Chapter 8 (pp. 139-155)

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1 Socialization of New Members Chapter 8 (pp. 139-155)

2 Organizational Challenges We continue our investigation of organizational challenges by moving from... how to make the recruitment process more honest and realistic to... how to maintain a dedicated and loyal workforce through organizational socialization.

3 Preliminary Questions o Do new employees receive more information about the organization’s culture or initial job tasks? o What are the three “stages” of organizational assimilation? o Which is the “broader” concept, Assimilation or Socialization? o What are the two factors affecting socialization?

4 Overview o Assumptions o The Need for Information o Organizational Assimilation o Anticipatory Socialization o Organizational Encounter o Metamorphosis o Criticisms of the Assimilation Approach o Organizational Socialization o Factors Affecting Socialization: Loyalty & Congruency o Socialization Processes

5 Assumptions o Newcomers are confronted with situations characterized by uncertainty and ambiguity (e.g., job duties, formal and informal role requirements, status differences, etc.) o Socialization occurs at two levels o Organization attempts to social individual into the organizational culture and to the requirements of her position and role o Newcomer attempts to influence the organizational situation o Socialization is developmental and is relevant throughout a member’s time with an organization o Primary focus is on the efforts of organization to socialize newcomers

6 The Need for Information o More information received about initial job tasks than about the organization’s culture o Top-down information contains directions about how to accomplish tasks, as well as a sense of the values and culture of the organization o Task information is specific and narrowly defined o Cultural information is vague and sometimes implied o Values, principles, environment, o Value of collaborative work vs. individual effort o Information is often incomplete, distorted, and substitutions are often made

7 The Need for Information o One of the major functions of communication is to reduce uncertainty o Karl Weick’s (1979) “Theory of Organizing” o Information Systems Approach to Organizations o Focuses on the process of organizing rather than the structure of organizations o Organizing is equated with information processing o Describes how people make sense out of confusing verbal inputs o Organizing: Making sense out of equivocal information o Uncertainty denotes a lack of information o Equivocality refers to ambiguity (too many possible meanings) o When information is equivocal, people need a context or framework to help them sort through the data o Face-to-face interaction is crucial when an organization faces equivocal information o Communication strategies help increase certainty

8 “Difference Barriers” o Race, gender, age, religion, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, and/or language creates additional barriers to successful socialization. o Blank & Slipp (2000) o “Buying In” NOT “Selling Out” o Becoming Assimilated without Giving Up your Identity o Do not violate or contradict your fundamental value system o Learn as a child, test as an adolescent, solidify as an adult o Do not perform a function or accept a position well beneath your talents o Do not accept, without question, the culture of an organization that flaunts its discrimination against or disrespect for your culture o Do not give up too much of your culture during the assimilation process

9 “Socialization Strategies & Options” o Not accepted - seek employment elsewhere o Remain in organization - dramatically change your style o Adopt totally the organization’s values and politics o Learn to adapt to the organization’s culture while maintaining your own sense of identity o Go as far as you can to fit in without giving up your core values and political views o Mutual accommodation between yourself and the organization o Traditional Organizations - precision & bureaucratic rules o Humanistic Organizations - informal conversation o Communicative Organizations - encourages specific communication behaviors to improve work relationships o Contain, cope, construct o Promote Learning

10 Organizational Assimilation o The process by which an individual becomes integrated into the culture of an organization (Jablin, 2001) o How well the new member adapts to norms of behavior and adopts new attitudes valued by the organization o Two dynamic interrelated processes o Planned as well as unintentional efforts of the organization to “socialize” employees (SOCIALIZATION) o Attempts of organizational members to “individualize” or change their roles and work environments to better satisfy their values, attitudes, and needs (INDIVIDUALIZATION) o Three Assumptions o Individuals and Organizations are ACTIVE AGENTS o Organizations are BOUNDED ENTITIES (boundary crossing) o Assimilation occurs in PHASES o Anticipatory Socialization ~ Encounter ~ Metamorphosis

11 Organizational Assimilation o Anticipatory Socialization o Newcomers form expectations regarding particular occupations and what it would be like to be a member of a particular organization o Two Forms o Vocational Anticipatory Socialization - gathered during childhood & adolescence o Organizational Anticipatory Socialization - gathered during interactions with potential employing organizations (RJPs) o Organizational Encounter (Entry Phase) o Newcomer confronts the reality of his or her organizational role o Not yet an “insider” (uncertainty vs. information seeking) o Not socialized by the organization o Not individualized role requirements - affect organizational situation o Metamorphosis o When new employees begin to change some of his behaviors and expectations in order to meet the standards of the new environment o Create an individual identity o A time of ethical dilemmas

12 Criticisms of Assimilation o Term is inappropriate and denotes “absorption into the whole.” o Does not indicate “Dual Agency” o Negative connotations o Socialization should be broader term? o Involves interaction of socialization and individualization o Stage model does not accommodate “irrelevant” workers

13 Organizational Socialization o Represents the efforts of the organization in the assimilation process o The process by which an individual acquires the social knowledge and skills necessary to assume an organizational role (Van Maanen & Schein, 1979) o The process through which newcomers become organizational members (Bullis, 1993) o Factors Affecting Socialization o LOYALTY (moral obligation to organization) o CONGRUENCY (core values of individual vs. core values of organization)

14 Socialization Processes Based on Loyalty and Congruency (Fig. 8.1, p. 149) o High Loyalty - High Congruence o MOTIVATOR o Maintenance o Low Loyalty - High Congruence o ACTIVIST o Utilitarian o High Loyalty - Low Congruence o LOYALIST o Guilt-ridden o Low Loyalty - Low Congruence o LONER o Protracted

15 Socialization Processes... o are CRITICAL to the survival of the organization. o allow new members more and more ACCESS to the internal workings of the organization o IMPACT uncertainty reduction, role ambiguity, and turnover o Effect of socialization on newcomer role response o Content - KNOWLEDGE base o Ground rules for choosing particular solutions - STRATEGIC base o Relationship of particular role to overall organizational mission - Explicit & Implicit organizational mission, purpose, or mandate o Six Oppositional Pairs of Socialization Tactics

16 Six Oppositional (custodial vs. innovative) Pairs of Socialization Tactics o Collective (common experiences) vs. Individual (relative isolation) o Formal (segregated) vs. Informal (not distinguished from other members) o Sequential (steps to be completed) vs. Random (ambiguous or constantly changing steps to target role) o Fixed (precise timetable) vs. Variable (no real cues) o Serial (experienced mentor) vs. Disjunctive (no role model) o Investiture (affirms personal characteristics) vs. Divestiture (deny and strip away personal characteristics) o BOTTOM LINE: The type of socialization processes employed will affect the response of newcomers to their roles (custodial vs. innovative)

17 Socialization Tactics and Responses o This view of socialization represents a ONE-WAY view that minimizes the interactive nature of the communication aspects of these tactics and responses. o Tactics and responses are NOT CAUSAL o Assimilation and socialization depend on adequate information being shared o Critical to maintaining a dedicated and loyal workforce

18 Summary o Assumptions o The Need for Information o Organizational Assimilation o Anticipatory Socialization o Organizational Encounter o Metamorphosis o Criticisms of the Assimilation Approach o Organizational Socialization o Factors Affecting Socialization: Loyalty & Congruency o Socialization Processes

19 Important “Take-Home” Strategies o Collect as much information (formal and informal) about the organization as possible o Managers must closely monitor new employee progress toward adopting the values of the organization (org I.D.) o Assess how much of your own culture you are being asked to set aside in order to adopt the culture to the organization o Managers need to consider each new employee and determine what approach will work best o The individual decides the degree of loyalty to give to a particular organization

20 SOCIALIZATION: o Socialization is a process by which a person learns the values, norms, and required behaviors which permit that individual to participate as a member of the organization (Van Maanen, 1975). o Socialization is characterized as a process by which new (and continuing) organizational members learn and adapt to norms, expectations, and perspectives of their organizations and its members (Jablin, 1984).

21 Socialization... o Requires active participation by organizational newcomers o Occurs in stages o Results in specific outcomes (e.g., satisfaction, commitment, identification, retention)

22 Socialization Encounter Model o Environment o Influences both newcomer and organization o Individual Profile o Interplay between individual choice, prior experiences and situational constraints o Individual Expectations o Individuals are aware of their own expectations (often inaccurate and conflicting)

23 Socialization Encounter Model o Organizational Profile o Individuals receive organizational information which are sometimes ambiguous and often broad in scope. o Organizational Expectations o Attempt to change the individual to fit the role definitions of the organization (appropriate behaviors and functions are defined). o Organizational Learning o Self-development and self-maintenance are achieved through interactions between the organization and the individual

24 Socialization Encounter Model o Metamorphosis (Change & Acquisition) o The process by which an individual [student] comes to appreciate the values, abilities, expected behaviors, and social knowledge essential for assuming an organizational role and for participating as an organizational member o The passage from newcomer to insider which occurs when they are given broad responsibilities and autonomy, entrusted with privileged information, included in informal networks, encouraged to represent the organization, and sought out for advice and counsel by others.

25 Environment Individual Expectations Individual Profile Organizational Profile Organizational Expectations Organizational Learning Environment Metamorphosis

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