Phys.org: The Secrets of Embracing Change in Work and Life
Originally found at Phys.org
Likewise, George Mason University School of Business Management Professors Sarah Wittman and Kevin Rockmann believe that it is time for scholars to change the way they think about role transitions to better align their theories with our increasingly uncertain world.
Over the last few decades, management theorists have sought to understand transitions by means of attributes such as voluntariness, social desirability, and predictability—generalizable qualities that tend to encourage binary thinking with implicit value judgments attached. While such catch-all labels theoretically make it easier to compare and contrast different types of transitions, Wittman points out that at the end of the day, they may raise more questions than answers. "Attributes are not measurable, plus they're subjective for each person," she says. "Is accepting a promotion voluntary or involuntary? There are many situations in which it would really not be voluntary."
To illustrate their method in action, the paper posits a hypothetical employee named Maria who enjoys a healthy work/life balance and high productivity. Maria undergoes a role-transition as she becomes the primary caregiver for her aging father. Cataloging the attributes of her life change would hardly do justice to its magnitude. Every area of her life would be impacted, from her ability for colleagues, friends, and relatives.
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Read the original research in Academy of Management Annals.
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