A sensemaking perspective on the psycological contract formations during organisational socialisation.
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KeywordsPsychological contractObligationsPsychological contract violationsTransactional and relational contractsSensemaking
Permissions© 2009 Magang, V. G. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share-Alike License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/uk).
InstitutionUniversity of Bradford
DepartmentSchool of Management
The main aim of this thesis is to investigate the processes of the psychological contract during organisational socialisation. Research on psychological contract tends to focus more on the content and breach of the contract. Very little is known about the formative stages of the contract. Very little attention has also been given to investigating the psychological contract together with organisational socialisation. Linking the two research areas would further our understanding of both the dynamic nature of the psychological contract. This is achieved by investigating the temporal changes of the psychological contract of new employees, pre-entry up to six months post entry into employment. The research also investigates the psychological contract from the employer`s perspective. It utilises Weick`s (1995) sensemaking properties as a methodological framework to better understand these processes. Consistent with the research aim and objectives and social constructionism, a qualitative methodology was adopted. The research used in-depth semi structured interviews to collect data supplemented with sitting in during recruitment interviews in one of the organisations, and data were analysed using template analysis. Periodic interviews were carried out every four to six months post entry. The research consists of two organisations, where each provided two groups for analysis. The findings show that after entry into the organisation, the psychological contract changes in a variety of ways influenced by socialisation into the organisation. A model based on the findings is presented and discussed in the discussion chapter. The research also makes a contribution (methodology) by adopting the sensemaking framework.