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Research Article

The Relationship between Occupational/Supervisory Hierarchical Position and the Meaning Of Working: A Six Country Comparison

Authors:

Pol Coetsier ,

University of Ghent, BE
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William Whitely

University of Oklahoma, US; University of Ghent, BE
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Abstract

This study examines the generalizability of relationships between hierarchical position and the meaning of working (MOW) in six countries. Respondents occupying managerial, first level supervisory, or nonsupervisory worker positions were randomly sampled from national labor forces in each country. Results indicate that there are major differences in the meaning of working between managers and nor-supervisory workers in all countries supporting structural constraint theoretical explanations. Smaller MOW differences were observed between first level supervisors and either managers or non-supervisory workers which tend to support both persona) choice and structural constraint theoretical explanations. These differences between position levels provides evidence for distinct organization sub-cultures that develop because of the degree of relationship between occupational/supervisory hierarchies at work and non-organizational social hierarchies. National comparisons reveal wide differences in the degree of similarity of managers’ and supervisors’ meaning of working. The social class structure and social milieu, internal labor market practices, intensity of socialization practices and power equalization practices used in different countries may account for the particular similarity or differences of supervisors to managers or non-supervisory workers in each national setting.

How to Cite: Coetsier, P. and Whitely, W., 1995. The Relationship between Occupational/Supervisory Hierarchical Position and the Meaning Of Working: A Six Country Comparison. Psychologica Belgica, 35(1), pp.1–40. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/pb.875
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Published on 01 Jan 1995.
Peer Reviewed

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