turning points1 - Western Journal of Speech Communication...

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Western Journal of Speech Communication, 53 (Summer 1989), 273-293 Socialization Turning Points: An Examination of Change in Organizational Iden t if ica t ion CONNIE BULLIS and BETSY WACKERNAGEL BACH This report identifies a gap between theory and research which plagues two areas of organizational inquiry, describes a method through which these concerns may be addressed, and describes a study which employed this method. Specifically, recent conceptualizations of organizational socialization and organizational identification view individuals as ac- tive participants in their relationships with organizations. Yet, research in both areas has over-emphasized the organization's perspective and under-emphasized the individual's. Turning point analysis is a method through which researchers may "listen" to participants' points of view. It was used in a study reported here in order to help round out the rele- vant bodies of research. Retrospective interviewing was used to reconstruct the history and process of individuals' socialization experiences over an eight-month period. Fifteen types of turning points were identified. The results derived from turning point analysis are compared with conceptualizations of socialization and identification. Similarities and differences are noted, and implications are discussed.' p E C E NT RESEARCH HAS EXAMINED a wide variety of topics in the study 1988; Feldman, 1988; Jablin, 1987; Kreps, 1983; Reichers, 1987; Stohl, 1986). Yet in elaborating the development of relationships between in- dividuals and organizations, one fundamental dimension along which the process takes place, identification (Burke, 1950; Tompkins, Fisher, Infante & Tompkins, 1975; been ignored. In this report, we explain the need to study identification
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274 Western Journal of Speech Communication participation by organizational newcomers. Historically, organizational socialization s cho l a r sh ip su f
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turning points1 - Western Journal of Speech Communication...

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