Timing ambition: How organisational actors engage with the institutionalised norms that affect the career development of part-time workers
until further notice
SourceScandinavian Journal of Management, 32, 4, (2016), pp. 179-188, article 4
1 augustus 2016
Article / Letter to editor
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Scandinavian Journal of Management
SubjectGender and Power in Politics and Management
This paper contributes to the debate on the career development of part-time workers. First, it shows how institutionalised norms concerning working hours and ambition can be considered as temporal structures that are both dynamic and contextual, and may both hinder and enable part-time workers' career development. Second, it introduces the concept of 'timing ambition' to show how organizational actors (managers and part-time employees) actually approach these temporal structures. Based on focus-group interviews with part-time workers and supervisors in the Dutch service sector, the paper identifies four dimensions of timing ambition: timing ambition over the course of a lifetime; timing in terms of the number of weekly hours worked; timing in terms of overtime hours worked; and timing in terms of visible working hours. Although the dominant template in organisations implies that ambition is timed early in life, working full-time, devoting extra office hours and being present at work for face hours, organisational actors develop alternatives that enable career development later in life while working in large part-time jobs or comprised working weeks and devoting extra hours at home.
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