Identity construction within young employee networks
In the last decade, the recruitment and retainment of young employees seems to be moving up the management agenda. Young employees are valued for their skills and new insights but seem to be rewarded with temporary contracts and insecurities in their work. In the process of becoming a professional, young employees (re)construct their own identity, also referred to as identity work, and their identity construction can be influenced and regulated by organizational culture, rules and restrictions, which is referred to as identity regulation. One of the alleged contextual contributors to the construction of young employees are young employee networks, a specific form of a diversity network. The aim of this research is to contribute to the knowledge about the identity construction of young employees within young employee networks from a critical management perspective. My analysis focuses on the (power)relations generated by or through the young employee network, influencing the identity construction of young employees. From this analysis, it can be derived that in this case young employees are generally more highly valued as a collective identity than as individuals, making the young employee network functioning as a way in which young employees get valued more for their ideas. Furthermore, identity construction is regulated by board members, directors, national management, and supervisors, by controlling how and which activities take place and who takes place in the board.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen