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Careers within careers: Reconceptualizing the nature of career anchors and their consequences

Authors
Journal
Human Resource Management Review
1053-4822
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
6
Issue
2
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/s1053-4822(96)90014-5

Abstract

Abstract Schein's seminal work on career anchors suggests that individuals develop “careers within careers” after their true abilities, needs, and values become crystallized through a variety of real-world work experiences. Moreover, once formed, these stable career identities (or “career anchors”) have significant consequences for individuals' career satisfaction and job stability. Despite the contribution of Schein's ideas, his model of career anchors is underspecified theoretically and empirical tests have been far from conclusive. In this article, we reconceptualize the nature of career anchors, reconsider Schein's original typology of career anchors, and present a series of propositions about the factors which moderate the relationships between career anchors and career outcomes. In addition, we suggest alternative methodologies for measuring and analyzing career anchor data and explore the implications of career anchor research for managing careers in organizations.

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