Learning at Transition for Novice and Experienced Staff


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A presentation I gave at the LLAKES 2012 conference at the Institute of Education, University of London on October 18, 2012.

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Learning at Transition for Novice and Experienced Staff

  1. 1. Learning at transition for new and experienced staffAnoush Margaryan (with Colin Milligan and Allison Littlejohn) Caledonian Academy, Glasgow Caledonian University
  2. 2. • Competences in defining and solving novel problems, for which no knowledge base exists• Interdisciplinarity• Understanding and using technology with focus on general principles rather than specifics• ‘Crew change’: capturing, sharing, reusing and transferring knowledge dynamically• Increased ‘time to competence’: need to bring new staff up to speed quickly• Project-based work: collaboration and teamwork, criss-crossing geographic, disciplinary and cultural boundaries
  3. 3. RQ1. What are the learning experiences of novice and experienced staff undergoing transition? RQ2. What are the organisationalsocialisation experiences of novice and experienced staff?
  4. 4. collective-individual formal-informal sequential-random fixed-variable serial-disjunctiveinvestiture-divestiture
  5. 5. initial skills and knowledge task mastery expectations role clarity Role Adjustmentprior experience work group integration motivation
  6. 6. Organisational socialisation tactics are less effective for more experienced workers
  7. 7. Semi-structured interviews (n=29): novices (≤3 y)=8 experienced (≥11 y)=12 midcareer (4-10 y)=9Inductive analysis of emergent categories
  8. 8. Experienced staff (n=12): „veterans‟ (no recent role change)=1„movers‟ (changed role within company)=8 „expert hires‟ (recruited externally)=3
  9. 9. multidisciplinary project teamsjob rotation (every 4 years for experienced staff, more frequently for novices) young professional programme (courses, coaching and mentoring, job rotation, PDP, graduate network)
  10. 10. “… you move around and you are able to define whatyou really want to do and what your gaps in areas ofdevelopment should be. So …after a year you shouldbe in a very good position to identify what you shouldbe doing from now on”. (N3).“The networking aspect is part of the whole [company]culture and it is also in my [performance review] tobuild different networks and engage with people. Ihave got a mentor and I have got involved in [mydiscipline‟s] Graduate Network.” (N1).
  11. 11. “I had done [role] and done [role], I had done literally everykind of [role] … what I needed was to move into a differentarea, you get reinvigorated because you are learningsomething new” (E12).“I moved into [this part of the company] a couple of yearsago now. It was the first time I had ever worked in [this partof the company]. There is this assumption that because youhave been in [the company] you know everything you needto know about getting a network and getting connected.Well, moving from one [part of the company] to another …is equivalent in the external world to changing company[but] the whole onboarding process of getting youconnected and getting you a network just doesn’t happen”(E12).
  12. 12. “I am trying to leverage my own knowledge andexperience regarding my [discipline] … because Ihave a large network [outside the company]. I am alsoa member of the board of [national professionalnetwork] and I share this knowledge …” (E8).“[in] my last role one of the things I did was networkacross the [domain] industry in the [my country]. I don‟tfeel that has been taken advantage of” (E10).
  13. 13. “Because I have little experience of [this discipline]within [this company] … I would look for someone whohas more experience than me. I would call him for alunch and say „okay I have this negotiation and I amthinking about doing this kind of approach, what doyou think, … Then I weigh the approach I imaginedand the approach the coach tells to me about and … Imake a hybrid from the two experiences, mine and mycoach‟s.” (E9).
  14. 14. Recognise that transition represents a periodof adjustment, and build in explicit activities (and time) for experienced newcomers to devote to managing this transition, transferring and refining their existing skills and practices to new contexts
  15. 15. The domains of workplace learning and organisational socialisation exist in relativeisolation, but the practices being investigated overlap considerably.
  16. 16. Saks, A.M., Uggerslev, K.A. and Fassina, N.E. (2007) Socialization tactics and newcomeradjustment: A meta-analytic review and test of a model. Journal of Vocational Behavior70, 413-446.Van Maanen, J. and Schein, E.H. (1979) Toward a theory of organizationalsocialization, Research in Organizational Behavior I, 209-264.Jones, G. R. (1986) Socialization tactics, self-efficacy, and newcomers‟ adjustments toorganizations. Academy of Management Journal 29, 262-279.Nicholson, N. (1984) A theory of work role transitions. Administrative Science Quarterly29, 172-191.Kammeyer-Mueller, J. and Wanberg, C.R. (2003) Unwrapping the organizational entryprocess: disentangling multiple antecedents and their pathways to adjustment. Journal ofApplied Psychology, 88 (5) 779-794.Bauer, T.N., Bodner, T., Erdogan, B., Truxillo, D.M. and Tucker, J.S. (2007) Newcomer adjustment duringorganizational socialization: a meta-analytic review of antecedents, outcomes, and methods. Journalof Applied Psychology, 92(3) 707-721 41-55.Cooper-Thomas, H., Anderson, N. and Cash, M. (2012) Investigating organizational socialization: afresh look at newcomer adjustment strategies. Personnel Review, 41(1) 41-55