I have had multiple sales/management positions in the past where it is absolutely essential to be part of the in-group which by working hard, and earning confidence from your leaders earns rewards (Pennsylvania State University, 2012). Rewards in the form of perks, benefits, raises, and status promotions are the goal of taking on extra roles that are outside of the realm of the job description which is a great way to get a leg up with many companies (Pennsylvania State University, 2012). Large organizations usually have a structure that allows for this type of environment, and upper level leaders are normally a product of the in-group (Pennsylvania State University, 2012).
Understanding the natural progression of a companies corporate hierarchy can provide a person with goals that will eventually equate to achievements within the company. For example, trying to be early every day, being cognizant of the way you are acting around your peers, and staying compliant within the ramifications of the corporate policies can help a person gain access to the in-group (Pennsylvania State University, 2012). Upon entry the extra responsibilities, heightened tasks, and a broader understanding of various business aspects can lead to the ultimate goal of promotion (Pennsylvania State University, 2012). It all seems to start out with a fundamental relationship that can lead to a bigger and brighter future for a follower (Northouse, 2013).
Currently, I am working as a contractor and the culture is a little different than any other position that I have had in the fact that there is no commitment from my employer, and no promise that if I put in extra effort I will be able to make it into the in-group. However, the goals of most contractual employees is to be hired as a direct colleague, which does happen often but with lower pay and no benefits it doesn’t lend itself to wanting to exceed all management expectations. The nature of the unemployment rate today and the reliance that many companies place within the staffing industry is leading to lower wages and underemployment for many Americans. Working as a Contractor for GE I am able to see light industrial contrractors making anywhere from ten to twenty-five dollars less than their unionized counterparts, and they perform many of the exact same tasks. I realize that tenure comes into play, but GE is stepping away from directly hiring anyone, and relying more on Adecco to find them Engineers and Technical contracted employees. Most of the time these contractors are fired after their assignment is up, and they are back to hunting the job boards for work. Its sad to see so many quality people with no place to make a lasting career.
I long for the opportunity to have a clear link to the in-group as I currently feel like I”m an outsider looking in with my current job (Pennsylvania State University, 2012). Hopefully a degree from Pennsylvania State University will help me achieve my goals of finding a desirable position that offers advancement opportunities, full benefits, and a living wage where I can kick start a retirement plan.
Northouse, P. (2013). Leadership:theory and practice . (6 ed., pp. 161-184). Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, Washington DC: Sage.
Pennsylvania State University. (2012). Lesson 8: Leader-Member Exchange Theory (LMX). Retrieved from: https://courses.worldcampus.psu.edu