Person-centrism in psychological contract research: A normative-contextual alternative

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Abstract

The current state of the psychological contract literature emphasizes processes of personal exchange at the individual level of analysis, thus offering an undersocialized picture. In redressing this problem, I offer an alternative by exploring how psychological contracting may look like if viewed as a socially situated process. I do this by examining person-centric and alternative “normative-contextual” assumptions in four substantive areas: level of analysis, the role of social influence, the organization as interaction partner, and the societal context. In articulating the normative-contextual perspective as an alternative in these four substantive areas, I forward a process model that shows how personal exchange is embedded in group and institutional environments within the organization and in the larger society. Finally, upon re-reading the classical works on the psychological contract and social exchange theory, I found surprisingly strong fragments in favor of the “normative-contextual” perspective.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Research on the Psychological Contract at Work
EditorsYannick Griep, Cary Cooper
Place of PublicationCheltenham, UK
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing Ltd.
Chapter11
Pages223-241
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781788115681
ISBN (Print)9781788115674
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Publication series

NameNew Horizons in Management series

Keywords

  • psychological contract
  • normative contract
  • institutional theory

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