A Configurational Approach to Identification and Employee Retention after an Acquisition Event
2017 (English)Conference paper (Refereed)
Retaining employees is a critical predictor of success or failure in many post-acquisition integration projects. Social identification strongly affects employees’ intentions to remain with or leave a firm after an acquisition. In the last years, a strong understanding developed that specifically identification with the organization affects an employee’s intention to leave or to stay within the new organization. This article suggests that organizational identification alone is not sufficient to bring employees to stay. We employ a social identity perspective to exploratively study combinations of conditions that need to be in place alongside organizational identification for employees to develop a strong intention to leave or to stay after an acquisition. Building on a mixed method approach combining fuzzy-set methodology (fsQCA) with qualitative data, our analysis shows a nuanced picture of how multi-focus identification patterns influence employee retention. The paper highlights the configurations of conditions that need to be present for identification to transfer into behavior and shows that the combinations that lead to strong commitment to stay are substantially different from those that lead to strong intention to leave. Based on these insights, we advance theory on contingency conditions for the identification-retention relationship from a social identity perspective.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Identification, Post-acquisition integration, Professions, Social identity theory, mixed-method, fsQCA
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-35306OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-35306DiVA: diva2:1086765
77th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, Atlanta, August 4-8, 2017.
AOM 2017 Theme: At the Interface2017-04-042017-04-042017-04-04