Wednesday, 19 December 2012

The effects of objective career success on subsequent subjective career success

an article by Stephen A. Stumpf and Walter G. Tymon Jr. (Villanova University, USA) published in Journal of Vocational Behavior Volume 81 Issue 3 (December 2012)


We use a sample of working adults (N = 638) to explore the effects of past objective career success (mobility, promotions, and salary change) on current subjective success (human capital assessments by one’s managers, core self evaluations, satisfaction with one’s career) by gender, across an economic cycle (2004–2011), controlling for career stage.

Results support a strong influence of past promotions, and less so for salary changes, on subjective career success. These effects were stronger for men and during the economic contraction, with managers being affected in their assessments based on the employees’ past promotions. In contrast, past job mobility did not relate to subjective career success for either gender in periods of economic expansion or contraction.

Evidence for an interactive perspective of career success whereby past objective success affects current subjective success is presented, as well as potential implications of the findings.


► Past promotions strongly influence managerial assessments of human capital and core self evaluations.
► Past promotions influence a person's satisfaction with his/her career.
► Past salary increases influence managerial assessments of human capital.
► Past job mobility did not influence one's subjective assessments of his/her career success.
► Some effects of the economic cycle and of past success were stronger for men than for women.

Figures and tables from this article

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