Want To Move Up At Work? Believe In Your Company

Thursday, 30 May 2013, 13:31 Hrs
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Washington: Employees who exhibit a strong belief in the mission of their organization are more likely to increase in status and influence than their non-believing colleagues, a new study suggests.

The study by Brigham Young University in U.S. is tweaking an old adage about how to get ahead in a competitive workplace: It's not just who you know, but what you believe in.

"Many organizations today have a well-defined mission with enduring principles that matter, not only to employees, but to other stakeholders," said John Bingham, BYU professor of organizational leadership and strategy.

"It's a shift from the old paradigm. In these companies, it's less about who you know," said Bingham.

The study found those who are "true believers" of a brand's mission or cause become more influential in important company circles, while those simply focused on punching the clock become more peripheral players - regardless of formal company position or overall performance.

Bingham and his colleagues surveyed employees at organizations with mission-based cultures.

"Those who were true believers in this company's cause were considered idea leaders and influenced how other employees viewed their work. If the mission is a legitimate part of an organization’s identity, that tends to be the case," Bingham said.

Past research looking at status in a company has focused on the personal traits of individuals - height, gender, race - and structural factors, such as the formal positions one occupies.

While those factors still remain strongly influential in many organizations - especially those without well-defined missions, Bingham believes a growing number of people entering the workforce are passionate about causes and are looking for employers that both "do good and do well."

The study appears in the journal Organization Science.

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Source: PTI
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