Resources and Relationships: Social Networks and Mobility in the Workplace
Posted: 13 Sep 1999
Date Written: July 1996
This paper examines how the structure and content of individuals' networks on the job affect intraorganizational mobility. Consistent with prior research, we find that mobility is enhanced by having large, dense networks of informal ties for acquiring information and resources. However, studies of networks and organizational careers have overlooked the importance of informal ties in transmitting social identity and normative expectations within organizations, which is facilitated by networks with the opposite features: smaller size and greater density. We use this argument as the basis for developing a typology of network contents, and we document this interaction between network structure and content in analyses of mobility among employees of a high technology firm. We also show how the effects of tie duration on mobility vary across types of network ties. The implications of these findings for theory and research on networks and organizational mobility are discussed.
JEL Classification: A14, J60
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation