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Unpublished Paper
Serving the client, serving the partner: The construction of embeddedness in pluralistic contexts
(2014)
  • Roxana Barbulescu, McGill University
  • Charles Galunic
  • Ben Bensaou
  • Claudia D. Jonczyk
Abstract
This study investigates the micro-level practices by which social embeddedness is constructed in a pluralistic context where organizational actors face multiple paths for embeddedness. We look at how service professionals in law, consulting and audit firms create emdedded relationships with two main stakeholders, partners and clients. Our analysis describes these micro-practices and finds similarities for embeddedness practices aimed at developing trust in the actor as person while embeddedness practices aimed at developing trust in the actor as representative of the profession are tailored to the specific particularities of the type of relationship. Our results also offer insights into some of the underlying forces and contingency factors at play for the preferences of those different paths. Findings demonstrate how individuals’ future professional identity concerns inform the relational work they engage in. Embeddedness processes are hence themselves embedded in a context which constitutes a powerful force to shape individual interactions and explains the emphasis on either partner or client relations.
Keywords
  • Embeddedness of economic exchange,
  • careers,
  • professional service firms
Publication Date
2014
Citation Information
Roxana Barbulescu, Charles Galunic, Ben Bensaou and Claudia D. Jonczyk. "Serving the client, serving the partner: The construction of embeddedness in pluralistic contexts" (2014)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/roxana_barbulescu/7/