Exploring the organizational socialization of engineers in Taiwan

Russell Korte, Jie Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose – The purpose of this study was to better understand the more complex social, technical and personal socialization experiences of engineers when they started new jobs in Taiwan. Much of the research and practice on the socialization of newly hired employees is narrowly focused on newcomer learning. Design/methodology/approach – The study is a qualitative, case study approach designed to collect in-depth data about the socialization experiences of engineers in Taiwan. Thirteen participants reported their experiences from when they began new jobs, and the researchers collected and analyzed data from semi-structured interviews. The analysis followed qualitative analysis methods for content analysis. Findings – The findings indicated that interpersonal relationships are critical to successful socialization, and the relational structures encountered by newcomers reflect the broader culture of Confucianism and the social interactions of guanxi in the Taiwanese workplace. Three main dimensions of socialization emerged from the data referring to social, technical and personal learning experiences. Practical implications – The findings identify what is working (mentoring) and what is not working well (training). Human Resource managers and supervisors of newcomers can take actions to better manage the multiple dimensions of socialization. Originality/value – Unlike most studies of socialization in Asia, this study took an in-depth, qualitative look into the experiences of newcomers. What emerged from the analysis of the data was a framework composed of three interdependent dimensions of socialization experiences. The findings inform both managers and newly hired employees about socialization experiences and how they can be improved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-51
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Chinese Human Resource Management
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2015


  • Engineers
  • Roles
  • Socialization
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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