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Title: Careers development in construction firms: Application of Sun Tzu's ITArt of War/IT principles
Authors: Ling, F.Y.Y. 
Lee, S.Y.
Keywords: Career development
Construction professionals
Human resource management
Issue Date: 2012
Citation: Ling, F.Y.Y., Lee, S.Y. (2012). Careers development in construction firms: Application of Sun Tzu's ITArt of War/IT principles. Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management 19 (2) : 173-191. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Purpose - Career development involves how employees manage their career advancement. This study aims to investigate the relevance of Sun Tzu's ITArt of War/IT to career development of construction professionals with the aim of suggesting strategies that may be adopted for career development. Design/methodology/approach - The data collection technique was in-depth interviews with 32 subjects who are Singapore-based construction professionals. The subjects were asked 13 open-ended questions which were developed based on the ITArt of War/IT. Findings - The main findings on the effective career development strategies are: outperforming peers by developing deep job experience and delivering excellent performance; adopting a team member posture before moving on to a team leader stance; handling office politics and conflicts effectively; maintaining flexibility and manoeuvrability in one's career; networking; and acquiring foreknowledge. Research limitations/implications - The study is qualitative in nature, thus, the actual effectiveness of the recommendations for career development is not known. There may also be some more strategies undisclosed by interviewees as sharing them may cause them to lose their competitive advantage. Practical implications - The effective strategies for career development are found. Construction professionals may adopt some military strategies that may help them in their career development. Social implications - The relevance of military strategies to career development in construction firms suggests that career progression is akin to war, where winning is important and strategizing to win is necessary. Originality/value - In this paper military strategies are mapped onto career development, and relevant career advancement strategies are identified. © 2012 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
Source Title: Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management
ISSN: 09699988
DOI: 10.1108/09699981211206106
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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