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Montag, 31.01.2022

Ortlieb, R. & Ressi, E. (2022). From refugee to manager? Organisational socialisation practices, refugees’ experiences and polyrhythmic socialisation. European Management Review, 19: 185-206


Labour market integration of refugees is a challenge to which employers can make a major contribution. This study examines how organisational socialization practices tailored to the needs of refugees shape the refugees’ socialisation and development. We draw on a longitudinal case study focused on refugees doing apprenticeships in a supermarket chain in Austria. We show how a set of organisational practices benefit the refugees. However, these practices, along with other factors inside and outside the workplace, also complicate the refugees’ progress because they create tensions related to time. We identify three temporal tensions and propose the concept of ‘polyrhythmic socialisation’ to theorise about the specific shape of these tensions, their causes and consequences. We formulate recommendations for practitioners and avenues for future research.


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