An investigation of ingratiation as a career management strategy: evidence from Singapore.

Samuel Aryee, Y.A. Debrah, Y.W. Chay

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In spite of the recognition that career politics, and therefore ingratiation, is widely used to manage careers, there is a dearth of empirical studies on ingratiation as a career management strategy. Consistent with Ferris and Kacmar's (1988) suggestion, the study reported here investigated the conditions (defined by situational variables, career concerns and personality variables) under which ingratiation is used as a career management strategy. Data were obtained through a structured questionnaire from professional employees (N = 214) in public and private sector organizations in Singapore. Factor analysis of the 21-item career concerns scale revealed four solutions representing internal and external career concerns. The results of the hierarchical regression revealed that situational variables explained most of the variance in ingratiation, followed by career concerns and personality variables. Among the individual variables, task ambiguity, supervisor reward power, managerial responsibility and need for achievement were significant while personal success approached significance. Internal career concern of autonomy development was unrelated to ingratiation. Of the interaction terms, only supervisor reward power and Machiavellianism approached significance. Directions for future studies are suggested.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)191-212
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal of Human Resource Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1993


  • career development
  • promotions
  • management
  • vocational guidance
  • personnel management
  • strategic planning
  • professional employees
  • employees
  • occupations
  • work values
  • factor analysis

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