The chapter presents the development of author’s academic career through a transition journey, starting at The COBIK research centre, enrolling into doctoral studies and his subsequent appointment on a junior faculty position. The author thoroughly explains the change in roles and responsibilities that accompany this career shift. Throughout the chapter, focus has been put on key “fortunate” events thus striking how exercising the option might change our academic lives. Some of these life-changing events include meeting his future mentor spontaneously at just an ordinary book promotion, picking up the advice from his role-model prominent researcher in the field, and writing a career-changing publication. The key message is that through hard work, proactive behaviour and persistence, academics can turn the fortune into their favour and magnify the occurrence and impact of such events. Social support, international context and experience, frequently presenting at international conferences and writing as much as possible, but also personality traits are highlighted as key academic success factors.
Tomislav Hernaus and Matej Černe
This introductory chapter opens a debate about scholar(ship) at the crossroads. It conceptualizes the academic journey as seductive and risky career journey, and briefly explains the current state of academic affairs. Building the case on the academic value of sharing and collaboration, authors explain the purpose and narrative approach taken with an aim to make academic beginnings of doctoral candidates and early-career researchers somewhat easier. Instead of speaking about the average or universal scholar, editors put upfront an idea of a different scholar. They briefly describe the authorial team competencies and explain how book is organized.
Tomislav Hernaus and Matej Černe
An overview of scholarly tasks, roles and processes as well as academic responsibilities and requirements is provided, thus offering a better understanding of the meaning and contents of academic work. After describing different work orientations, three- and four-leg stool concepts of academic balance are explained (i.e. aligning teaching, research, and service requirements with personal- and development-oriented activities). Furthermore, academic work characteristics are analysed leading to different academic performance outcomes.
Matej Černe and Tomislav Hernaus
This concluding chapter summarizes key enablers as well as red threads influencing the development of the contributors’ careers and lives in the academia. Looking across the chapters in this volume one might recognize recurring patterns deterministic of careers of our contributors, who are the emergent or just-established ‘stars’ in the academic fields of management and organization. Editors emphasize that both component- and composite-analytical approaches are required to understand academic performance. They highlighted individuals’ personality, mentorship and connections, job design, organizational factors and diversity as highly relevant aspects shaping the academic behaviour of individuals. Specific suggestions are offered for emerging scholars at the beginning of their careers, providing them with key success factors, obstacles that they need to avoid along with coping mechanisms on how to overcome them, and practical avenues that they can take in developing their careers further.