Edited by Anthony J. Nyberg and Thomas P. Moliterno
Chapter 15: Agonistic relations, social capital, and (dis)complementarity in the emergence of human capital resources
Human capital complementarities in an organization are strongly influenced by the social relations among employees. We argue that the nature of these relations, both value enhancing and prohibiting, are essential elements for the emergence of human capital resources. Yet, scholarship to date has supported a prevailing assumption of social relations that recognizes only positive, productive relations that build social capital. Our work here challenges this assumption and specifies a range of social relations that includes agonistic relations – those capable of producing human capital discomplementarities – that stand in contrast to classical conceptions of social capital. Using employee mobility as an illustration, we explain how (dis)complementarities can shift with different firm and employee actions, including turnover, retention, and hiring. We conclude with a broader outline of firm-level strategies and policies that can prompt human capital (dis)complementarities in the emergence process.
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