In this chapter, we address differences between employed and self-employed finance professionals, and we do so in terms of their foci of commitment. We compare various types and degrees of work commitment of employed versus self-employed finance professionals. For both groups of knowledge workers, commitment to customers is often seen as the foremost important commitment focus, but serious research on this and related foci has hardly appeared thus far. We conducted a qualitative study using in-depth interviews with 41 financial consultants. The results show that, while employed finance professionals experience conflicts between organizational and customer commitment (e.g., selling in-house products that might not perfectly meet the customers’ needs), self-employed professionals experience a different prototypical conflict: between customer and self interests (e.g., selling products and services for which professionals themselves receive the highest commission). The findings imply that professional service organizations that sell financial services might not significantly benefit from efforts of human resource management (HRM) striving towards high organizational commitment. Future research avenues will be discussed that will help address the pros and cons of such soft-investment opportunities in the finance sector.
|Title of host publication||Talent Management of Knowledge Workers: Embracing the Non-Traditional Workforce|
|Place of Publication||London|
|Publisher||Palgrave Macmillan Ltd.|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|