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Career Concerns and the Acquisition of Firm-Specific Skills

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  • Sinclair-Desgagne, Bernard
  • Cadot, Olivier

Abstract

This paper studies compensation schemes that can motivate a worker to acquire nonverifiable firm-specific skills, when the acquisition process is also one of learning about managerial talent. At the beginning of the employment relationship, the worker encounters opportunities to enhance her specific human capital. Greater skills may increase the chances of being promoted; but as more opportunities are taken, more is learned about the worker's talent, and someone displaying low talent is sure not to be promoted. In this context we show that first-best firm-specific skills collection can be implemented with a scheme that combines discretionary promotions, an appropriate wage schedule and subsidies of training at the margin. ZUSAMMENFASSUNG - (Karrierepläne und der Erwerb von unternehmensspezifischen Fähigkeiten) In diesem Beitrag werden Entlohnungssysteme untersucht, die einen Beschäftigten dazu motivieren können nichtverifizierbare unternehmensspezifische Fähigkeiten zu erwerben, wenn es sich darum handelt, in diesem Prozeß auch Managementfähigkeiten zu erlernen. Zu Beginn der Beschäftigung sieht sich der Beschäftigte Möglichkeiten gegenübergestellt, sein spezifisches Humankapital zu vergrößern. Bessere Fähigkeiten können die Wahrscheinlichkeit für eine Beförderung erhöhen. Je mehr Gelegenheiten er wahrnimmt, desto besser wird auch das Talent des Beschäftigten erkannt. Bei geringem Talent wird auch deutlich, daß keine Beförderung ansteht. In diesem Zusammenhang wird gezeigt, daß der erstbeste unternehmensspezifische Fähigkeitserwerb mit einem Entlohnungsschema umgesetzt werden kann, das Beförderungen mit Ermessensspielraum bei einem angemessenem Gehalt und ein Fortbildungsförderungssystem "am Rand" verbindet.
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  • Sinclair-Desgagne, Bernard & Cadot, Olivier, 2000. "Career Concerns and the Acquisition of Firm-Specific Skills," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 204-217, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jjieco:v:14:y:2000:i:3:p:204-217
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    Cited by:

    1. Larrisa V. Shavinina, 2011. "What Do We Know About Managerial Talent? The Case-Study of Richard Branson as a Great Project Manager," RePAd Working Paper Series UQO-DSA-wp2102011, Département des sciences administratives, UQO.

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