University of Oulu

Ahmad Arslan, Petri Ahokangas, Lauri Haapanen, Ismail Golgeci, Shlomo Y. Tarba, Ofra Bazel-Shoham, Generational differences in organizational leaders: an interpretive phenomenological analysis of work meaningfulness in the Nordic high-tech organizations, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Volume 180, 2022, 121717, ISSN 0040-1625,

Generational differences in organizational leaders : an interpretive phenomenological analysis of work meaningfulness in the Nordic high-tech organizations

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Author: Arslan, Ahmad1; Ahokangas, Petri2; Haapanen, Lauri1;
Organizations: 1Department of Marketing, Management & International Business, Oulu Business School, Oulu Business School, University of Oulu, 90014 Finland
2Martti Ahtisaari Institute, Oulu Business School, University of Oulu, Finland
3Department of Business Development and Technology, Aarhus University, Denmark
4Department of Strategy & International Business, Birmingham Business School, University of Birmingham, United Kingdom
5Fox School of Business, Temple University, USA
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2022
Publish Date: 2022-04-28


This paper analyzes the influences of generational differences in organizational leaders (founders) on work meaningfulness dynamics in the high-tech sector. Based on a novel interpretative phenomenological analysis of five Finnish case firms, we found that generational differences between leaders concerning work meaningfulness visibly existed. The differences manifested themselves in the form of different views concerning material well-being, house ownership, freedom, teamwork, and the general approach to working life (being a co-owner and being an employee). At the same time, we found that issues like job security, temporary contracts, part-time work, and gig working needed to be seen more in-depth instead of assuming their generic negative influence on well-being and work meaningfulness. Finally, the findings reveal that change is the name of the game for many millennial and post-millennial high-tech workers, and they may not necessarily associate these aspects negatively with work meaningfulness.

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Series: Technological forecasting and social change
ISSN: 0040-1625
ISSN-E: 1873-5509
ISSN-L: 0040-1625
Volume: 180
Article number: 121717
DOI: 10.1016/j.techfore.2022.121717
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 512 Business and management
Copyright information: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (