Delve: Why the Job You Apply For May Not Be the Job You Get

Published: 1 December 2022

When most people apply for jobs, they expect the job description to match the job that will be filled. But between the interview and the actual hiring, job duties sometimes evolve. At a time when many people are making career changes and employers are facing uncertainties and struggling to find employees, understanding why jobs change is crucial.

In their recent study on startup hiring, Desautels Professor Lisa Cohen and co-author Sara Mahabadi found that when the job someone applies for doesn’t end up being the same job they are hired for, the consequences can be mixed for both job hunters and workplaces.

“Changes in job descriptions can allow organizations to adapt to a variety of situations by developing structures and strategies that fit the circumstances,” write Cohen and Mahabadi. “However, we observed that most of the other types of job changes in our study resulted in negative consequences, like job instability, protracted conflict over job territory and the exit of the incumbent and dissolution of the job.”

Read the article by Lisa Cohen and Sara Mahabadi in Delve.

Delve - Thought leadership from McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management

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Founded in 2019, Delve is the official thought leadership publication of McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management. Under the direction of Professor Saku Mantere, inaugural Editor-in-Chief, Delve features the latest in management thinking that stretches perspectives, sparks new ideas, and brings clarity to decision-makers at all levels and across sectors.

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