Assessing the Control Literature: Looking Back and Looking Forward
Posted: 9 Mar 2020
Date Written: January 2020
This review provides a comprehensive picture of the range of control influences in organizations. We begin by describing and labeling the various types of control mechanisms and control systems examined in the literature. We then identify several issues in the control literature that are currently compromising scholars’ capacities to develop a full, complete, and comprehensive knowledge base about control dynamics. Theorists have been constrained by frameworks that present important but relatively limited pictures of how individuals experience, comprehend, address, and attend to the potentially wide array of control influences they encounter. We use these observations to propose new directions for control research that will help scholars develop richer and more complete but also more nuanced understandings of how individuals experience and engage the various forms of control they encounter in organizational life.
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