Exploring the Impact of Role Models in Older Employees.

Document Type


Publication Date



The international trend toward organizations emphasizing adaptability and change throughout careers suggests that research should examine the development of employees into later career stages. Role models have been seen as critical to individuals’ skill and identity development, but have only been regarded as salient in early career stages and to younger individuals. In this study, we argue that older employees’ commitment to and satisfaction in their organization will be associated with their perception of available role models. As predicted, the study finds that older employees tended to identify multiple role models in their organization. Moreover, the study finds that the degree to which older employees perceive that they have role models available and perceive that these role models share similar attitudes, values, and goals is associated with commitment and satisfaction. Implications of these findings for career researchers and for managers are discussed.


Copyright 2003 Emerald

A link to full text has been provided for authorized users

Publication Title

Career Development International

Published Citation

Gibson, D. E. & Barron, L. A. 2003. “Exploring the Impact of Role Models in Older Employees.” Career Development International, Vol. 8(4), pp. 198-209. doi:10.1108/13620430310482571.



Peer Reviewed