The aim of this research is to explore the identity constructions and lived experience of freelance workers. This study will obtain rich data from a wide range of freelance workers on their understanding of the primary identity challenges and benefits of this style of working, including negotiating and defining new boundaries between work and play, personal and professional identities. These ‘independent’ workers are not permanently employed by any organisation and are based from home. Therefore this study aims to identify, explore and analyse the identity work (Watson, 2008) these individuals do to create and sustain a professional identity, distinct from their personal identity, offline and as a digital online presence. This research includes an inductive design that uses snowball sampling to facilitate the volume and quality of participants. Informant interviews are the primary source of data collection, while online representations of individuals via their websites, e-mail signatures, Linked In and Facebook profiles, provide further insights. Many freelance workers experience an initial process of identity struggle (Alvesson et al, 2008) when attempting to accept their new professional role, particularly when it is enforced through redundancy or illness. Despite this possible ‘painful’ transition, the majority enjoy the newfound flexibility their role provides.
|Title of host publication||British Academy of Management|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|