Contributed Articles

Now You See It and Now You Don’t: Consequences of Veiling Relational Work

LISA KREEGER and ELIZABETH HOLLOWAY This paper offers findings from a study of relationship formation in Information Technology (I.T.) outsourcing services and explores the conditions in which relational practices are veiled by the work designs, tools, business lingo, and even media representations of Information Technology outsourcing services. Veiling describes the way the language and focus of these elements have taken over and permeated organizations to levels where the aspects of relational work are obscured. As a result, relational skills are delegitimized, work is slowed down, conflict results from incorrect assumptions, and inefficient technology is tolerated. We identify intended and unintended consequences, on individuals and organizations, of relational veiling as a strategy that emerges in response to the everyday realities of the workplace....