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Who am I? Opportunity, choice, socialization and transition Kate Mackenzie Davey, Birkbeck, University of London

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Presentation on theme: "Who am I? Opportunity, choice, socialization and transition Kate Mackenzie Davey, Birkbeck, University of London"— Presentation transcript:

1 Who am I? Opportunity, choice, socialization and transition Kate Mackenzie Davey, Birkbeck, University of London

2 Identity and work How did I come to be in this job? How was I socialised into this occupation? How is my work viewed by others? Where do I go from here?

3 Self concepts and occupations Vocation: Identification with a specific occupation Experience: knowledge or awareness of occupations, possibly by chance Rational decision making: awareness of possession of appropriate assets: Both developmental and differential Implement self concept Development and choice combined in career adaptability (Savickas, 2005)

4 Rational occupational choice Person-environment fit (Parsons, 1909) –People are different –Jobs are different –By studying both we can get a good match between the two Two groups of attributes –Rewards sought and satisfaction offered –Individual ability and job demands Evidence suggests better fit leads to higher well being (Tinsley, 2000) However, not all careers are equally rewarding or desirable

5 Influence of early socialization Socialised early within family –self concept, identity –expectations, feedback, support, modelling, information Opportunity structure limits occupational choice –Structural and social class influences (Roberts, 1977) Need to acknowledge both psychological, cultural and structural forces Occupation choice embedded in social context and individual identity: reinforcing

6 Joining work: Initial preparation and encounter Socialization (Willis, 1977) Contract negotiation (Herriot, 1987) Climate of mutual selling (Schein, 1978) Realistic previews (Wanous, 1977) Reality shock (Hughes, 1958) Change, contrast, surprise (Louis, 1981) Initial work socialization is influential. How far does this apply to job change?

7 Work Socialization tactics Which of these apply to Medical training? Collective or individual Formal or informal Sequential or random Fixed or variable Serial or disjunctive Investiture or divestiture

8 Institutionalised or individualised socialization? Institutionalised leads to Passive acceptance of pre-set roles Reproduces the status quo Reduces uncertainty Reduced role ambiguity Reduced role conflict Lower intention to quit Increased fit to job and organization Increased job satisfaction, commitment, performance Custodial approach to role Reduced innovation How to maintain security and increase innovation? (Jones, 1986, Saks et al 2007)

9 Psychological contract an employees subjective understanding of promissory-based reciprocal exchanges between him and herself and the organization (Conway & Briner, 2005, p.35) Negotiations of development in exchange for capability, loyalty and flexibility (Rousseau, 1995; Herriot & Pemberton, 1996)

10 Types of contract Relational Transactional Hybrid or balanced: (Dabos & Rousseau, 2004) Idiosyncratic (I-deals) (Greenberg, Roberge, Ho & Rousseau, 2004) Issues of fulfillment, breach and violation Tendency for employers to offer transaction and expect relational (Ho, Ang & Straub, 2003)

11 Desirable aspects of work environments Environmental clarity and feedback Variety Level of pay Job security Externally generated goals Interpersonal contact Opportunity for skill use Opportunity for control Valued social position How does being a doctor score here? Relative to what?

12 Career anchors (Schein, 1978) Self perceived –Talents and abilities –Motives and needs –Attitudes and values Developed through early interactions in work Constrain career decisions Technical-functional competence, Managerial competence Autonomy/independence Security/stability Entrepreneurial creativity Service/dedication Pure challenge Lifestyle

13 Continuity and change Focus on stability and continuity Links to maintaining identity and stable self concept (Sugarman, 2001) External continuity: familiar environment, activity, people. Pressure to maintain career and construct cv accordingly Internal continuity: maintenance of sense of identity: our awareness of consistent structure of ideas, temperament, affect, experiences, preferences, dispositions, skills (Atchley,1989) Career embeddedness (Cooper & Mackenzie Davey, 2011) Change seen as Positive development or growth Response to changing context in line with capacity to cope (Atchley,1989) or as threatening Emplotment (Cochran, 1997) a comforting story we tell ourselves Nicholson & West (1988)

14 Career wellbeing Career mobility but not job loss, poor adjustment Relationships: feedback, support, recognition Autonomy and power Effective performance and challenge, not boredom Sense of purpose Developing or prospect of new skills Work life issues (see Gibson & Borges 2009; Hoff et al 2002,on physicians) Career success Subjective and objective (Ng, Eby et al, 2005) How does your job score? Why change?

15 Changes Ambition, need for achievement or challenge Individual growth and development (or avoiding boredom, plateau) Social timetable: Convention of career ladder Organizational or occupational change Social trends –Quality of life –Managing dual careers/caring for family –Migration –Employability

16 Development and attitudes … satisfaction with development and career management reduces turnover and promotes loyalty and commitment towards the employing organization (Arnold & Mackenzie Davey, 1999; Sturges & Guest, 2001) Zaleska & de Menezes 2007:1007 Organizational commitment: Job challenge, self motivation, internal training, coaching not secondments and external training? but changing over time Dissatisfaction: Job insecurity lack of career prospects Organizations not offering cross functional, inter-organizational opportunities or employability Job challenge

17 Changes in organizations, in careers and in public policy Delayering –downsizing Devolution- decentralizing Outsourcing Competencies Diversity Psychological contracts Multiskilling and flexibility Boundaryless- new boundaries Unemployment, education, legislation…

18 Boundaryless careers A range of possible forms that defies traditional employment assumptions (Arthur & Rousseau, 1996:3) –Portable skills and marketability –Job rotation, networking –Self management, entrepreneurial –Developmental not vertical –Mobile, flexible –Shift in commitment? (Sparrow, 1996; Hechsler) –Involuntary –New boundaries? (King et al)

19 Work role transitions Any move into and/or out of a job, any move between jobs, or any major alteration in the content of work duties and activities (Nicholson & West, 1988)

20 Transition stages Hayes et al 1976 Immobilisation Minimization Depression Letting go Testing Searching Internalization This is based on studies of bereavement. Is it appropriate for all work transitions?

21 Transition cycle (Nicholson 1987) Encounter II Sense making copying Adjustment III Personal change Role innovation relationships Stabilisation IV Commitment effectiveness Preparation (I&V) Expectation, desire

22 Transition cycle Nicholson 1987 Preparation –Self appraisal, make contact, Realistic preview –Problem: unrealistic expectations, fear Encounter: –Coping, sensemaking, –Problems: shock, regret, rejection Adjustment: –personal change, role innovation, developing relationships –Problem: misfit Stabilization: –Commitment, effectiveness –Boredom, stagnation, plateau

23 Identity transitions Maintaining stability while negotiating change. –From a to A –from A to B –From A to z –From A to Ab –Or even from A to a Risks of changes from –Role ambiguity –Role overload –Role conflict

24 Your transitions Identify the key transitions you have experienced. To what extent –Did you change the tasks? –Did you change the role? –Did you change or develop? Identify transitions you are likely to encounter in your future careers. –What challenges do you anticipate? –What support is available From the organization Elsewhere

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