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Governing through career coaching: negotiations of self-marketing
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.
2011 (English)In: Organization, ISSN 1350-5084, E-ISSN 1461-7323, Vol. 18, no 1, 65-82 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Career coaching for job seekers has become increasingly prevalent when guiding the management of the self in practices such as writing Curriculum Vitae (CV). This article explores career coaching by a Swedish white-collar union targeted at students. Through a framework of ‘governmentality in action’ (Brownlie, 2004), the article focuses on the interaction between career coaches and students and how this discursive practice is negotiated in talk. The concept of discursive positioning is used to analyse talk in interaction and the way people are positioned in discourse by their own and others’ utterances (Davies and Harré, 1990). The findings point to obstacles and ambiguities in the construction of a ‘sellable’ self. They also show that subjects actively participate in their own self-construction. Further, the category of a marketing self indicates obstacles emanating from gender and national identity in this context.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2011. Vol. 18, no 1, 65-82 p.
National Category
Media and Communications
Research subject
Media and Communication Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-10719DOI: 10.1177/1350508410375644ISI: 000287233000004Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-79951506173OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-10719DiVA: diva2:319444
Available from: 2010-05-18 Created: 2010-05-18 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. The work of job seeking: studies on career advice for white-collar workers
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The work of job seeking: studies on career advice for white-collar workers
2009 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In contemporary working life, training and guidance on how to write a curriculum vitae (CV) or succeed at an interview are fundamental features of job seeking. This kind of training and guidance, which emphasizes communicative skills and performance, entails ideals and norms in the process of becoming employed. This study focuses in particular on guidance by a Swedish white-collar union and how students at universities negotiate career advice. Central questions are: What kind of characteristics, values and moral obligations are constructed as ideals for job seekers? How is the governing of job seekers linked to the social and political context? How is governing and self-governing constructed in the interaction between career coaches and students? How is the subject position as a job seeker negotiated? These questions are explored in four separate but interrelated articles. The empirical material includes analyses of texts, fieldwork data and interviews. The theoretical framework is inspired by the Foucauldian concept of governmentality and the concept of discursive positioning.

Findings indicate that job seeking is constructed in terms of self-marketing of individuals and the moral qualities are being active and ambitious in terms of job searching as well as taking responsibility in working on and displaying one’s personality. The study also points to ambiguities in career advice and obstacles to working on the self to become “sellable”. The career discourse is interspersed with other discourses (as national identity and gender) and other subject positions in these discourses. The technology of self-esteem is a technology for mobilizing the students in this context. In terms of “self-work”, this study shows how the students and future white-collar workers negotiate and work on their self to become employable. In addition, it is argued that career advice must be understood in relation to ideals of employability, flexibility and self-help discourses.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro universitet, 2009. 61 p.
Series
Örebro Studies in Media and Communication, ISSN 1651-4785 ; 9
Keyword
job seeking, career advice, employability, governmentality
National Category
Media and Communications
Research subject
Media and Communication Studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-7977 (URN)978-91-7668-674-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2009-10-02, Hörsal F, Fakultetsgatan, Örebro, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2009-09-21 Created: 2009-09-18 Last updated: 2017-10-18Bibliographically approved

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Fogde, Marinette

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
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  • en-US
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  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
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Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
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