Chapter 9: Career Development, Progression and Trust
Jonathan R. Crawshaw* INTRODUCTION The aim of this chapter is to explore in more detail the development of careerist-orientated employees. In particular, the focus is on the roles played by trust in the employment relationship and (in)effective organizational career management (OCM), where OCM refers to the policies and practices developed by an employer to improve the career effectiveness and success of their employees (see Orpen, 1998). Careerist orientation is defined as ‘the propensity to pursue career advancement through nonperformance-based means’ (Feldman and Weitz, 1991, p. 237). Careerists believe that career advancement and progression in organizations is at best difficult, and at worst impossible, through hard work, competence and high performance alone (Feldman, 1985; Orpen, 1998). Instead, careerists view impression management, politicking, deceit and the promotion of personal interests over those of their employer as the essential strategies for individual career progression and advancement in the contemporary employment relationship (for a review, see Feldman and Weitz, 1991). Such self-serving and narcissistic (Lasch, 1979) attitudes to work and employment have been shown to hold significant implications for both employers and employees. For the employer, the individual career management and advancement strategies described above override any responsibilities and requirements the employee may have regarding his/her actual job role and position within the organization. It becomes more important to appear to be an effective high-performing employee, and to convince key organizational agents (line managers, mentors) of this, rather than actually performing consistently well in one’s job (Bolino, 1999; Chay and Aryee, 1999; Landon,...
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