Chapter published in:Identity Struggles: Evidence from workplaces around the world
Edited by Dorien Van De Mieroop and Stephanie Schnurr
[Discourse Approaches to Politics, Society and Culture 69] 2017
► pp. 57–78
Juggling “I”s and “we”s with “he”s and “she”s
Negotiating novice professional identities in stories of teamwork told in New Zealand job interviews
Teamwork is perennially among graduate employers’ most wished-for competencies, and how candidates respond to teamwork questions can be pivotal to success or failure. This chapter addresses novice interviewees’ struggles to construct professional competence in line with the normative expectations of the competency framework. Drawing on a corpus of 30 graduate interviews collected in New Zealand, the analysis highlights the discursive struggle to balance individual and team identities in orienting to achievements and difficulties, explored in terms of Bamberg’s (2011) three identity dilemmas: sameness/difference, agency/control, and constancy/change. It reveals how identities are talked into being in the tension between the “we” and the “I”, in attributing blame and in acknowledging a learning outcome, which are crucial to constructing an employable identity.
Keywords: teamwork stories, identity dilemmas, professional identities, graduate employers, competency framework
Published online: 26 April 2017
Akinnaso, F. Niyi and Ajirotutu, Cheryl S.
2013 “Narrative Practices and their Analysis.” Plenary paper presented at 13th International Pragmatics Conference, New Delhi.
Campbell, Sarah, and Celia Roberts
2012 Skills Employers are Looking For. Retrieved from http://www.careers.govt.nz/plan-your-career/not-sure-what-to-do/skills-employers-are-looking-for/#cID_115
Champy, James A.
Drew, Paul and John Heritage
Erickson, Frederick, and Jeffrey Schultz
Gee, James P., Glynda, A. Hull and Colin Lankshear
He, Agnes Weiyun
Kerekes, Julie A.
McLachlan, Murray, Stewart Forsyth and Linda Cassells
Merman, Stephen K., and John E. McLaughlin
Ochs, Elinor and Lisa Capps
Rees, Claire, Forbes, Peter and Bianca Kubler
2012 “‘The guys would like to have a lady’: The co-construction of gender and professional identity in interviews between employers and female engineering students.” In The Interplay Between Professional Identities and Age, Gender and Ethnicity, ed. by Dorien Van De Mieroop and Jonathan Clifton, Special issue of Pragmatics, 22 (2): 231–254.
Roberts, Celia, and Sarah Campbell
Sarangi, Srikant, and Celia Roberts
The University of Auckland. n.d.
Graduate profiles. Retrieved from https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/about/learning-and-teaching/strategies-goals-and-plans/graduate-profiles.html
Tucker, Richard, and Neda Abbasi
Vic Careers: Career Development and Employment. n.d.
Employment Skills Survey. Victoria University Wellington. Retrieved from: http://www.victoria.ac.nz/st_services/careers/resources/employment_skills_survey.aspx
Cited by other publications
No author info given
Greenbank, Emily & Meredith Marra
This list is based on CrossRef data as of 30 december 2020. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.