Career management complexities in a developing economy : an autoethnographic exposition of one inxile’s.
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This reflexive study was conceptualised from the lens of a South African whereby as a developing economy political, educational and socioeconomic strangleholds persistently impinge on individuals’ career management processes. Eventual negative consequences impact on individuals’ career successes and the country’s economic success even after the demise of apartheid. The study benefited from a hindsight perspective that rationalised a perceived gap in dominant career theories that had limited capacity to model and explain lived-career experiences within a sociocultural environment like SA. The lived-career management experiences of the researcher as the subject and thus the inxile in the autoethnographic design within the qualitative research paradigm provided the framework to investigate the stated gap from a constructivist philosophical perspective. Four broad research questions guided the study from which it was derived 23 interview sub-questions and seven focus group sub-questions. A total of 13 participants were criterion sampled to engage in conversational interviews, 11 individually, and a combined five participants for one focus group session. They comprised three family members, three recent graduates, two peers, three self-proclaimed inxiles and two additional focus group members. All played a corroborative role on idiosyncratic yet persistent complexities that constrain career management imperatives, thus rendering the study as multi-voiced in its approach. It was rationalised in the study that: SA’s current policy document does not emphasise the pivotal role of individuals in taking ownership of personal career imperatives against argued complexities, also that career education was consistently poor and perpetuated disadvantage for the majority of black learners. Through the objectives of the study it was investigated the perceived gap towards indigenous knowledge development and to evaluate changes in the country as contextual to the poor education system. All stated objectives embedded intentions to derive elements from combined lived-career experiences from which career knowledge could be enriched while also deriving insightful input to enhance career education policy reformulation. The Systems Theory Framework provided philosophical and theoretical alignment for analysis towards culturally embedded interpretations and discussions whereby the study’s rationalisations were positively supported through fully achieved objectives.