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Appears in Collections:Management, Work and Organisation Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: The Decline of Cooling Out Applicant Failure: Some Adaptations to Organizational Changes by Self-Regulating Groups
Author(s): Hallier, Jerry
James, Philip
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Keywords: Air transport
Autonomous work groups
Employee relations
Group dynamics
Organizational change
Issue Date: Jan-2000
Date Deposited: 8-Apr-2013
Citation: Hallier J & James P (2000) The Decline of Cooling Out Applicant Failure: Some Adaptations to Organizational Changes by Self-Regulating Groups. Employee Relations, 22 (1), pp. 13-37.
Abstract: Goffman's concept of cooling out the mark (Goffman, E., "On cooling the mark out: some aspects of adaptation and failure", Psychiatry: Journal of the Study of Interpersonal Relations, Vol. 15 No. 4, 1952, pp. 451-63) is proposed as helpful for understanding self-regulating groups' attempts to pacify transferring colleagues who are facing admission failures. A longitudinal study of an air traffic control company is used to examine what happens to the status and operation of a long-standing group-regulated cooling out process when the rejection of applicant colleagues suddenly increases following the onset of mass job moves. Groups saw the tradition of using cooling out to obscure trainee complaints about admission decisions as less important than publicising failure by pressing management to address their new staffing problems. The pressures surrounding the decline of cooling out were also found to weaken the common basis of these groups' established occupational identity. Specialized occupational and group constructions emerged that linked identity and task on the basis of unit location, specialist operational skills, and even desirable age profiles. The conclusion drawn is that while the very act of turning away from the cooling out tradition may undermine the process of self-regulation, it may, paradoxically, represent a necessary step in the transformation of the group from one type of self-regulated identity to another.
DOI Link: 10.1108/01425450010310789
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