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Enterprise Contested:Betwixt and Between the Discourses of Career and Enterprise in a UK Bank

McCabe, Darren (2009) Enterprise Contested:Betwixt and Between the Discourses of Career and Enterprise in a UK Bank. Human Relations, 62 (10). pp. 1551-1579. ISSN 0018-7267

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Abstract

This article analyses the 'enterprise discourse' (Miller and Rose,1990; Rose,1989) that endeavours to reinvent employees as responsible, autonomous, self-regulating, customer-focused, team players. In this study of a major UK Bank, the staff both endorsed and turned the enterprise discourse back on management and so the boundaries between dissent and consent are blurred. The case study highlights that enterprise does not arrive fully formed and can be a weapon of employees rather than simply a tool of those who seek to exercise power. It is argued that whilst enterprise is a contemporary discourse, it reproduces aspects of a much older 'career' (McKinlay,2002; Tempest et al,2004) discourse in UK financial services. The continuity and discontinuity between the two discourses fuelled resistance, whilst oiling and obscuring, the reproduction of enduring inequalities, that straddle both discourses.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Human Relations
Uncontrolled Keywords: customer service ; discourse ; enterprise ; financial services ; power ; qualitative
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
Departments: Lancaster University Management School > Organisation, Work & Technology
ID Code: 55640
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 10 Jul 2012 11:18
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2013 15:51
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/55640

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