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Career adaptability as a strategic competence for career development: An exploratory study of its key predictors

Federica Bocciardi (Universita degli Studi di Verona, Verona, Italy)
Andrea Caputo (Department of Dynamic and Clinical Psychology, Universita degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza, Rome, Italy)
Chiara Fregonese (Clinical and Dynamic Psychology Department, Universita degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza, Rome, Italy)
Viviana Langher (Dynamic and Clinical Psychology Department, Universita degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza, Rome, Italy)
Riccardo Sartori (Department of Philosophy, Education, Psychology, University of Verona, Verona, Italy)

European Journal of Training and Development

ISSN: 2046-9012

Article publication date: 3 January 2017

4996

Abstract

Purpose

In the current labour market, the competence to adapt is becoming significantly relevant for career development and career success. The construct of career adaptability, i.e. the capability to adapt to changing career-related circumstances and predict advancement in career development, seems to provide a fruitful scientific base for successful career intervention. The purpose of the study is exploratory, with the aim of providing new findings about the key predictors of this meta-competence that are relevant for career development.

Design/methodology/approach

Through a web-based survey, a convenience sample of 230 working participants completed an online questionnaire, including socio-demographic characteristics (age, gender, education), professional status (role seniority, sector of employment, professional role), professional development-related features (training, new professional assignments, financial incentives) and psychological factors (work self-efficacy, search for work self-efficacy and job satisfaction). Four-step hierarchical multiple regression analyses were conducted to understand which of these factors account for the most career adaptability variance.

Findings

Results highlight that work self-efficacy, search for work self-efficacy and education play a significant role in predicting career adaptability. Surprisingly, professional development-related features and professional status do not seem to have a relevant influence.

Practical implications

Training and career-development professionals can improve their understanding of which career-related skills and attitudes can increase one’s capability to cope with sudden changes and instability of the current labour market.

Originality/value

This study supports previous research, addressing the importance of career adaptability in times of dramatic change. It also provides some insight into the factors that could predict it.

Keywords

Citation

Bocciardi, F., Caputo, A., Fregonese, C., Langher, V. and Sartori, R. (2017), "Career adaptability as a strategic competence for career development: An exploratory study of its key predictors", European Journal of Training and Development, Vol. 41 No. 1, pp. 67-82. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJTD-07-2016-0049

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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