A1 Journal article (refereed)
Moraalisen dilemman rakentuminen ja käsittely työyhteisön yhteistyön kehittämistä koskevassa konsultointikeskutelussa (2021)
Collaborative construction and handling of a morel dilemma in a consultation meeting concerning development of workplace collaboration

Pohjola, M., Kykyri, V.-L., Laitila, A., & Holma, J. (2021). Moraalisen dilemman rakentuminen ja käsittely työyhteisön yhteistyön kehittämistä koskevassa konsultointikeskutelussa. Psykologia, 56(1), 50-66.

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Pohjola, Mikko; Kykyri, Virpi-Liisa; Laitila, Aarno; Holma, Juha

Journal or series: Psykologia

ISSN: 0355-1067

Publication year: 2021

Volume: 56

Issue number: 1

Pages range: 50-66

Publisher: Suomen psykologinen seura

Publication country: Finland

Publication language: Finnish

Publication open access: Not open

Publication channel open access:


Organizational consultants that rely on participative and dialogical methods face situations where consultees give contradictory views on work and development needs. In these situations it may be challenging to continue the dialogue and conversation may get stuck in polarized conflict. In turn, this may make it difficult to fulfil the aim of promoting new ways of thinking. In this article, we demonstrate how discourses that construct moral orders in contradictory ways collide and promote this kind of situation in a consultation meeting. The study data comprised of an audio recording of one consultation meeting and its transcription. Data was analyzed by using concepts of moral order and discursive positioning. We make visible how discourses that the consultees relied on produced moral orders in contradictory ways, and how struggle between discourses of autonomy and relationality produced moral dilemma. We consider how the consultant treated this dilemma as a double task by inviting the consultees to continue dialogue, at the same time, protecting participants’ faces. What followed was discussion where discourses were modified and produced in new, less demanding, ways. New concepts and metaphors allowing for talk about duties for collaboration - without threating identities of the participants - were brought into the conversation By bringing the concept of moral order into the field of organizational studies, our study provides conceptual tools for consultants and other agents working with organizations to understand and to deal with conflicts of a moral nature.

Keywords: consultants; consulting; work communities; development (active); discourse; dialogicality; social interaction; conflicts (societal events); morals; social constructivism

Free keywords: morality; moral orders; discourse; positioning; process consulting

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2021

Preliminary JUFO rating: 2

Last updated on 2022-15-06 at 14:29