New framework of moral identity: How to bring more meaning to your work?



Previous empirical studies of moral identity have mainly focused on only one way of conceptualizing and measuring moral identity: the two-dimensional (internalization and symbolization) moral identity model. However, we have a rather limited understanding about the processes through which individuals can attain a strong and mature moral identity. In the first part of my talk, I will present a new integrative framework that applies Marcia’s seminal model of identity statuses into the moral domain at work. I will show how the framework enables to identify different styles that leaders use in their work contexts to deal with moral conflicts; an identification of such styles may hold important implications for professional development and supporting moral behaviors within organizations. In the second part of my presentation, I will introduce potential ideas for developing moral identity of leaders and employees, which will help people to find more meaning in their work. Here, the key aims are (1) to develop a measure for identifying personal moral identity status and (2) to plan interventions that match with personal stages of change.