Social Workers Interpretation of Expectation by Those Others

Libor Musil


OBJECTIVES: The paper responds to the question of how social workers interpret the expectations of “those others” in their organizational environment. THEORETICAL BASE: The answer results from the supposition that the performance of expectations depends on the personal interpretation of expectation by those who perform it. METHODS: The answer is based on the deductive-qualitative secondary analysis of interviews with 16 respondents and a survey of 729 social workers. OUTCOMES: Social workers who were interviewed conceive the expectations of “those others” as obstacles to autonomous social work with clients or to routine services operation. They anticipate their responses to these obstacles in terms of promoting the interests of clients by affecting “those others” or adjusting clients to service operation. SOCIAL WORK IMPLICATIONS: Social workers accept that which they suppose are the implications of the expectations of “those others”. Based on this finding, the author recommends social workers to pay attention to the following questions: Do you understand your role in organizations in normative or interpretative terms? What is the impact of your role in understanding your professional autonomy in your work with your clients?


social role, interpretation, personal understanding of expectations, social workers

p. 5 - 22

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