Chapter 4 describes the reception of new employees into the organisation. The new employee may cause the organisation to change, and the issue of change – concrete and symbolic – is examined in more detail seen from both the employees’ and the organisation’s point of view. The dilemma between individual and the community is highly activated. But also the dilemma between stability and change is activated since both parties are under pressure to change.

The authors argue that employment has to be based on trust, but that the job interview is a complicated situation because both parties can be tempted to paint a rosy picture of themselves. This can cause difficulties later on. The first period of employment will typically contain projective pressures both ways: the employee has high expectations of the job and the organisation has high expectations of the employee. This often leads to misunderstanding and disappointments where the unspoken, symbolic contract can be undermined.

The text is illuminated by cases.