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The Work of ManagersTowards a Practice Theory of Management$
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Stefan Tengblad

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199639724

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199639724.001.0001

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Managerial leadership as event-driven improvisation 1

Managerial leadership as event-driven improvisation 1

(p.47) 3 Managerial leadership as event-driven improvisation1
The Work of Managers

Ingalill Holmberg

Mats Tyrstrup

Oxford University Press

In their everyday work, what do middle managers recognize as leadership – if anything? This chapter reports on the ‘everyday leadership’ at a global Swedish telecom firm. The narratives of middle managers and project leaders are analysed by applying a structured interpretation process in workshops with these managers and leaders. The study concludes that everyday leadership focuses on facilitating work processes that are interrupted by unforeseen events in ambiguous circumstances. Such leadership, to a considerable extent, is event-driven and therefore unfolds as a reaction to urgent demands. Managers make adjustments by using spur-of-the-moment solutions and by taking temporary expedients.

Keywords:   everyday work, leadership, telecom industry, event-driven leadership, improvisation

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