Managing in a material world: How middle managers orchestrate frontline responses to paradoxes

Jarryd Daymond, Eric Knight, Stefan Meisiek

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

Abstract

Middle manager interactions with frontline employees are a key nexus in strategizing and prone to paradoxical tensions that need to be managed. Based on a 34-month video ethnography, we show the material and discursive interplay involved in responding to paradoxes in-the-moment, with middle managers using material practices to elicit different types of proactive and defensive responses to paradoxical tensions. We contribute to the middle management literature by reconceptualizing their role as “material managers,” shaping how frontline employees, in particular, co-construct their response to tensions. We conclude that the use of materials gives middle managers a distinct managerial toolkit compared to top managers, which is crucial to paradox management.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAcademy of Management Proceedings
EditorsSonia Taneja
PublisherAcademy of Management
Number of pages6
Volume2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 26 Jul 2021
Event81st Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management - virtual
Duration: 29 Jul 20214 Aug 2021
https://aom.org/events/annual-meeting

Conference

Conference81st Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management
Abbreviated titleAOM Annual Meeting
Period29/07/214/08/21
Internet address

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