Women in change management

Melissa Tyler (Organization Studies, The Business School, Loughborough University, Loughborough, Leicestershire, UK)

Journal of Organizational Change Management

ISSN: 0953-4814

Publication date: 1 December 2005



To consider Simone De Beauvoir's account of woman as Other, and particularly the appropriation of sexual difference, with reference to the gendered bifurcation and hierarchical organization of change management.


Through a review of relevant managerial texts, as well as a discussion of De Beauvoir's The Second Sex and related scholarship, the paper explores some of the ways in which men and women are “situated” within change management discourse.


Argues that within managerial discourse men are constructed as “effective” managers of change, whereas women are relegated to an “affective” support function, and that this can be understood as an appropriation of women's ascribed Otherness.


The paper contributes to the ongoing development of a critical, feminist approach to the study of management. While acknowledging the many limitations of her work, it makes the case for a reappraisal of De Beauvoir's thinking in this respect.



Tyler, M. (2005), "Women in change management", Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 18 No. 6, pp. 561-577. https://doi.org/10.1108/09534810510628503

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Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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