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Article

Emma Bell and Amanda Sinclair

This paper focuses on visual representation of women leaders and how women leaders’ bodies and sexualities are rendered visible in particular ways.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper focuses on visual representation of women leaders and how women leaders’ bodies and sexualities are rendered visible in particular ways.

Design/methodology/approach

The arguments are based on a reading of the Danish television drama series, Borgen. The authors interpret the meaning of this text and consider what audiences might gain from watching it.

Findings

The analysis of Borgen highlights the role of popular culture in resisting patriarchal values and enabling women to reclaim leadership.

Originality/value

The metaphor of the spectacle enables explanation of the representation of women leaders in popular culture as passive, fetishised objects of the masculine gaze. These pervasive representational practices place considerable pressure on women leaders to manage their bodies and sexualities in particular ways. However, popular culture also provides alternative representations of women leaders as embodied and agentic. The notion of the metapicture offers a means of destabilising confining notions of female leadership within popular culture and opening up alternatives.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal, vol. 31 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

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Article

Amanda Sinclair

In Australia, interest in women in organisations has been overtaken by a focus on “managing diversity”. The first part of this paper describes this trend and the…

Abstract

In Australia, interest in women in organisations has been overtaken by a focus on “managing diversity”. The first part of this paper describes this trend and the accompanying diversity discourse before reviewing the arguments for and against subsuming women as one category within a diversity framework. The second part draws on three examples to explore how working within a managing diversity brief allows and advances analyses of gender. The paper concludes by arguing the possibilities of working critically with diversity, including being reflective about one’s purposes and using the power that diversity offers for, hopefully, transformational ends.

Details

Women in Management Review, vol. 15 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0964-9425

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Book part

Amanda Sinclair

While physical reactions and experiences are pervasive in the experiences of leaders and followers, most writing and theorising about leadership fails to register…

Abstract

While physical reactions and experiences are pervasive in the experiences of leaders and followers, most writing and theorising about leadership fails to register physicality’s significance. Consequently, this chapter relies primarily on a creative narrative, ‘The Interview’, to make visible the physicality in leadership. ‘The Interview’ records the experiences of three leaders in ConstructCo as they prepare for and reflect on the interview for a new CEO. Though fictional, the narrative interweaves real experiences from the lives of leaders with whom I have worked. The narrative form and allowing characters to speak give licence to the physical to appear and take its proper place as a crucial dimension of the leadership experience. The second half of the chapter explores the implications of the physical in leadership, beginning by mapping some of the dimensions of physicality experienced by the three characters in the narrative. The following discussion argues that those of us who research, teach and work with leaders should be open to seeing the way conventional norms mask the physical. I explore what new means and approaches are needed in research and writing to bring physicality into development work with leaders. This chapter, including the narrative and subsequent discussion, argues that being aware of physical selves, with the humanness, vulnerability and connection with others that physicality brings, offers new possibilities to our ways of being in leadership.

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The Physicality of Leadership: Gesture, Entanglement, Taboo, Possibilities
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-289-0

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Article

Amanda Sinclair and Philippa Hintz

A survey of MBA graduates of the University of Melbourne suggeststhe need to re‐examine myths about MBAs ‐ who they are, why theyundertake an MBA, what sort of careers…

Abstract

A survey of MBA graduates of the University of Melbourne suggests the need to re‐examine myths about MBAs ‐ who they are, why they undertake an MBA, what sort of careers they pursue and what capabilities they need. In improving the quality of management education, effort needs to be directed to matching programmes to a better understanding of the management school′s customers ‐existing students, the future profession, the business and wider communities – and to expanding the “management consciousness” of potential students, particularly those under‐represented in management schools such as women and ethnic minorities.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 10 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

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Abstract

Details

Writing Differently
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-337-6

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Book part

Donna Ladkin

This chapter starts from the assertion that leading is a physically demanding activity. The challenges associated with it arise from at least three sources: as a response…

Abstract

This chapter starts from the assertion that leading is a physically demanding activity. The challenges associated with it arise from at least three sources: as a response to ambiguous ‘wicked’ problems taking the lead necessitates moving into unknown situations; followers’ projections and the leader’s conscious or unconscious desire to fulfil them create psychological and emotional pressure and leaders often work in isolation. These realities of leading create physical stress that can result in disrupted sleep, digestive ailments and over-reliance on food and alcohol for short-term relief. Conscious breathing is introduced as a way of mitigating these physical effects. Such breathing can halt the vicious cycle of feeling stressed because one is breathing shallowly and breathing shallowly because of feeling stressed. Additionally, it can reduce the sense of time pressure by introducing an experience of greater spaciousness and provide a means whereby the leader can access her or his ‘best self’ in meeting the demands of the role. The ideas are illustrated through a case study of a senior executive who successfully used conscious breathing practices to transform the way in which he led his team.

Details

The Physicality of Leadership: Gesture, Entanglement, Taboo, Possibilities
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-289-0

Keywords

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Book part

Donna Ladkin and Steven S. Taylor

Although within the leadership literature there is a body of research concerning the physical attributes of leaders, close examination reveals that much of it offers a…

Abstract

Although within the leadership literature there is a body of research concerning the physical attributes of leaders, close examination reveals that much of it offers a rather surface level of analysis. A number of studies, for example, attempt to correlate leaders’ height with their success, and attempts have been made to identify a relationship between leaders’ performance and their attractiveness. In this book, a range of scholars from differing perspectives delve below the apparent level of physicality to highlight its paradoxically ‘invisible’ aspects including: the impact of gesture, the way in which the physical is intrinsically interwoven with the social and the contradictory nature of bodily taboos. The book shows how each of these aspects plays an important role in the creation and maintenance of leadership relationships.

This chapter introduces three tussles we and our authors have faced in navigating this territory. Firstly, we have worked hard to find forms of writing which ‘point towards’ the experience of physicality. Realising that written language can never ‘be’ that experience (just as Magritte demonstrates with his painting, ‘Ceci n’est pas une pipe’ that the reproduction of the pipe is not the pipe itself) we have encouraged authors to contribute first-person accounts, in-depth case studies focused on individuals and even activities which involve the reader in order to evoke a sense of the physical. Secondly, we have endeavoured to distinguish the ‘inside-out’ phenomenon of ‘embodiment’ from the ‘outside-in’ occurrence of ‘physicality’. Finally, our authors have worked to reveal the mutual entanglement of social and material worlds, such that paradoxically, the physical reveals itself to be ‘in flow’ and continually in a process of ‘becoming’. After describing how we have sought to resolve these challenges, a taster from each chapter is offered. The chapter concludes by reasserting the importance of recognising the physical nature of the connection at the heart of human relationships experienced as leadership.

Details

The Physicality of Leadership: Gesture, Entanglement, Taboo, Possibilities
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-289-0

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Article

Norma Heaton, Carol Ackah and Gavin McWhinney

Outlines the discrepancies between men and women in senior management positions. Acknowledges the recent trend of an increase in women in this area but highlights that…

Abstract

Outlines the discrepancies between men and women in senior management positions. Acknowledges the recent trend of an increase in women in this area but highlights that this is only in selected areas. Considers the place of the MBA in career advancement suggesting that mainly men’s careers benefit from this qualification. Questions whether the structure of the course favours the male gender. Shows that women’s pay is still substantially lower and looks at reasons for this difference.

Details

Equal Opportunities International, vol. 19 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0261-0159

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Abstract

Details

Grassroots Leadership and the Arts for Social Change
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-687-1

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Abstract

Details

The Physicality of Leadership: Gesture, Entanglement, Taboo, Possibilities
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-289-0

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