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Article
Publication date: 3 August 2018

Gerardo David Abreu Pederzini

Managers’ work is surrounded by complex environments, from which they need to learn, in order to understand them. However, complexity poses several challenges to managerial…

3766

Abstract

Purpose

Managers’ work is surrounded by complex environments, from which they need to learn, in order to understand them. However, complexity poses several challenges to managerial learning, for which usually management educational programs have not prepared managers. Thus, the purpose of this paper is to explore such challenges and possible ways to overcome them.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a conceptual paper that explores in depth the issue of managerial learning challenges in a complex world. Managers face these challenges during their practice, yet sometimes management education has not prepared them for this.

Findings

Three managerial learning challenges due to complexity are identified. First, through cognition and cognitive structures, managers simplify the world around them. Nevertheless, biases, inertia and inaccuracy emerge, as managers’ mental models are not truly capable of capturing complexity. Second, managers look for information to aid them in their learning processes, but the information they gather is sometimes bogus, invalid or unfounded. Third, managers could seek for support from management research to improve their learning. However, given management research intricacies, limitations and particularities, a learning challenge emerges as well, as management research has been rarely capable to capture complexity.

Originality/value

Having explored these managerial learning challenges due to complexity, this paper discusses a carefulness-based management learning ideal, which by being underpinned by the quality of carefulness and the related concepts of critical thinking, negative capability and a deep learning style, suggests a potential new way to approach management learning in light of complexity.

Details

Journal of Work-Applied Management, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2205-2062

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 April 2016

Gerardo David Abreu Pederzini

The implicit and indirect influence of classical science on strategic management has been of utmost importance in the development of the discipline. Classical science has…

2917

Abstract

Purpose

The implicit and indirect influence of classical science on strategic management has been of utmost importance in the development of the discipline. Classical science has underpinned the main and even contrasting strategic management cultures. Classical science has undoubtedly allowed strategic management to thrive. Nevertheless, important limitations, roadblocks and challenges have also been produced. This paper aims to explore the influence of classical science on the main positivist and interpretive strategic management cultures.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual review is done on the influence of classical science on positivist and interpretivist traditions in strategic management.

Findings

The benefits and shortcomings of classical science in strategic management are explored and presented. Furthermore, the convoluted implicit relationship between strategic management and science is shown to be changing but persisting, as to face some of the challenges of the classical science culture of strategic management, a complexity culture, also inspired partially on science, seems to be developing in strategic management. Complexity seems to be emerging as an alternative, which might allow strategic management to solve some of its current dilemmas and, thus, change its implicit relationship with science.

Originality/value

The paper presents a novel way to conceptualize historical cultures of strategic management via their connection with academic cultures that have historically emerged from science. Through the analysis here done, a possible candidate for a Kuhninan normal strategic management and its potential revolution will be suggested, based on the recognition of the inheritance of classical science and currently complexity theory in strategic management.

Details

Journal of Management History, vol. 22 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1348

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 August 2017

Gerardo David Abreu Pederezini

From a complexity leadership theory perspective, leadership stops being seen as residing in an individual, and come to be conceived as emergent from the myriad interactions among…

Abstract

Purpose

From a complexity leadership theory perspective, leadership stops being seen as residing in an individual, and come to be conceived as emergent from the myriad interactions among organizational members. However, in spite of this reconceptualization, organizations still have senior managers (e.g. the CEO) who are supposed to be leading, and thus, the purpose of this paper is to explore, then, who are these senior managers and what challenges emerge for them under a complexity leadership perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reviews first the literature on complexity theory and leadership, and then, conceptually develops an understanding of the challenges that senior managers might face under complexity.

Findings

The main finding and focus of the paper is that, from a complexity perspective, a paradox emerges regarding senior managers. On the one hand, senior managers might need to make sense of their limitations and the unowned essence of the processes that surround them. On the other hand, their subordinates might still insist on portraying senior managers as final causes of all success or failure.

Originality/value

This paper presents a novel way to re-conceptualize senior managers, under a complexity perspective, where they come to be perceived as trapped in a paradox of contradictory sensemaking processes: as they come to find out all that is outside of their control their subordinates insist on making them responsible for everything as if they had control.

Details

Journal of Strategy and Management, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-425X

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 9 September 2019

Anders Örtenblad

146

Abstract

Details

The Learning Organization, vol. 26 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-6474

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