Employees as translators of a management fashion

Riku Reunamäki

Tutkimustuotos: Artikkeli kirjassa/konferenssijulkaisussaConference article in proceedingsScientificvertaisarvioitu


Management fashions change and are changed as they diffuse globally and are adopted to local contexts. The creation, spread, and inter-organizational adoption stages in their lifecycles are well-theorized and studied. However, the key role of employees in implementing them has not been properly acknowledged and as a result, the intra-organizational adaptation and implementation stages of management fashions are still somewhat of a mystery. This paper presents an ethnography about the experiences of employees during an organizational implementation of the fashionable management concept of agile. Utilizing the notion of translation, I show how one team of employees engaged in pragmatic translation of agile and selectively utilized its principles to develop their work practices, whereas another team engaged in skeptical translation and subsequently rejected agile as incompatible with their work, adopting it only on a rhetorical level. I contribute to the management fashion literature by illuminating the implementation stage of the fashion lifecycle and arguing that employees are the quintessential, yet somewhat neglected, group of actors in determining the success or failure of management fashions such as agile.
OtsikkoEIBA 2022
AlaotsikkoWalking the talk? Transitioning towards a sustainable world
TilaHyväksytty/In press - 6 syysk. 2022
OKM-julkaisutyyppiA4 Artikkeli konferenssijulkaisussa


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