In traditional management theory, one has a fairly clear picture of how a manager works: he or she plans with sense and understanding, coordinates and controls carefully and always has the overall objective firmly in mind. Anyone who has ever worked in a managerial position quickly realizes that this ideal is much rarer in the day-to-day life of management than classical theories suggest.
The daily routine of most managers is far less characterised by rational decisions and structured activities than by direct and indirect attempts to influence others, by political manoeuvres and the hidden or open confrontation of different interest groups. In the shadow of many management decisions, fundamental power struggles are smouldering. Often, completely different perceptions compete for dominance in the company. Their protagonists use every means at their disposal to attract influential players to their side. Not everyone openly acknowledges their goals and interests. Because in the background of many arguments it is not about the subject, but about the ranking of personal importance.
WGMB’s research work is based on this empirically shaped picture of management practice, which sees itself as a constructive complement to traditional management theory. For many years, two central topics have been the focus of our work, which we illuminate from different perspectives: Power in organizations and fads and fashions in management.
Fields of research
Power in organizations
In our research work, we explore the question of why people do what others want them to do.
Fads and fashions in management
The concept of fashion is often associated with aesthetic aspects. It stands for the beliefs and behaviour of a certain social group that are regarded as contemporary in a certain period of time …