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Author Azambuja, Ricardo ♦ Islam, Gazi
Source Hyper Articles en Ligne (HAL)
Content type Text
Publisher SAGE Publications
File Format PDF
Language English
Subject Keyword boundary objects ♦ boundary subjects ♦ Brazil ♦ ethnography ♦ experience of work ♦ politics of everyday life ♦ shs ♦ Humanities and Social Sciences/Business administration
Abstract The current paper examines the experience of middle management through the concept of boundary work, characterized as the work of negotiating between multiple roles at the interstices of organizational groups. Through an ethnographic study of a Brazilian accounting firm, we explore the ambivalent experience of boundary work as characteristic of professional middle managerial workers. Our managers described themselves as proactive and reflexive agents, on the one hand, yet also as lacking autonomy and a sense of belonging, on the other. We examine this tension as a contrast between forces of emancipation (i.e. sense of mastery, autonomy, empowerment and reflexivity) and alienation (i.e. fatigue, lack of self-determination, and detachment from their profession and coworkers). We discuss these forces and their implications for managerial work in the light that, in our findings, managers routinely shift between being agential and reflexive mediators-boundary subjects-and interfacing and coordination devices-boundary objects.
ISSN 00187267
Educational Use Research
Learning Resource Type Article
Publisher Date 2018-08-17
Journal Human Relations