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Title: Examining political will, political skill and their maturation among male and female managers
Author: Doldor, Elena
ISNI:       0000 0004 2715 507X
Awarding Body: Cranfield University
Current Institution: Cranfield University
Date of Award: 2011
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This thesis explores engagement in organizational politics among managers. There is increasing recognition that organizational politics are ubiquitous in organizational life and critically important in managerial roles. Drawing on micro perspectives in extant literature on organizational politics, this research attempts to better understand managerial engagement in politics by focusing not only on managers’ ability to engage in politics, but also on their willingness to do so. As such, the research examines what managerial political will and political skill entail, as well as how political will and skill develop. In doing so, special consideration is paid to gender, an aspect largely ignored in extant research on organizational politics. Adopting a qualitative exploratory approach, the empirical study consisted of semi-structured interviews with 38 managers (20 women and 18 men) in two global companies. The thesis makes four key theoretical contributions. First, it conceptualizes and identifies three dimensions political will, a previously neglected factor pertaining to managerial political engagement. Second, the study reconciles and refines the dimensionality of political skill, as related to existing models in field. Third, the thesis introduces a novel developmental perspective on political will and skill, proposing an initial model of political maturation. This model outlines three stages of political maturation by mapping out developmental patterns in managers’ political will and skill. The model also identifies triggers of political maturation. Finally, the thesis unpacks the role of gender in managers’ political will, skill and their maturation, demonstrating the importance of making gender visible and voiced when investigating managers’ engagement in organizational politics. In articulating these contributions, the study thoroughly accounts for the impact of organizational context on the political will, skill and maturation journey of male and female managers.
Supervisor: Vinnicombe, Susan ; Anderson, Deirdre A. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: organizational politics ; political skill ; political will ; political maturation ; development ; gender ; female managers