Mastery and slavery : triangulatory views on owner-managers' managerial works
This study explores owner-managers' managerial work. It consists of two main parts: an introduction and four published articles. Each article involves a unique research task, presenting a different triangulatory view on the focal phenomenon. The aim has been to explore what owner-managers really do and how they perceive their managerial work within an external environment. This is why the interplay between owner-managers, their firms, and external environments enacted is emphasized in each article. Owner-managers' managerial work has been neglected within inductive management research, although owner-managed firms make a significant contribution to national economies and present societies. As the present state of knowledge, as a whole, is modest and conceptualization of managerial work inadequate, new conceptual tools are needed for exploring the managerial work of owner-managers of small-to-medium sized firms. Therefore conceptual development and refinement are essential in the present thesis. In addition, since business ownership is regarded as the distinguishing feature between managers and owner-managers, the relationship between ownership and managerial work is also studied. The primary aim of this study is to further the understanding of owner-managers' managerial work. Qualitative data collected from 28 owner-managers in total by using different methods have been indispensable for this purpose. Owner-managers' subjective life worlds have enabled the researcher to increase her own understanding of the phenomenon studied. Accordingly, the changing focus of the articles reflects the particular interaction the researcher has had with the focal phenomenon at that specific point of time. This is why the research design of this study may be considered emergent. The conceptual framework proposed has been construed gradually by combining ideas from two inductive studies with those derived from various literature dealing with 'domain'. The domain framework is well-suited for exploring owner-managers' managerial work at different levels, in concrete and abstract contexts, and both as an imaginary and a linguistic representation. Moreover, this framework proves suitable for illustrating how business ownership and managerial work are related in owner-managers' perception. ...
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- Väitöskirjat