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Title: Organizational paradoxes : when opposites cease to be opposites
Authors: Wright, RP 
Keywords: Organizational paradoxes
Managerial tensions
Either/or thinking
And/both thinking
Repertory grids
Constructive alternativism
Janusian thinking
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: John Wiley and Sons Ltd.
Source: In DA Winter & N Reed (Eds.), The Wiley handbook of personal construct psychology, p. 306-319. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: John Wiley and Sons Ltd., 2015 How to cite?
Abstract: As our world becomes more fast-paced, complex, ambiguous, uncertain and interconnected, multiple competing tensions and demands jockey for our attention in organizational life. How managers respond to these tensions is fundamental to an organization's fate. Psychologists have long advocated the cognitive nature of paradoxes and that they are cognitively and socially constructed. I advocate that Kelly's theory of personal constructs holds great promise in getting managers to think more deeply about how they think they construe the seemingly opposing tensions confronting their everyday strategic work. In contributing to the paradox literature, I argue that Kelly's bi-polarity of construing extends beyond (complex, not simple) “either/or” thinking to a much higher level “and/both” thinking where opposites cease to be opposites and that the poles of a construct are in fact complementarities. Using a pilot study with a senior executive, I demonstrate how a modified repertory grid technique captures paradoxical thinking.
ISBN: 9781118508275
DOI: 10.1002/9781118508275.ch25
Appears in Collections:Book Chapter

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