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Being Real or Really Being Someone Else?: Change, Managers and Emotion Work


  • Clarke, Caroline
  • Hope-Hailey, Veronica
  • Kelliher, Clare


Managers perform unseen yet significant emotion work as part of their role, particularly in a change context. The suppression or expression of emotion by managers is no accident, but influenced by the over-rational portrayal of change processes. Our study uses longitudinal data to explore the types of emotion work performed by managers within different stages of organisational change. We argue that managerial emotion work is characterised by four facets: it involves high strength relationships, is unsupported, unscripted, and unacknowledged. We argue that emotion work is an important part of managerial activity, and should be acknowledged and supported by the organisation.

Suggested Citation

  • Clarke, Caroline & Hope-Hailey, Veronica & Kelliher, Clare, 2007. "Being Real or Really Being Someone Else?: Change, Managers and Emotion Work," European Management Journal, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 92-103, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:eurman:v:25:y:2007:i:2:p:92-103

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    Cited by:

    1. Elaine O'Brien & Carol Linehan, 2014. "A Balancing Act: Emotional Challenges in the HR Role," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(8), pages 1257-1285, December.


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