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Walking around the pyramids: Managers’ shop-floor activities in Lean-inspired organizations
KTH, School of Technology and Health (STH), Health Systems Engineering, Ergonomics.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5009-5683
KTH, School of Technology and Health (STH), Health Systems Engineering, Ergonomics.
2017 (English)In: Economic and Industrial Democracy, ISSN 0143-831X, E-ISSN 1461-7099, Vol. 38, no 3, 495-512 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The approach in this article is to study leadership activities from the shop-floor workers’ perspectives during the implementation of a Lean-inspired production concept – an angle of approach that corresponds to a need for a deeper knowledge of the interactions between organizational structures and the physical work environment. The empirical findings are from a national R&D program called the Production Leap and collected through different methods: semi-structured interviews carried out at eight manufacturing companies, the open-ended part of a longitudinal survey, and participative observations. Lean leadership practices at these companies do not enable the possibilities of developing the technical systems or work relationships between the managers and the shop-floor workers. Instead, they provide the means and activities to circumvent coordination problems and create a feeling of participation. The results here indicate that leadership activities and coordination of work do not, as it is sometimes argued by the proponents of Lean, ‘turn the pyramid’ of power upside down. One reason for this is the lack of social structures in the organization.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2017. Vol. 38, no 3, 495-512 p.
Keyword [en]
Management, worker participation, working conditions, workplace development
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Research subject
Technology and Health
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-166471DOI: 10.1177/0143831X15580351ISI: 000406067000007Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85025156169OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-166471DiVA: diva2:811163
Note

QC 20150519

Available from: 2015-05-11 Created: 2015-05-11 Last updated: 2017-08-08Bibliographically approved

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Vänje, Annika

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  • apa
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  • de-DE
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Output format
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