• An emerging challenge: The development of entrepreneurial resilience for independent self-employment

      Evans, Vicky; Wall, Tony; University of Chester (Research in Management Learning and Education (RMLE), 2019-07-31)
      Research suggests that 9-13% (up to 71 million individuals) of the working age population in the United States and the EU-15 rely on independent work for their primary income (Manyika et al., 2016). Even more significantly, this appears to be a growing trend. In the UK, for example, the number of solo businesses with no employees increased by 77% between 2000 and 2016 (Deane, 2016). Moreover, this growth in the proportion of people who are self-employed in this way appears to be a long-term and continuing trend, rather than a cyclical phenomenon, driven by a number of factors including the emergence of online marketplaces and expectations of higher levels of autonomy in the experience of work (Manyika et al., 2016). However, these solo businesses often operate precariously, more vulnerable to changes in their environment than larger businesses. Furthermore, the self-employed independent operates in a distinctive context which presents inherent challenges: the need to fulfil diverse roles to serve a number of clients concurrently; the responsibility for all the decisions about the strategy and operation of the business; finding enough customers or work; and isolation due to a lack of work colleagues (Deane, 2016). This begs the question: how do those who choose independent self-employment develop the resilience to manage its challenges? Entrepreneurship literature highlights the importance of entrepreneurial resilience but has not addressed the context of the self-employed independent. Moreover, this literature often employs a trait-based rather than process approach in the study of resilience and as a result, does not offer many resources to support the understanding of how to develop entrepreneurial resilience (Evans & Wall, 2019 forthcoming). Initial findings suggest the need to recognise that the cumulative development of entrepreneurial resilience is not a simple by-product of experience. It seems that resilience needs to be consciously developed by the individual themselves, involving the development of a capacity for resilient sense-making in relation to their personal ability to enact entrepreneurial processes and to respond resiliently to adverse circumstances. This QIC therefore explores three questions: (1) How exactly do self-employed independents deploy their capacity for resilience in conditions of adversity? (2) how do they turn passing experiences into learning and resources so that the process of resilience encompasses the evolution of an individual’s capacity for resilience over time? and (3) how can business schools prime the learning of entrepreneurial resilience processes to equip their learners for a future that is increasingly likely to include independent self-employment? Reference List Deane, J. (2016). Self-Employment Review An independent report Self-Employment Review: An independent report. Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/529702/ind-16-2-self-employment-review.pdf Evans, V., & Wall, T. (2019 forthcoming) Entrepreneurial resilience, in Leal Filho, W. (ed) Encyclopaedia of the UN Sustainable Development Goals – Good Health & Wellbeing, Springer, Cham. Kossek, E. E., & Perrigino, M. B. (2016). Resilience: A Review Using a Grounded Integrated Occupational Approach. Academy of Management Annals, (April), 1–69. Manyika, J., Lund, S., Bughin, J., Robinson, K., Mischke, J. & Mahajan, D. (2016). Independent work: choice, necessity and the gig economy. Mckinsey Global Institute. Ungar, M. (2011). The social ecology of resilience: Addressing contextual and cultural ambiguity of a nascent construct. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 81(1), 1–17.
    • Entrepreneurial resilience

      Evans, Vicky; Wall, Tony; University of Chester (Springer, 2019-10-01)
      The vast majority of businesses in all countries - between 70% and 95% - are micro-businesses, i.e. enterprises that employ fewer than ten people (OECD, 2017). Their impact on the economies and societies in which they operate is therefore significant, collectively acting as important sources of employment, growth and innovation (ibid, 2017). However, the existence of many of these businesses is often precarious, especially in the early stages of their development. Many newly created businesses fail within the first few years of life with mortality rates ranging from around 10% (UK, USA, Sweden) to 45% (Slovak Republic) in the first year (ibid, 2017). As a result, the entrepreneurial activity to create and manage these businesses is very demanding and exposes entrepreneurs to situations which would be expected to create high levels of stress among the general population (e.g. a rapidly changing and unpredictable environment, high responsibility, high workload). The demands of business start-up and ownership could be expected to create a higher risk of mental health problems. Isolation and long working hours could contribute to an increased risk of depression. Moreover, for many entrepreneurs, their business ventures are personal passions and their self-worth and well-being can be intimately connected to the success of those ventures (Murnieks, Mosakowski and Cardon, 2014). On a practical level, the pressures are often high and can create anxiety as personal financial well-being is often directly related to the ability to close the next deal. Furthermore, Spivak, McKelvie and Haynie (2014) highlight a possible “dark side” of entrepreneurship outcomes, finding that habitual entrepreneurs can suffer from symptoms of behavioural addictions - withdrawal-engagement patterns, obsessive thoughts, and negative emotions - arising from repeated venture creation activities. However, at the same time, Baron, Franklin and Hmieleski (2016) find that entrepreneurs experience lower stress compared to other occupational groups when creating new ventures. Baron et al (2016) suggest self-selection effects as the underlying mechanism producing entrepreneurs that are above average (as a group) in their capacity to handle stress effectively, arguing that those who persist in entrepreneurship acquire this capacity, the resilience to handle the stressors and challenges of their entrepreneurial context.
    • Integrating sustainability in business schools: The possibility of harmonic response across heterogenic landscapes?

      Wall, Tony; Hindley, Ann; Mburayi, Langton; Cregan, Karen; Evans, Vicky (Research in Management Learning and Education (RMLE), 2019-07-31)
      One of the ongoing critiques of management learning and education, and higher education more broadly, relates to how it promotes ethics and responsible managers of the future (Ghoshal, 2005; Snelson-Powell et al 2016). Indeed, the United Nations’ established the Principles of Responsible Management Education initiative in 2007 to help promote and deliver the 17 Sustainable Development Goals as part of its 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. However, over a decade on, the integration of sustainability into management learning and education remains limited (Akrivou & Bradbury-Huang, 2015; Mburayi & Wall, 2018), and is beset with obstacles ranging from accreditation drivers to leadership challenges (Painter-Morland et al 2016). Adopted strategies have included the addition of sustainability content to existing modules; the creation of standalone sustainability modules; cross-curricula integration and cross-disciplinary course provision for business students, and a recommendation for a whole institution approach that develops capacities, builds connectedness and supports systematic leadership (Rusinko, 2010; Painter-Morland et al 2016). One conceptualisation of the issue posits that the organisation of the business school needs to direct and reflect sustainability values such that it inculcates sustainable behaviours across organisational units (Akrivou & Bradbury-Huang, 2015) – and as such, providing a harmony to direct and guide behaviour at the business school level. In contrast to the need for this harmonic response, there is evidence of emerging heterogenic responses across sub disciplines, for example: there seems to be comparatively little integration in the context of accounting and finance curricula or seemingly ‘bolt on’ approaches (Mburayi & Wall, 2018); tourism and events seemingly embed responsibility in the nature of place and space (Hall et al, 2015); and marketing, which is sometimes portrayed as a contributor to over-consumption, often questions its ability to market sustainability which creates its own tensions (Carrington et al 2016). Beyond this, others may purposively not engage in the education for sustainability agenda for a range of reasons including indifference, confusion, or the belief that it is not the concern of a business school (Rasche et al 2013). Therefore, this QIC aspires to examine the possibility of harmonic response across the heterogenic landscapes of business schools, with a view to exploring alternative pathways in practice and research. References Akrivou, K., & Bradbury-Huang, H. (2015). Educating integrated catalysts: Transforming business schools toward ethics and sustainability. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 14(2), 222-240. Carrington, M. J., Zwick, D., & Neville, B. (2016). The ideology of the ethical consumption gap. Marketing Theory, 16, 1, 21-38. Ghoshal, S. (2005), “Bad management theories are destroying good management practices”, Academy of Management Learning & Education, Vol. 4 No. 1, pp. 75-91. Hall, C. M., Gossling, S., & Scott, D. (Eds.). (2015). The Routledge handbook of tourism and sustainability. Routledge. Mburayi, L. & Wall, T. (2018) Sustainability in the professional accounting and finance curriculum: an exploration", Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, 8 (3), pp.291-311. Rasche, A., Gilbert, D.U. and Schedel, I. (2013), “Cross-disciplinary ethics education in MBA programs: rhetoric or reality?”, Academy of Management, Vol. 12 No. 1, pp. 71-85. Rusinko, C.A. (2010), “Integrating sustainability in management and business education”, Academy of Management Learning & Education, Vol. 9 No. 3, pp. 507-519. Snelson-Powell, A., Grosvold, J. and Millington, A. (2016), “Business school legitimacy and the challenge of sustainability: a fuzzy set analysis of institutional decoupling”, Academy of Management Learning and Education, Vol. 15 No. 4, pp. 703-723. Painter-Morland, M., Sabet, E., Molthan-Hill, P., Goworek, H. and de Leeuw, S. (2016), “Beyond the curriculum: integrating sustainability into business schools”, Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 139 No. 4, pp. 737-754.
    • Organisational resilience of business schools: exploring the possibilities of adaptation

      Cregan, Karen; Wall, Tony; Evans, Vicky; Marshall, Julie; Hindley, Ann; University of Chester (Research in Management Learning and Education, 2019-07-31)
      Organisational resilience of business schools: exploring the possibilities of adaptation The organisational landscape of business schools in some countries is in a state of fragility, plagued by an ongoing relevance critique, increasing competition from non-traditional private providers, demographics which intensify the competition for typical undergraduate students, increasing pressure for greater economic and environmental responsibility, a need to respond to technological advances, and a different political posture to the financial support of universities (Stokes et al 2018). As such, within this morphing landscape, the organisational resilience of business schools has perhaps become more pertinent in modern times than in recent history. Indeed, the UK is said to be experiencing an unprecedented market shake out of business schools with at least three facing imminent closure. Within this practice setting, organisational resilience has been conceptualised as (1) the capacity of an organisation to 'bounce back' (to survive) after an adverse or traumatic event, (2) the capacity of an organisation to adapt to circumstances and events before they are experienced as adverse, as traumatic or as a crisis, and (3) the aggregated capacities of people to absorb crises and operationally adapt to new situations (Koronis and Ponis, 2018; Evans, Cregan, & Wall, 2019 forthcoming). With this in mind, the first part of this QIC therefore explores how we might re-organise university-based business schools in ways which develop the adaptive capacities which are seemingly pertinent to contemporary circumstances. At the same time, organisational re-configurations are likely to, whether intended or unintended, shape the pedagogic practices of business schools (Akrivou & Bradbury-Huang, 2015) as well as have the potential for wider consequential tensions in a neo-liberal marketplace which emphasises individualism (Wall and Jarvis 2015). For example, a business school that develops strong employer involvement in curricula design, delivery and assessment may have a wider network of positive ties to sustain itself during difficult times, but adopting team based assessment practices (which can inculcate the wider social impact awareness of students) can create student experience challenges. So the second part of this QIC is to explore how the changes which are created for organisational resilience might shape pedagogic practices, and in turn, the possible consequences of organising in such ways. References Akrivou, K., & Bradbury-Huang, H. (2015). Educating integrated catalysts: Transforming business schools toward ethics and sustainability. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 14(2), 222-240. Evans, V., Cregan, K., & Wall, T. (2019 forthcoming) Organizational resilience, in Leal Filho, W. (ed) Encyclopedia of the UN Sustainable Development Goals – Good Health & Wellbeing, Springer, Cham Koronis, E., & Ponis, S. (2018). Better than before: the resilient organization in crisis mode. Journal of Business Strategy, 39(1), 32-42. Stokes, P., Smith, S., Wall, T., Moore, N., Rowland, C., Ward, T., & Cronshaw, S. (2018). Resilience and the (micro-)dynamics of organizational ambidexterity: Implications for strategic HRM. The International Journal of Human Resource Management, , 1-36. doi:10.1080/09585192.2018.1474939 Wall, T. & Jarvis, M. (2015). Business schools as educational provocateurs of productivity via interrelated landscapes of practice. Leadership & Policy Series. The Chartered Association of Business Schools, London.
    • Organizational Resilience and Sustainable Development

      Evans, Vicky; Cregan, Karen; Wall, Tony; University of Chester (Springer, 2019-03-08)
      Organisational resilience has been conceptualised in a variety of ways. Koronis and Ponis (2018) have articulated this as three distinct concepts: (1) the capacity of an organisation to 'bounce back' (to survive) after an adverse or traumatic event, (2) the capacity of an organisation to adapt to circumstances and events before they are experienced as adverse, as traumatic or a crisis, and (3) the aggregated capacities of people to absorb crises and operationally adapt to new situations. As yet, there is no consistently used terminology or conceptual foundations. Nevertheless, four key drivers of organisational resilience are highlighted in the literature – preparedness, responsiveness, adaptability and learning – which can be used as a starting point to identify associated interventions which may develop those drivers (Koronis and Ponis, 2018). Maturity models of organisational resilience suggest how these drivers develop progressively, interacting and reinforcing one another to the fullest extent in organisations which manage resilience holistically, achieving an “anti-fragile” stage of maturity where an organisation improves, prospers, and/or thrives in conditions of volatility, change or disruption in the wider environment (e.g. Leflar and Siegal, 2013; Ruiz and Martin et al, 2018).
    • Pedagogies for resilience in business schools: Exploring strategies and tactics

      Rowe, Lisa; Wall, Tony; Cregan, Karen; Evans, Vicky; Hindley, Ann; University of Chester (Research in Management Learning and Education (RMLE), 2019-07)
      The capacity to bounce back after challenge or disruption and positive adapt to new circumstances has recently become more pronounced because of market volatilities, technological advances at work, as well as the ubiquitous and relentless use of social media (UNESCO 2017; Stokes et al 2018). Indeed, such changes have highlighted the strategic importance – and concern for the lack of – the resilience capacities of business school graduates at all levels (Robertson et al 2015; King et al 2015). Within this context, evidence indicates how the capacities for managerial resilience can be developed through various pedagogical aspects including strategies and tactics for promoting personal flexibility, purposefulness, self-confidence, and social networks (Cooper et al 2013). However, such capacities are curbed and contained by wider forces such as the broader organisational structure and culture of the business school itself and of the graduate employer, both of which limit potential flexibility (Akrivou & Bradbury-Huang, 2015; Robertson et al, 2015; Cregan et al 2019). To add further complexity, recent research has also highlighted the contextualised nature of resilience, whereby its meaning and manifestation vary across occupational settings (Kossek & Perrigino, 2016). Within this context, therefore, a critical challenge for contemporary business school education is to develop pedagogical interventions which might generate resources for resilience which are not only relevant to be able to express and mobilise resilience in a diverse range of occupational settings, but which are also sensitive to wider influences which shape resilience (e.g. employer organisational structures). Such a challenge needs to reflect the deeply pragmatic question of how to develop or integrate a pedagogical response in a context whereby (1) that response is culturally located in a business school organisational structure and culture which might limit capacity development, and (2) the curricula may already be heavily prescribed due to accreditation requirements or is already multi-layered from other agendas such as employability, responsibility, or sustainability (Wall et al, 2017; Cregan et al, 2019). Therefore this QIC aims to explore the strategies and tactics of how to inculcate the resilience capacities of business school learners where the expression of that capacity itself may manifest differently across occupational settings and which is organisationally bound in its development. References Akrivou, K., & Bradbury-Huang, H. (2015). Educating integrated catalysts: Transforming business schools toward ethics and sustainability. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 14(2), 222-240. Cooper, C. L., Flint-Taylor, J., and Pearn, M. (2013). Building resilience for success: A resource for managers and organizations. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Cregan, K., Rowe, L., & Wall, T. (2019 forthcoming) Resilience education and training, in Leal Filho, W. (ed) Encyclopedia of the UN Sustainable Development Goals – Good Health & Wellbeing. Springer, Cham. King, D. D., Newman, A., & Luthans, F. (2015). Not if, but when we need resilience in the workplace: Workplace resilience. Journal of Organizational Behavior, n/a. Kossek, E. E., and Perrigino, M. B. (2016). Resilience: A review using a grounded integrated occupational approach. The Academy of Management Annals, 10(1), 729-797. Robertson, I. T., Cooper, C. L., Sarkar, M., and Curran, T. (2015). Resilience training in the workplace from 2003 to 2014: A systematic review. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 88(3), 533–562. Stokes, P., Smith, S., Wall, T., Moore, N., Rowland, C., Ward, T., & Cronshaw, S. (2018). Resilience and the (micro-)dynamics of organizational ambidexterity: Implications for strategic HRM. The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 1-36. UNESCO (2017). Six ways to ensure higher education leaves no one behind, Policy Paper 30. Available at: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0024/002478/247862E.pdf (Accessed 20th Nov, 2018). Wall, T., Russell, J., Moore, N. (2017) Positive emotion in workplace impact: the case of a work-based learning project utilising appreciative inquiry. Journal of Work-Applied Management, 9 (2): 129-146.
    • Playful ambiguity for adaptive capacity

      Wall, Tony; Evans, Vicky; Hindley, Ann; University of Chester
      The need for managers to develop adaptive capacities is now widely documented; it not only enables the potential for organisations to flex in relation to environmental shocks, but it can be a protective factor for stress for the manager and employees more broadly (Ogden et al, 2006; Tökkäri, 2015; Kinder et al, 2019). There are various experiential, simulation, problem based, and live-realtime educational strategies that might promote aspects of adaptive capacity (Hurst et al, 2018; Bosomworth & Gaillard 2019 – in press). For some of these, ambiguity can play a role in navigating or negotiating the task; for example, not knowing how competitors may respond to a strategic move in a simulation task, or not knowing whether or how new group members will deliver their respective tasks for a group task (Wall et al, 2019). Such ambiguities are not necessarily valued or appreciated by students given the potential impact on their individual academic achievement (Wall and Perrin, 2015). Indeed, the "serious play" concept itself is "a practice characterised by the paradox of intentionality" (Statler et al, 2011: 236). This QIC pushes the intellectual and practical ambition of how far and in what ways ambiguity can feature as an intentional instructional design principle in developing adaptive capacities. For example, whereas many educational approaches may introduce ambiguity in the process of delivering a task (the pedagogic scaffold), many approaches do not introduce it around what the task actually is. Here, 'the task as scaffold' might be replaced by 'serious play as scaffold' whereas a particular mindset or attitudinal frame provides the behavioural coordinates for engagement in educational activity (Spraggon and Bodolica, 2018). This QIC therefore aims to explore playful ambiguity for adaptive capacity, and specifically asks: How can we create the conditions to foster and maintain the paradox of serious play (such as subjectively ‘safe’ spaces), especially set against contexts where learners can be instrumental in their learning? The QIC ultimately aims to pull together examples as well as developing new ideas to be tested in practice. References Bosomworth, K. & Gaillard, E. (2019 – in press) Engaging with uncertainty and ambiguity through participatory ‘Adaptive Pathways’ approaches: scoping the literature. Environmental Research Letters. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/ab3095. Hurst D., Azevedo A., & Hawranik P. (2018) Building Adaptive Capacity in Online Graduate Management Education. In: Khare A. & Hurst D. (eds) On the Line. Springer, Cham Kinder, T., Stenvall, J., & Memon, A. (2019). Play at work, learning and innovation. Public Management Review, 21(3), 376-399. doi:10.1080/14719037.2018.1487578 Ogden, P., Minton, K. & Pain, C. (2006). Trauma and the body. New York: W.W.Norton & Company. Spraggon, M., & Bodolica, V. (2018). A practice-based framework for understanding (informal) play as practice phenomena in organizations. Journal of Management & Organization, 24(6), 846-869. doi:10.1017/jmo.2018.30 Statler, M., Heracleous, L., & Jacobs, C. D. (2011). Serious play as a practice of paradox. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 47(2), 236-256. Tökkäri, V. (2015). Organizational play: Within and beyond managing. Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal, 10(2), 86-104. doi:10.1108/QROM-11-2013-1181. Wall, T. & Perrin, D. (2015) Žižek: A Žižekian Gaze at Education, London, Springer. Wall, T., Clough, D., Österlind, E., & Hindley, A. (2019) Conjuring a ‘Spirit’ for Sustainability: A Review of the Socio-Materialist Effects of Provocative Pedagogies. In: Leal Filho W., Consorte McCrea A. (eds) Sustainability and the Humanities. Springer, Cham.
    • Revisiting impact in the context of workplace research: a review and possible directions

      Wall, Tony; Bellamy, Lawrence; Evans, Vicky; Hopkins, Sandra; University of Chester (Emerald, 2017-12-04)
      The purpose of this paper is to revisit the scholarly impact agenda in the context of work-based and workplace research, and to propose new directions for research and practice. This paper combines a contemporary literature review with case vignettes and reflections from practice to develop more nuanced understandings, and highlight future directions for making sense of impact in the context of work-based learning research approaches. This paper argues that three dimensions to making sense of impact need to be more nuanced in relation to workplace research: (1) that interactional elements of workplace research processes have the potential for discursive pathways to impact, (2) that presence (and perhaps non-action) can act as a pathway to impact, and (3) that the narrative nature of time means there is instability in making sense of impact over time. The paper proposes a number of implications for practitioner-researchers, universities/research organisations, and focus on three key areas: the amplification of research ethics in workplace research, the need for axiological shifts towards sustainability, and the need to explicate axiological orientation in research. This paper offers a contemporary review of the international impact debate in the specific context of work-based and workplace research approaches.