Leadership and Expectation: Thomas Pynchon

Pelzer, Peter, and Case, Peter (2013) Leadership and Expectation: Thomas Pynchon. In: Gosling, Jonathan, and Villiers, Peter, (eds.) Fictional Leaders: heroes, villains and absent friends. Palgrave MacMillan, London, pp. 155-165.

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[Extract] 'What can I do? There is absolutely nothing I can change.' This kind of statement will be familiar to anyone who has worked in a complex organisation. It denotes a vague feeling of helplessness brought on by one's perceived inability to influence the organisation or pursue meaningful courses of action in the face of its anonymous 'hierarchy' and powerful bosses. However, the statement takes on a different order of salience and implication when uttered by a top manager. In a concrete case known to one of the authors, this erie de cour came from a director of what was, at the time, the second largest bank in Germany. The author was, himself, a member of the second tier of management and responsible to the executive board. Together with one colleague he was responsible for the complete back-office activities concerning transactions for securities, custody and payments. These departments had a combined workforce of about 3000 employees.

Item ID: 27652
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-1-137-27274-4
Keywords: Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow, leadership, power, literary criticism
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2013 04:38
FoR Codes: 15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1503 Business and Management > 150311 Organisational Behaviour @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9504 Religion and Ethics > 950402 Business Ethics @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970115 Expanding Knowledge in Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services @ 50%
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