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For most people philosophy and management make an unlikely couple. Yet, as this brilliant book shows, this couldn’t be more wrong: if the beginning of philosophy is wonder, the authors reflectively probe into their managerial experience, disclose their taken-for granted theories of practice and get a more lucid grasp of their own activities, prompted especially by moments of disruption and anomalies.

Coming Face to Face with your own practice is an emerging approach to management and professional research that has a significant impact on management practice. It closes the gap between theory and practice. An existential form of research means that the researcher carefully attends to their experience of researching and managing.

This book demonstrates that by bringing an existential sensibility to research, unexpected possibilities for research and for professionality, are revealed. Each chapter shows authors grappling with the constraints of a system, navigating issues of humanness, questioning themselves, unfolding their understanding of appropriate ethics and finally, elucidating a depth of response that in itself reveals a way forward.

In Face to Face with Practice, authors demonstrate how they drew on moments of estrangement from their practices. They found that when such moments are respected and carefully examined, a kind of clarification and at the same time often deep disillusionment with the taken-for-granted conventions of their practice, emerge. Through exploring these conventional ways of operating, authors develop new and original accounts of what it means to manage better in their particular field of practice. Such an approach is called hermeneutic existential phenomenology, affectionately known as HEP.

Face to Face is about making a difference: a difference to the ways that management is practiced; a difference to the experience of the manager; and actually a difference towards a more humane and thoughtful approach to managing our society today.

Dr Claire Jankelson, Honorary Associate at Macquarie Graduate School of Management, Sydney, brings an enlivened engagement to teaching and researching that aims to develop leadership capacity in the learner. Further to her current practice as independent mentor and supervisor to PhD’s, she is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Spirituality, Leadership and Management (JSLaM), a professional scholarly Journal that probes meaning and humanness within management practice.

Dr Steven Segal is a Senior lecturer in Management at the Macquarie Graduate School of Management. Through his range of teaching, research and publications he creates the space for students, researchers and practicing managers to develop their own theories of practice as a basis for developing practical wisdom and making a contribution to knowledge. Creating unexpected futures through research and teaching underpins his educational process.

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