The multiple temporalities of changeful organizational practice

Simpson, Barbara and Sillince, John (2013) The multiple temporalities of changeful organizational practice. Academy of Management Proceedings, 2013 (1). ISSN 0065-0668 (

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The existing literature on organizational practice tends to underplay the influence of changeful agentic actions in strategic processes. Questions about how people exercise agency, and what types of actions might produce various types of result, remain significantly under-examined. Taking a discursive approach informed by Pragmatist thinking, we develop a theoretical argument that integrates managerial talk, agentic action, and temporality, and we extend this empirically by drawing on real-time talk in managers’ meetings. This paper contributes a multi-temporal perspective on organizational practice that weaves together the fleeting actions performed by managers’ talk, emergent sequences of actions, and retrospective reconstructions of the meanings of these actions.