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A falling of the veils: Turning points and momentous turning points in leadership and the creation of CSR

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Title: A falling of the veils: Turning points and momentous turning points in leadership and the creation of CSR
Authors: Hemingway, CA
Starkey, K
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: This article uses the life stories approach to leadership and leadership development. Using exploratory, qualitative data from a Forbes Global 2000 and FTSE 100 company, we discuss the role of the turning point (TP) as an important antecedent of leadership in corporate social responsibility. We argue that TPs are causally efficacious, linking them to the development of life narratives concerned with an evolving sense of personal identity. Using both a multi-disciplinary perspective and a multi-level focus on CSR leadership, we identify four narrative cases. We propose that they helped to re-define individuals’ sense of self and in some extreme cases completely transformed their self-identity as leaders of CSR. Hence, we also distinguish the momentous turning point (MTP) that created a seismic shift in personality, through re-evaluation of the individuals’ personal values. We argue that whilst TPs are developmental experiences that can produce responsible leadership, the MTP changes the individuals’ personal priorities in life to produce responsible leadership that perhaps did not exist previously. Thus, we appropriate Maslow’s (Religions, values and peak experiences, Penguin, New York, 1976, p 77) metaphorical phrase ‘A falling of the veils’ from his discussion of peak and desolation experiences that produce personal growth. Using a multi-disciplinary literature from social theory (Archer in The reflexive imperative in late modernity, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2012) moral psychology (Narvaez, in: Narvaez, Lapsley (eds) Personality, identity and character: explorations in moral psychology, Cambridge University Press, New York, 2009) and social psychology (Schwartz, in: Mikulincer, Shaver (eds) Prosocial motives, emotions, and behaviour: the better angels of our nature, American Psychological Association, Washington, 2010), we present a theoretical model that illustrates the psychological process of the (M)TP, thus contributing to the growing literature on the microfoundations of CSR.
Issue Date: 1-Sep-2018
Date of Acceptance: 24-Jul-2017
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/73449
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-017-3659-3
ISSN: 0167-4544
Publisher: Springer
Start Page: 875
End Page: 890
Journal / Book Title: Journal of Business Ethics
Volume: 151
Issue: 4
Copyright Statement: © 2017 The Author(s). This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://crea tivecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
Keywords: 1503 Business and Management
2201 Applied Ethics
1505 Marketing
Applied Ethics
Publication Status: Published
Online Publication Date: 2017-08-24
Appears in Collections:Imperial College Business School