Administrative Management Mindset – An explorative multiple case study regarding developments, characteristics, causes and effects of a complex phenomenon with particular reference to german companies.

Matthias Sure

In times of radical change and disruption mainly driven by globalization of markets and digitalization, a growing number of companies appears to be getting exposed not only to substantial challenges regarding the sustainability of their business models but also seems to be increasingly struggling with the attitude of their management being often guided by an administrative rather than an entrepreneurial mindset which may not be suitable for future market and competition requirements. In order to explore the phenomenon of an administrative management mindset in more detail, this article comprises a literature review on associated research results building a foundation for an associated explorative multi case study design including ten expert field interviews with both top management representatives (seven) and top management consultants (three) while the latter serving as a control group. The main findings of this research study indicate that a management mentality being predominantly guided by administrative tasks and requirements is mainly regarded critical by interviewed experts in particular concerning future competitiveness and sustainability of a business in general. Interview results also reveal that main categories of an administrative management mindset reflecting both causes and effects of this phenomenon embrace attitudes such as risk aversion, intransparent communication, promotion of subordinates rather than rivals, preservation of traditional rules and routines, focus on supervision and coverage along with absence of a corporate culture driven by innovative thinking.

Keywords: Administrative management mindset, management type, risk attitude, information and communication behaviour, levelling, attitude towards supervision and coverage, innovation culture

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