Illuminating power at the top: contributions to the understanding of top executive legitimacy

Valerie Petit, Veronique Boulocher-Passet, Eve Lamendour

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNConference contribution with ISSN or ISBN

Abstract

This article explores the following questions: what are the nature and the determinants of top executive legitimacy? What are the behaviors displayed by top executives which will increase or decrease their legitimacy in the eyes of their stakeholders? Building on the classical approach to legitimacy (Weber, 1978) as well as the recent work done on the psychology of legitimacy, this research makes two contributions: complementary to the institutional approaches to legitimacy in the fields of strategic management (Suchman, 1995) and ethics (Phillips, 2003), we put forward a behavioral approach to legitimacy and a theoretical model of the “managerial legitimacy” of top executives. Then, building on a qualitative analysis of 39 interviews with French executives in 5 companies, we review the productive and destructive practices in the making of top executive legitimacy as viewed by employees. This allows us to identify future directions in the study of top executive legitimacy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAnnual Meeting of the Society for Business Ethics
Place of PublicationSan Antonio, Texas
Pages0-0
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 11 Aug 2011
EventAnnual Meeting of the Society for Business Ethics - San Antonio, Texus, 2011
Duration: 11 Aug 2011 → …

Conference

ConferenceAnnual Meeting of the Society for Business Ethics
Period11/08/11 → …

Keywords

  • legitimacy
  • top executive power
  • leadership ethics
  • power

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    Petit, V., Boulocher-Passet, V., & Lamendour, E. (2011). Illuminating power at the top: contributions to the understanding of top executive legitimacy. In Annual Meeting of the Society for Business Ethics (pp. 0-0).