Lori Ann Hofmann, Ph.D. is a 2021 graduate of the PHD Program in Leadership and Change at Antioch University.
Lori Hofmann at her Dissertation Defense.
From L-R: Dr.Donna Ladkin, Committee Chair, Dr. James Traeger, Committee Member, Dr. Lize Booysen, Committee Member.
- Donna Ladkin, Ph.D., Committee Chair
- Lize Booysen, DBL, Committee Member
- James Traeger, Ph.D., Committee Member
paradox, inclusion, diversity, ally, advocate, equity, leadership, narrative inquiry
Male technology leaders have faced mounting expectations regarding topics related to inclusion, diversity, and equity (IDE). The impact of COVID-19, events exposing racial injustice, as well as political discord in the US have increased sensitivities to when and how leaders should respond to this highly charged arena. This study seeks to understand more about male leaders’ experiences of navigating the tensions and expectations that often accompany enacting IDE practices. Leaders that have experience in leading technology organizations as well as a background in technology or product development participated in interviews exploring various aspects of their experience with IDE topics. The interviewed leaders shared diverse experiences about vulnerability, privilege, making mistakes and taking risks. Often their experience highlighted paradoxes or situations where there was tension between what they were being asked to do and what they felt they should do. The most apparent paradoxes in my interviews had to do with (a) caring for others and revenue generation, (b) challenging and supporting, and (c) being self-centered and being other-centered. The experiences of those interviewed revealed three different approaches taken by leaders in response to IDE initiatives, represented in my study by three different “personas.” Having a strong level of intent toward and impact on IDE defined the first group, while a moderate level of intent and limited impact involving IDE were associated with the second group. The last group had little to no intent and impact concerning IDE topics v and practices. The leader’s characteristics for each persona are defined, including how that leader would need support and what their reaction to crucial paradoxes might be. The construct of personas can provide leaders with clarity regarding behaviors for supporting IDE and training ideas they can request for themselves or for their companies; it can also help leaders recognize the importance of reflection and action regarding various paradoxes that are explained in this work. This dissertation is available in open access at AURA, (https://aura.antioch.edu) and OhioLINK ETD Center, (https://etd.ohiolink.edu).
Hofmann, L. A. (2021). How Male Technology Leaders Navigate Inclusion and Diversity Expectations Using a Paradoxical Leadership Framework. https://aura.antioch.edu/etds/745