Written from an auto-biographic perspective, this paper is based on reflections and insights arising from a journey of adaptation by a ‘sociologist-teaching-in-a-school-of-management’. These reflections unveil the relevance to management studies of four interrelated conceptual tools: critical thinking, reflection, reflexivity and the sociological imagination. Examples of scaffolding activities and class exercises are provided throughout the paper to illustrate the usefulness of these concepts in management teaching.