S 7. Understanding Power Tactics


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Bases of Power, Power Tactics, Using Power Effectively, Empowerment

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S 7. Understanding Power Tactics

  1. 1. Understanding Power Tactics PGDM (2013-15) Term-II Dynamics of Group Behavior Session-7 Dr. V. Ekkirala
  2. 2. Power • Power is the ability to influence another. • Influence is the process of affecting the thoughts, behavior & feelings of another person. • Authority is the right to influence another person. • Power is a function of dependency. Dependency is a function of:  Centrality: Strategic relevance and interdependency of a function/group  Ability to cope with uncertainty: The degree to which a function or group is capable of reducing uncertainty or able to manage contingencies/problems.  Non-substitutability: Scarcity of skill or indispensability of a group or function to the organization.  Ability to control & generate resources: Ability to control the allocation of resources and to the capacity to create or add value. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 2
  3. 3. Bases of Power • Formal Power: Positional power or authority. Forms of formal power: Legitimate Power: Exercised through organizational position.  Reward Power: The power to use rewards to control others.  Coercive Power: The power to deny rewards and administer punishments  Information Power: The power to access/control/use information. • Personal Power: Individual power independent of formal position:  Expert Power: Possession of knowledge, special skill or expertise.  Referent Power: Based on admiration, respect and reputation.  Charismatic Power: Magical influence of persona, attraction and emotional appeal. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 3
  4. 4. Power Tactics ¹ Power may be exercised through the following tactics (ways and means): • Legitimate authority: Use of formal authority for compliance; Persuade by legitimizing through or appealing to higher authority • Rational persuasion: Using logical arguments and facts to persuade. • Inspirational appeal: Appealing to values, ideals, emotions and needs; Inspiring confidence; Motivational appeal. • Consultation: Enlisting the target’s support through involvement and participation in decision making. • Personal appeals: Appealing to friendship/loyalty to elicit support. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 4
  5. 5. Power Tactics… • Exchange: Making explicit or implicit promise of rewards for compliance or communicating reciprocal return of prior favor for exacting compliance. • Ingratiation: Eliciting positive response through praise and flattery; Trying to get the target in good mood and favorable disposition before seeking compliance. Getting the target to like you. • Pressure: Exerting pressure through demands, threats, warnings or intimidation to seek support for a proposal. • Coalitions: Using alliances and networks & enlisting the support of others to persuade the target for favoring a proposal. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 5
  6. 6. Using Power Effectively • Power is a means of accomplishing goals and it is not a dirty word. • Manager’s success lies in acquiring and using power effectively. • John Kotter’s guidelines for managers ²:  Use power in ethical ways (utilitarian outcomes, individual rights & distributive justice).  Understand & use various types of power & influence (compatibility)  Seek jobs that allow you to develop your power skills  Use power tempered by maturity & self-control (power is not an end in itself).  Accept that influencing people is an important part of managerial job. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 6
  7. 7. Empowerment ³ • Empowerment is the process of delegating authority at the lowest level in the organization at which competent decisions can be made. • Empowerment is more relevant as modern organizations become flatter, eliminating levels of management in their structure. • The four dimensions of empowerment as revealed in research ⁴:  Meaning: Experienced meaningfulness of work. Fit between task-role and the employee’s values and beliefs. Competence: Self efficacy or belief that one has the ability to do the job well. Self-determination: Autonomy at workplace. Feeling of independence. Impact: Significance of tasks. Sense of significant impact on organization through their work contribution. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 7
  8. 8. Empowerment….. • Empowerment increases commitment and performance and minimizes job stress ⁵. Guidelines to empower others ³: • Express confidence in employees and set high performance expectations. • Provide opportunities for participation in decision making. • Eliminate bureaucratic constraints stifling autonomy. • Set inspirational and meaningful goals; Let individuals take ownership of goals. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 8
  9. 9. References 1. Yukl, G., & Falbe, C. M. (1990). Influence tactics and objectives in upward, downward and lateral influence attempts, Journal of Applied Psychology, 75: 132-140. 2. Kotter, J. P. (1977). Power, dependence and effective management, Harvard Business Review, 55: 125-136; Kotter, J. P. (1985). Power and Influence. New York: Free Press. 3. Quick, J. C., Nelson, D. L., & Khandelwal, P. (2013). Organizational Behavior (7th ed.). Delhi: Cengage Learning India Pvt. Ltd. 4. Spreitzer, G. M., Kizilos, M.A., & Nason, S. W. (1997). A dimensional analysis of the relationship between psychological empowerment and effectiveness, satisfaction and strain, Journal of Management, 23: 679-704. 5. Butts, M., Vandenberg, R. J., DeJoy, D. M., Schaffer, B. S., & Wilson, M. G. (2009). Individual reactions to high involvement work processes: Investigating the role of empowerment and perceived organizational support. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 14: 122-136. S-7: Understanding Power Tactics - Dr. V. Ekkirala 9