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Sess24 Sess24 Presentation Transcript

  • Organizational Behavior Session 24
  • Power and politics
  • Definition Power refers to a capacity that A has to influence the behavior of B, so that B acts in accordance with A’s wishes. Sources of power: formal power and personal power.
  • Formal powerFormal power is based on an individual’s position in an organization. Coercive power: based on fear; Reward power: gaining positive benefits; Legitimate power: represent formal authority; coercive, reward, and acceptance Information power: access to and control over information.
  • Personal powerPower that comes from an individual’s unique characteristics. Expert power: as a result of expertise, special skills or knowledge Referent power: based on identification with a person who has desirable resources or personal traits. Charismatic power: an extension of referent power; based on an individual’s personality and interpersonal style.
  • Dependency and power The greater B’s dependency on A, the greater the power A has over B. Dependency is increased when the resource you control is important, scare and non- substitutable.
  • Sources of dependency Importance: the thing (s) one controls must be perceived as being important. In organizations, those individuals or departments who have important functions have great power. Scarcity: A resource needs to be perceived as scarce to create dependency. Having scarce knowledge increases one’s power. Non-substitutability: the more that a resource has no viable substitutes, the more power is provided by having control over that resource.
  • Power tactics Power tactics refer to ways by which individuals try to get what they want by gaining power. Research has identified several tactical strategies in business contexts.
  • Power tactics (continued) Reason: Use of facts and data to make a logical or rational presentation of ideas. Friendliness: Acting humble and being friendly prior to making a request. Coalition: Getting the support of other organization members to back up the request. Bargaining (ingratiation): Use of negotiation through the exchange of benefits or favors. Assertiveness: Using direct and forceful approach. Higher authority (networking): Getting the support of higher levels. Sanctions: Use of organizationally derived rewards and punishments. Information management: Controlling and skillfully releasing critical information. Impression management: Creating a favorable image and impression of being important. People may use this tactic to build an image as knowledgeable, articulate, sensible, sensitive, and socially adept.
  • popularity of tactics (kipnis, et al., 1984)Most popular Managers for Managers for superiors subordinates reason reason coalition assertiveness friendliness friendliness bargaining coalition assertiveness bargaining higher authority high authority sanctionsLeast popular
  • Ethics and power tactics (continued) Robins has suggested that a political tactic must be chosen after answering to the following questions: Is the political action motivated by self-serving interests to the exclusion of the organization’s goals? Does the political action respect the right of the individual affected? Is the political activity fair and equitable?
  • Ethics and power tactics (continued)Some other important questions based on Sauser’s (2005) business ethics model: Does the power tactic violate the law? Does the power tactic violate your professional ethical codes? Does the power tactic violate your organization ethical codes? Does the power tactic violate societal values and norms? Does the power tactic violate your conscious and internalized standards?
  • Reading Please read page 394 to 413 of the text book.