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PSY 126 Week 9: Ethical Power, Politics, & Etiquette



Ethical Power, Politics,
& Etiquette
Matthew L. Eisenhard, Psy.D.
Week 9: Psychology for Business & Industry
• Is a person’s ability to
influence others to do
something that they would
not do otherwise.
▫ Necessary to meet al...
Organizational Power
• Power can be used to manipulate and corrupt –
a negative connotation.
▫ Properly used, it gives the...

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PSY 126 Week 9: Ethical Power, Politics, & Etiquette

  1. 1. Ethical Power, Politics, & Etiquette Matthew L. Eisenhard, Psy.D. Week 9: Psychology for Business & Industry
  2. 2. Power • Is a person’s ability to influence others to do something that they would not do otherwise. ▫ Necessary to meet all goals in the organization. ▫ Self-assessment 9.1 examines your power base. • Who holds the power, and how they use it affects performance. ▫ Excessive power decreases performance. ▫ Some seek it, others reject it. ▫ Leadership and power go hand in hand.
  3. 3. Organizational Power • Power can be used to manipulate and corrupt – a negative connotation. ▫ Properly used, it gives the ability to achieve goals. ▫ Power provides strength to bring about change. ▫ Skill in using power effectively and appropriately can be developed.
  4. 4. Bases of Power • Two Levels • POSITION POWER ▫ Comes from top management. ▫ Is delegated down the chain of command. • PERSONAL POWER ▫ Comes from your personal style and interpersonal skills. ▫ Is given to you from those who choose to follow you (earned?).
  5. 5. Bases of Power • It is not necessary to take power away from others to gain your own power. ▫ Positive people are more likely to gain power than negative people. ▫ Power is given to those who others genuinely like. • 7 bases of power are… 1. Coercive 2.Connection 3.Reward 4.Legitimate 5. Referent 6.Information 7. Expert
  6. 6. Coercive Power • Uses threats, punishment, being a bully. ▫ Appropriate when needed to maintain discipline and enforcing rules. ▫ Should be used minimally as it often has negative effects on human relations and productivity. • To use it you must be in a position that gives the ability to hire, fire, and discipline employees.
  7. 7. Connection Power • Based on one’s relationship with influential people. ▫ Not “what,” but “who” you know. ▫ If you have connections to “power,” others are more likely to comply with your requests. • To increase your connection power, join the “in crowd.” ▫ Identify people who can help you, make alliances with them. ▫ When you need/want something, they will be your allies. • Get your name in the public eye. • Make sure people in power know about your accomplishments.
  8. 8. Reward Power • Based on your ability to influence people with something of value to them. ▫ Positive reinforcement – recognition, raises, promotions. • Reciprocity with peers – exchange of favors. • Let the word out – let others know what rewards you offer. ▫ To use it you need to be in a position of control over resources. ▫ Find out what others value and use it as a reward. ▫ Using praise increases your reward power.
  9. 9. Legitimate Power • Based on the person’s perception (credibility) in the organization. ▫ People tend to feel like they should comply with their bosses. ▫ Most day-to-day interactions are based on this power. • To increase your legitimate power, let people know about it. ▫ Remember it’s all about perception. So, even if you do not have it, give the impression that you do. ▫ If others perceive you as having it, then you do.
  10. 10. Referent Power • Based on your personal power. ▫ You rely on your charm – “pretty please?” ▫ Appropriate for people with weak, or no position power. • To gain it, develop relationships with others, be their advocate. ▫ Gaining the confidence of your boss will help you gain referent power.
  11. 11. Information Power • Based on what information you have access to – insider information. ▫ If you know things that help others, you have the power. • To help gain information power, make sure information has to flow through you. ▫ Provide services and information to others. ▫ Serve on committees – gives you information and connection power. ▫ Go to meetings, seminars, etc.
  12. 12. Expert Power • Based on your skill and knowledge of a subject. ▫ Being the “go to” person has it’s advantages.  The fewer people with the skill and knowledge, the more powerful it is.  People depend on you and respect an expert. • To increase this power base, get all the education you can. ▫ Take all of the training classes offered in your organization. • Leave the routine tasks to others. Engage in complex hard-to- evaluate tasks. • Project a positive image.
  13. 13. Bases of Power • You can use different types of power in different situations with different people. ▫ Knowing when, what, and with whom is important. ▫ This comes with experience and an ability to read people well.
  14. 14. Influencing Tactics • Along with power sources and bases you need to be able to persuade people. • Persuasion takes careful preparation and proper presentation. ▫ People respond well to appropriate and compelling evidence. ▫ People do not respond well to coercion and manipulation.
  15. 15. Influencing Tactics • There are 5 tactics that can be used to influence people ▫ Ingratiation, rational persuasion, inspirational appeal, personal appeal, legitimization. • Two things to consider before engaging in persuasive tactics. • READING PEOPLE ▫ If you are going to successfully influence someone you have to know who they are. ▫ Anticipate their expectations – put yourself in their position. ▫ Once you know them, be sure to address them. ▫ Keep a focus on what’s in it for them. • CREATING A WIN-WIN SITUATION ▫ Always look for ways to make it good for both parties involved.
  16. 16. Ingratiation (Praise) • Never go a day without praising. ▫ Be sensitive to others’ moods. ▫ Compliment past achievements before you ask for something more. ▫ State why you are asking them instead of someone else – personal compliment. • Acknowledge the inconvenience. ▫ Emotional appeal. ▫ Basically, making it hard for them to say no.
  17. 17. Rational Persuasion • Using logic – just the facts please. • Works well with those who are influenced more by thinking than by emotional appeals. • Guidelines to follow: ▫ State why you need it. ▫ State how they will benefit (what’s in it for them). ▫ Provide valid evidence – know what you’re talking about. ▫ Give the pros and cons – what problems may be encountered and how to deal with them. ▫ Do your homework – be ready to defend your ideas with any that may be in competition.
  18. 18. Inspirational Appeal • Works well on emotionally responsive people. • Guidelines to follow: ▫ Know the values of the person you are appealing to. ▫ Appeal to that person’s sense of self. ▫ Create a vision of the end product. ▫ Be positive, optimistic, upbeat. ▫ Use nonverbals – must be genuine!
  19. 19. Personal Appeal • Based on loyalty and friendship. ▫ Do it for me, please. • Especially helpful when you have weak power. • Guidelines to follow: ▫ Come right out and say you need a favor. ▫ Appeal to your friendship. ▫ Tell the person you are counting on them.
  20. 20. Legitimization • Using your valid authority. • Guidelines to follow: ▫ Refer to the organizational policies, procedures, etc. – “the law.” ▫ Show them written documentation if needed. ▫ Show precedent.
  21. 21. Influencing Tactics • You can mix and match tactics. ▫ Fall back and regroup for a renewed tactic if needed. • Assess the person and the situation. ▫ Rational persuasion will not work if a person is unwilling to consider your arguments.
  22. 22. Organizational Politics • A network by which power is gained, transferred, and exercised (used) on others. ▫ Critical to career success. ▫ You cannot escape it if you want to succeed. • Politics is the process of gaining and using power. • Self-assessment 9.2 consists of statements of ethical behavior. ▫ Higher your score, the more political you are.
  23. 23. Three Primary Political Behaviors • NETWORKING ▫ Process of developing relationships. ▫ Probably the most important factor in gaining success. • RECIPROCITY ▫ You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. ▫ Involves creating obligations and debts – and using them to get what you want/need. ▫ Used to achieve ongoing goals. • COALITION BUILDING ▫ A network of alliances. ▫ A network of networks. ▫ Done in the service of achieving your goals.
  24. 24. Vertical Politics • The relations with superiors and subordinates. • Most important people in your professional environment. 1. Relations with your boss. 2. Relations with subordinates.
  25. 25. Relationships with the Boss • Affects job satisfaction. ▫ Can mean the difference between success or failure on the job. ▫ Vital to develop a good relationship.  A.k.a. managing your boss or leader-member exchange (LMX) theory. • Adapt your personal style to match the boss’s. ▫ People generally like those with similar attitudes and styles. ▫ Get to know what makes your boss tick and what he or she expects from you.
  26. 26. Common Boss Expectations • Loyalty ▫ Never talk behind the boss’s back. • Going over the boss’s head ▫ Exercise extreme caution – makes you look disloyal and unethical. • Cooperation ▫ Imperative to get along with everyone – don’t embarrass your boss. • Initiative ▫ Always look for ways to go the extra mile – volunteer. • Information ▫ Keep the boss in the loop – never cover up errors. • Openness to Criticism ▫ Everyone makes mistakes – don’t be defensive. • Regaining Trust ▫ Admit shortcomings and always apologize.
  27. 27. Relationships with Subordinates • Vital for managers to develop effective human relations. ▫ Don’t overlook the needs of employees! ▫ Possible to do so without being liked or being popular by maintaining professionalism. • Strive for harmonious environments. • Keep morale high. • Manager-employee relationships should always be win-win situations.
  28. 28. Relationships with Subordinates • Friendships ▫ A “true” friendship relationship is inadvisable due to the power differential existing in the boss-employee relationship. ▫ Managers should be “friendly.” • Open-Door Policy ▫ Practice of being available to employees. ▫ Managers need to prioritize the amount of time spent with employees. ▫ Seek balance between keeping employees happy and getting one’s own work done.
  29. 29. Horizontal Politics • Relationships with your peers in your organization and other organizations. • To be successful you must: ▫ Cooperate  Sharing and collaborating are vital. ▫ Compete  Need to balance being a good team player while still making yourself look good as an individual. ▫ Criticize  Don’t seek out faults in others – when appropriate, be tactful.  Go to the boss as a last resort unless a serious offense or danger is present.
  30. 30. Relations Between Other Departments & Organizations • Most jobs require interactions with people outside your department or organization. ▫ Developing good human relations skills and creating win-win situations will benefit you and your organization. • Affects your overall job performance.
  31. 31. Codes of Ethics • Establish guidelines that clearly describe ethical and unethical behavior. • Most organizations consider these important. ▫ When you feel proud of what you’ve done, it is usually an ethical decision. ▫ If you are embarrassed to tell people about a decision or action, or if you find yourself rationalizing it, it is probably unethical.
  32. 32. Ethical and Unethical Politics • Ethical Politics ▫ Behavior that benefits both the individual and organization. ▫ Creates win-win situations. • Unethical Politics ▫ Creates a win-lose situation. ▫ Behavior that benefits the individual and hurts the organization. ▫ Includes management behavior that helps the organization but hurts the individual.
  33. 33. Business Etiquette • Often referred to as manners. ▫ The code of behavior expected in work situations. • Many organizations weigh it as a criteria in hiring and promotions. ▫ Important to project a favorable image when representing an organization. ▫ Proper etiquette changes over time and is different in varied settings.
  34. 34. In-Person Etiquette Skills • Conversations ▫ Use titles and last names – unless otherwise stated and approved beforehand.  Remembering names is very important! ▫ NEVER use profanity. ▫ Introductions – present lower rank person to higher rank person.  If equal in rank, mention elder person first. ▫ Mention a few pertinent things about the person. ▫ Shake hands.  Be cautious with other forms of touching.
  35. 35. In-Person Etiquette Skills • Dining ▫ Use proper table manners. ▫ Person that invited pays the tab. ▫ Don’t order food that is going to be messy to eat. • Hoteling, Telecommuting, Cubicle ▫ Hoteling is the sharing of space and equipment.  Clean up after yourself.  Respect others privacy. ▫ Telecommuting is working from home. ▫ Cubicles are open work areas – try not to be a distraction to others – dress appropriately.
  36. 36. In-Person Etiquette Skills • Cell Phones ▫ Don’t do personal business on the job – follow the company policy. ▫ Don’t use business phone for personal use. ▫ Don’t drive while on the phone.
  37. 37. In-Person Etiquette Skills • E-mail, Texting, Instant Messaging ▫ Select most appropriate media. ▫ Not everyone – especially older individuals – want to text. ▫ E-mail is preferred over text or IM.
  38. 38. In-Person or Digital? Job Interviews
  39. 39. In-Person or Digital? Meetings • Be ON TIME and be prepared. • Poor manners to talk, text, etc. during a presentation. • Dress for business even if teleconferencing. • If using PowerPoints – don’t just read them. ▫ Use bullets to summarize main points. ▫ Elaborate, show your knowledge on the topic.
  40. 40. In-Person or Digital? Networking • Commonly done in both mediums. • Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook. • Always be polite. • Don’t ask people of higher rank to be your “friend.” ▫ But, accept if they ask you. • Exercise extreme caution about posting personal information. ▫ Don’t post negative commentary about job.
  41. 41. Customer Satisfaction & Etiquette • Goal of business = happy customers. ▫ Happiness is based on perception of customers. ▫ To provide customer satisfaction you must listen to their needs. ▫ You must maintain a positive attitude in dealing with customers.
  42. 42. What NOT To Do… • Don’t ignore customers. ▫ Greet them immediately. ▫ If busy, acknowledge you will be with them as soon as possible. • Don’t conduct personal business while waiting on customers. ▫ Give the customer your undivided attention. • Don’t be rude or defensive with customers. ▫ Stay cool, calm, and collected. • Always apologize. ▫ Even if you were not in the wrong.
  43. 43. Dealing with Dissatisfied Customers • Paraphrase and apologize. ▫ Stay calm – focus on helping them resolve issues. ▫ Listen carefully – be sure you understand. • Ask customer how they want to resolve the issue. ▫ Cash or store credit. ▫ Some people are unreasonable – you cannot always please everyone. • Implement solution quickly. ▫ Faster = happier customer. • Prevent future complaints and follow-up. ▫ Do not keep making the same mistakes – view complaints as opportunity to make improvements. ▫ Follow-up by calling or e-mailing customers to make sure they are happy.
  44. 44. Power – Politics - Etiquette • Mexico, Venezuela, Philippines, Yugoslavia, France = high power distance countries. ▫ Strong power and politics acceptable. ▫ Leaders expected to behave differently from lower ranks. ▫ Differences in rank more apparent. • U.S., Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Israel, Netherlands = low power distance countries. ▫ Strong power and politics not acceptable. ▫ Power is expected to be shared with employees (empowerment). ▫ People less comfortable with differences in power. ▫ Less emphasis on social class.
  45. 45. Foreign Etiquette • Always make yourself aware of what behavior is acceptable and what is not when visiting a foreign country. ▫ Pointing  Considered rude in Asia and Middle East. ▫ Gift Giving  Be aware if you should take a gift or not and what level of gifts are acceptable. ▫ Dining  Brush up on table manners – get a book of etiquette for that country. ▫ Drinking Alcohol  Middle East = no.  Most places no.
  46. 46. Key Points Effects of Power, Politics, & Ethics Seven Bases of Power Increasing Power Bases Influencing Tactics Organizational Politics and Behaviors Techniques to Improve Human Relations Business Etiquette Customer Complaints