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Power

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Robbins & Judge
Organizational Behavior
14th Edition
Power and Politics
Kelli J. Schutte
William Jewell College
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-0
A Definition of Power
пѓ� Power
– The capacity that A has to influence the
behavior of B so that B acts in
accordance with A’s wishes
– Exists as a potential or fully actualized
influence over a dependent relationship
пѓ� Dependency
– B’s relationship to A when A possesses
something that B requires
– The greater B's dependence, the more
power A has
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-1
Contrasting Leadership and Power
Leadership
Power
– Focuses on goal
achievement
– Requires goal compatibility
with followers
– Focuses influence
downward
– Used as a means for
achieving goals
– Requires follower
dependency
– Used to gain lateral and
upward influence
пѓ� Research Focus
– Leadership styles and
relationships with
followers
пѓ� Research Focus
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
– Power tactics for gaining
compliance
13-2
Bases of Power: Formal Power
пѓ� Formal Power
– Established by an individual’s position in an organization
– Three bases:
• Coercive Power
В» A power base dependent on fear of
negative results
• Reward Power
В» Compliance achieved based on the
ability to distribute rewards that
others view as valuable
• Legitimate Power
В» The formal authority to control and
use resources based on a person’s
position in the formal hierarchy
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-3
Bases of Power: Personal Power
� Power that comes from an individual’s unique
characteristics – these are the most effective
– Expert Power
• Influence based on special skills or knowledge
– Referent Power
• Influence based on possession by an individual of desirable
resources or personal traits
E X H I B I T 13-1
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-4
Dependency: The Key to Power
пѓ� The General Dependency Postulate
– The greater B’s dependency on A, the greater the power A
has over B
– Possession/control of scarce organizational resources that
others need makes a manager powerful
– Access to optional resources (e.g., multiple suppliers)
reduces the resource holder’s power
пѓ� Dependency increases when resources are:
– Important
– Scarce
– Nonsubstitutable
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-5
Power Tactics
пѓ� Power Tactics
– Ways in which individuals translate power bases into
specific actions
– Nine influence tactics:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Legitimacy
Rational persuasion*
Inspirational appeals*
Consultation*
Exchange
Personal appeals
Ingratiation
Pressure
Coalitions
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
* Most effective
(Pressure is the least effective)
13-6
Preferred Power Tactics by Influence Direction
Upward Influence
Downward Influence
Lateral Influence
Rational persuasion
Rational persuasion
Rational persuasion
Inspirational appeals
Consultation
Pressure
Ingratiation
Consultation
Exchange
Ingratiation
Legitimacy
Exchange
Personal appeals
Legitimacy
Coalitions
E X H I B I T 13-2
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-7
Factors Influencing Power Tactics
пѓ� Choice and effectiveness of
influence tactics are moderated
by:
– Sequencing of tactics
• Softer to harder tactics work
best
– Political skill of the user
– The culture of the
organization
• Culture affects user’s choice of
tactic
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-8
Sexual Harassment: A Case of Unequal Power
пѓ� Sexual Harassment:
– Any unwanted activity of a sexual nature that affects an
individual’s employment and creates a hostile work
environment
• Overt actions, like unwanted touching, are relatively easy to
spot
• Subtle actions, like jokes or looks, can cross over the line into
harassment
� Sexual harassment isn’t about sex – it is about abusing
an unequal power relationship
– Harassment can damage the well-being of the individual,
work group, and organization
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-9
Managerial Actions to Prevent Sexual Harassment
пѓ� Make sure a policy against it
is in place.
пѓ� Ensure that employees will
not encounter retaliation if
they file a complaint.
пѓ� Investigate every complaint
and include the human
resource and legal
departments.
пѓ� Make sure offenders are
disciplined or terminated.
пѓ� Set up in-house seminars and
training.
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-10
Politics: Power in Action
пѓ� Political Behavior
– Activities that are not required as part of one’s formal role
in the organization, but that influence, or attempt to
influence, the distribution of advantages or disadvantages
within the organization
– Legitimate Political Behavior
• Normal everyday politics - complaining, bypassing,
obstructing
– Illegitimate Political Behavior
• Extreme political behavior that violates the implied rules of the
game: sabotage, whistle-blowing, and symbolic protest
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-11
The Reality of Politics
пѓ� Politics is a natural result of resource scarcity
– Limited resources lead to competition and political
behaviors
пѓ� Judgments on quality of resource distribution differ
markedly based on the observer’s perception
– “Blaming others” or “fixing responsibility”
– “Covering your rear” or “documenting decisions”
– “Perfectionist” or “attentive to detail”
пѓ� Most decisions are made under ambiguous conditions
– Lack of an objective standard encourages political
maneuvering of subjective reality
E X H I B I T 13-3
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-12
Causes and Consequences of Political Behavior
пѓ� Factors that Influence Political Behavior
E X H I B I T 13-4
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-13
Employee Responses to Organizational Politics
пѓ� Most employees have low to modest willingness to play
politics and have the following reactions to politics:
E X H I B I T 13-5
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-14
Defensive Behaviors
пѓ� Employees who perceive politics as a threat have
defensive reactions
– May be helpful in the short run, dangerous in the long run
пѓ� Types of defensive behaviors
– Avoiding Action
• Overconforming, buck passing, playing dumb, stalling
– Avoiding Blame
• Bluffing, playing safe, justifying, scapegoating
– Avoiding Change
• Prevention, self-protection
E X H I B I T 13-6
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-15
Impression Management (IM)
пѓ� The process by which individuals attempt to control the
impression others form of them
пѓ� IM Techniques
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
Conformity
Excuses
Apologies
Self-Promotion
Flattery
Favors
Association
Source: Based on B. R. Schlenker, Impression Management (Monterey, CA: Brooks/Cole, 1980); W. L. Gardner and M. J. Martinko, “Impression
Management in Organizations,” Journal of Management, June 1988, p. 332; and R. B. Cialdini, “Indirect Tactics of Image Management Beyond Basking,”
in R. A. Giacalone and P. Rosenfeld (eds.), Impression Management in the Organization (Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1989), pp. 45–71.
E X H I B I T 13-7
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-16
IM Effectiveness
пѓ� Job Interview Success
– IM does work and most people use it
– Self-promotion techniques are important
– Ingratiation is of secondary importance
пѓ� Performance Evaluations
– Ingratiation is positively related to ratings
– Self-promotion tends to backfire
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-17
The Ethics of Behaving Politically
пѓ� It is difficulty to tell ethical from unethical politicking
пѓ� Three questions help:
1. What is the utility of engaging in the behavior?
2. Does the utility balance out any harm done by the action?
3. Does the action conform to standards of equity and justice?
пѓ� Answers can be skewed toward either viewpoint
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-18
Global Implications
пѓ� Politics Perceptions
– Negative consequences to the perception of politics seem to
be fairly widespread
пѓ� Preference for Power Tactics
– The choice of effective tactics is heavily dependent on the
culture of the country in which they are to be used
пѓ� Effectiveness of Power Tactics
– Still open to debate; too little research has been done
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-19
Summary and Managerial Implications
пѓ� Increase your power by having others depend on you
more.
пѓ� Expert and referent power are far more effective than
is coercion.
– Greater employee motivation, performance, commitment,
and satisfaction
– Personal power basis, not organizational
пѓ� Effective managers accept the political nature of
organizations.
пѓ� Political astuteness and IM can result in higher
evaluations, salary increases, and promotions.
Copyright В© 2011 Pearson Education, Inc. publishing as Prentice Hall
13-20
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