Business

Essentials of Organizational Behavior

Fourteenth Edition

Chapter 13

Power and Politics

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

After studying this chapter you should be able to:

Contrast leadership and power.

Explain the three bases of formal power and the two bases of personal power.

Explain the role of dependence in power relationships.

Identify power or influence tactics and their contingencies.

Identify the causes and consequences of abuse of power.

Describe how politics work in organizations.

Identify the causes, consequences, and ethics of political behavior.

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

A Definition of Power

Power: The capacity that A has to influence the behavior of B so that B acts in accordance with A’s wishes

The most important aspect of power is that it is a function of dependence

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Power refers to the capacity one person has over the other person to get the individual to do something. Inherent in this definition is the idea of dependency. The stronger the relationship or the dependency that one person has when the other possesses something they want or requires, the greater the dependency on that person.

3

Contrasting Leadership and Power

Differences Leadership Power
Goal Compatibility Requires goal congruence Only needs dependence
Direction of Influence Focuses on downward influence Concerned with influence in all directions
Research Emphasis Emphasizes leadership style Broader topic: focuses on tactics used by individuals and groups

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Leadership and power are two different concepts and need to be defined separately. Leadership is focusing on goal achievement along with followers. Power is used as a way to accomplish the goal and often followers are also means to accomplish the goal. Leadership will focus on using leadership downward to influence others to help them achieve their tasks, whereas power uses influence to gain something upward or laterally.

4

Formal Bases of Power

Formal power is based on an individual’s organizational position

Coercive Power: Complies from fear of the negative results

Reward Power: Complies due to desire for positive benefits

Legitimate Power: From the formal authority to control and use organizational resources

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

There are two main bases of power, formal and personal. Formal power is defined by the position a person will hold in the organization. People with formal power can utilize different power bases to accomplish their tasks. The first is coercive power, where employees fear negative consequences if they don’t do what they are told. Reward power is the ability to distribute rewards that others see as valuable, encouraging them to accomplish the goals or tasks to get the reward. The last base is legitimate power where the formal authority to control and use resources is then based on the person’s position in the formal hierarchy.

5

Personal Bases of Power

Personal power stems from an individual’s unique characteristics

Expert: Influence wielded as a result of expertise, special skill, or knowledge

Referent: Based on identification with a person who has desirable resources or personal traits

Charisma

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

The second major form of power is personal power, which comes through the individual’s personality and characteristics. This is often more effective than formal power. Personal power can be based on expert power, or the individual’s special skills or knowledge. It can also be based on referent power, or the personal traits or resources he or she offers to others.

6

Effective Power Bases

Expert and referent power are positively related to performance and commitment

Reward and legitimate power are unrelated to organizational outcomes

Coercive power is negatively related to employee satisfaction and commitment

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Expert and referent power tend to be more effective when goals are related to performance and commitment. However, reward and legitimate power do not seem related to organizational outcomes.

We have seen that coercive power tends to be negatively related to work outcomes, such as employee satisfaction and commitment.

7

General Dependence Postulate

The greater B’s dependence on A, the more power A has over B

What creates dependence?

Importance

Scarcity

Non-substitutability

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

The most important aspect of power is that it is a function of dependence.

8

Social Network Analysis

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

We can uses social network analysis to assess the exchange of resources and dependencies within an organization.

A graphical illustration of the associations among individuals in a social network is called a sociogram, which functions like an informal version of an organization chart. The difference is that a formal organization chart shows how authority is supposed to flow, whereas a sociogram shows how resources really flow in an organization.

9

Power Tactics

Power tactics: Used to translate power bases into specific actions that influence others

Some are more effective than others

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

There are a number of power tactics an individual can use or ways in which they can make the power base work for them by moving people into specific actions. Some are more effective than others.

10

Nine Influence Tactics

Legitimacy

Rational persuasion

Inspirational appeals

Consultation

Exchange

Personal appeals

Ingratiation

Pressure

Coalitions

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

This slide exhibits 9 major power or influence tactics. They are legitimacy, rational persuasion, inspirational appeals, consultation, exchange, personal appeals, ingratiation, pressure, and coalitions.

11

Influence Tactic Effectiveness

Most Effective

Rational persuasion

Inspirational appeals

Consultation

Least Effective

Pressure

Combining tactics increases effectiveness

Direction, sequencing, individual skill, and organizational culture modify effectiveness

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Many factors can influence the effectiveness of the power tactics discussed. The most effective tactics tend to be rational persuasion, inspirational appeals, and consultation, while the least effective is pressure.

Their ability to encourage the desired behavior could depend on the sequencing of the tactics. It is often better to start with softer tactics such as exchange and work up to harder tactics such as pressure. The success of the tactics will, however, greatly depend on the political skill of the user and the context or culture of the organization.

12

Preferred Power Tactics by Influence Direction

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

While rational persuasion may work for you, the effectiveness of some influence tactics depends on the direction of influence. This exhibit shows that rational persuasion is the only tactic effective across organizational levels.

13

Cultural Preferences for Power

Culture affects preference for power tactics

Individualistic cultures

See power in personalized terms and as a legitimate means of advancing personal ends

Engage in more self-enhancement behaviors

Collectivistic cultures

See power in social terms and as legitimate means of helping others

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

An individual’s culture influences preferences for power tactics. Individualistic cultures view power in personalized terms and see it as a legitimate means of advancing personal ends, while those in collectivistic cultures view power in social terms and as a legitimate means of helping others.

14

Political Skill

Political skill: ability to influence others to enhance one’s own objectives

Politically skilled are more effective users of all the influence tactics

Political skill is more effective when the stakes are high

Those with political skill can exert their influence without others detecting it

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

When an organization is run with open and fairly applied rules, free of favoritism or biases, political skill is actually negatively related to job performance.

People who fit the culture of the organization also tend to obtain more influence. Extraverts tend to be more influential in team-oriented organizations, and highly-conscientious people are more influential in organizations that value working alone on technical tasks.

15

How Power Affects People

People with power:

Put their interests ahead of others

Objectify others

React to threats against their competence

Tend to be overconfident

But there can be positive effects of power

Depends on personality

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Power doesn’t affect everyone in the same way.

The toxic effects of power depend on one’s personality. Power doesn’t corrupt those with anxious personalities because they are less likely to think that using power benefits them. The corrosive effects of power can be contained by organizational systems. We have the power to blunt the negative effects of power. The people who are most likely to abuse power are those who are low in status and gain power.

16

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment is any unwanted activity of a sexual nature that affects an individual’s employment or creates a hostile work environment

More prevalent in male-dominated societies

Managers have a responsibility to protect their employees from a hostile work environment

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) states that sexual harassment happens when a person encounters “unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature” on the job that disrupt work performance or that create an “intimidating, hostile, or offensive” work environment.

While countries define sexual harassment differently, most nations have at least some policies to protect workers. However, the real question may be whether the policies or laws are followed.

17

Organizational Politics

Political behavior: consists of activities that are not required as part of an individual’s formal role but that influence, or attempt to influence, the distribution of advantages and disadvantages within the organization

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Organizational politics focuses either on the use of power to affect decision making in an organization, or on self-serving and organizationally unsanctioned behaviors.

18

The Reality of Politics

Politics arise in organizations because of:

Conflicting interests

Limited resources

Ambiguity in decision making

Politicking: Twisting facts to support one’s own goals and interests

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Politics often occurs when resources are low; the excess demand for the resources leads to competition and political behaviors. When the scarce resources are distributed, there will be varying views regarding how “fairly” or “effectively” the distribution was done. Perceptions can be distorted such that the manager feels he or she is documenting decisions, but the employee just feels that the manager is covering his rear.

Most of the time, managers are making decisions under ambiguous conditions and there is not a readily available objective standard. This creates a context in which political maneuvering is encouraged.

19

Factors Contributing to Political Behavior

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

There are a number of factors that influence political behavior. These factors include individual factors such as those with high “mach” personalities or high expectations of success. Situational influences such as low organizational investment or high expectations of success can lead to illegitimate political actions.

As well as organizational factors such as a culture of low trust and role ambiguity. The combination of these factors will lead to political behavior, which can lead to favorable outcomes such as increased rewards or decreased punishments.

20

Responses to Organizational Politics

Organizational politics may threaten employees

Decreased job satisfaction

Increased anxiety and stress

Increased turnover

Reduced performance

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

For most people who have modest political skills or who are unwilling to play the politics game, outcomes tend to be predominantly negative in terms of decreased job satisfaction, increased anxiety and stress, increased turnover, and reduced performance.

21

Qualifiers to Responses to Organizational Politics

The politics-performance relationship is moderated by individual’s understanding of who makes decisions and why they were selected

Political behavior at work moderates the effects of ethical leadership

When politics are perceived as a threat, people respond with defensive behaviors

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Most employees will not engage in a high level of politics and often react negatively to politics. Their reactions include decreased job satisfaction, increased anxiety and stress, increased turnover, and a reduction in performance. Even though the given outcome for the individual employee who engages in politics may be favorable, it is often a negative impact for the group as a whole.

22

Defensive Behaviors

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

This exhibit shows examples of defensive behaviors.

23

Impression Management

Impression management: The process by which individuals attempt to control the impression others form of them

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Impression management is a response to political behavior and is defined as the process by which individuals attempt to control the impression others form of them. Some techniques used to manage this impression are conformity, self-promotion, favors, excuses, apologies, self-promotion, and association.

24

Using Impression Management

IM and interviews:

Self-promotion and ingratiation work well

IM and performance evaluations:

Ingratiation positively related

Self-promotion is negatively related

IM by culture:

Are our conclusions about responses to politics globally valid?

We don’t really know

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Impression management has shown to be effective in different situations, such as job interviews and performance evaluations. It is important that in an interview you set forth a positive impression. Many applicants utilize IM to get the interviewer to like them. Self-promotion is seen as important because it shows confidence; however, in an interview, ingratiation is not as effective. Nevertheless, in performance evaluations ingratiation has been found to be a positive technique and linked to higher rankings. However, self-promotion does not work as well in this context.

Most research on employee reactions to organizational politics is U.S.-based; the few studies that have been done elsewhere suggest that minor modifications may be necessary to our understanding.

25

The Ethics of Behaving Politically

Questions to consider:

What is the utility of engaging in politicking?

How does the utility of engaging in the political behavior balance out any harm it will do to others?

Does the political activity conform to standards of equity and justice?

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Is political behavior ethical in the workplace? Well, the answer is probably yes and no. It is difficult to tell ethical from unethical politicking. There are three questions that can help define ethical/unethical political behavior:

What is the utility of engaging in the behavior?

Does the utility balance out any harm done by the action?

Does the action conform to standards of equity and justice?

The answers to these questions can help you decide if the behavior is ethical or unethical.

26

Mapping Your Political Career

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

One of the most useful ways to think about power and politics is in terms of your own career. This exhibit is an example of a political map based on your hypothetical relationships with the people upon whom your career depends.

27

Implications for Managers

To maximize your power, increase others’ dependence on you.

You will not be alone in attempting to build your power bases.

Try to avoid putting others in a position where they feel they have no power.

By assessing behavior in a political framework, you can better predict the actions of others and use that information to formulate political strategies that will gain advantages for you and your work unit.

Help others understand the importance of becoming politically savvy.

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

As a manager who wants to maximize your power, you will want to increase others’ dependence on you.

You will not be alone in attempting to build your power bases.

Try to avoid putting others in a position where they feel they have no power.

By assessing behavior in a political framework, you can better predict the actions of others and use that information to formulate political strategies that will gain advantages for you and your work unit.

Consider that employees who have poor political skills or are unwilling to play the politics game generally relate perceived organizational politics to lower job satisfaction and self-reported performance, increased anxiety, and high turnover. Help others understand the importance of becoming politically savvy.

28

Order now and get 10% discount on all orders above $50 now!!The professional are ready and willing handle your assignment.

ORDER NOW »»