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Chapter 9

Chapter 9

13 Pages
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Department
Human Resources
Course Code
MHR 405
Professor
Louis Pike

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Chapter 9 – Power and influence
Introduction to power and influence in organizations
What are the differences between power, influence and political behavior?
Power is the ability of 1 party to change or control the behavior, attitudes, opinions,
objectives, needs or values of another party
Influence is the process of actually exercising this power by affecting the thoughts,
behavior, and feeling of others
Political behavior is the influence attempts that are for personal gain and are not
officially approved by an organizations
Why are power, influence and political behavior important to study?
Power and influence have become central elements in effective leadership
Failures to understand power and politics can be costly to nonsupervisory employees
oThey need to learn about power and organizational politics, so that they
successfully manage the predictable political behavior in organizations
Rosabeth Moss Kanter developed a scholarly approach to determine who has power and
who feels powerless
oPowerlessness is a lack of power
Some common symptoms of supervisory powerlessness are
Bossiness
Overly close supervision
Inflexible adhere to the rules
A tendency to do the job oneself rather than training employees to
do it
Focusing on budget cutting
Punishing others
What are the symbols of power?
www.notesolution.com
Actions such as the ability to negotiate on someones behalf or to get early access to
important info indicate that the supervisor is powerful and has influence
Recognizing symbols of power can be particularly useful in finding a mentor
Exhibit 9.1 on pg 273
An organizing framework for understanding power and influence in organizations
Power can come from 6 sources such as
oThe power to reward and punish (coercive power)
oIt can also come from being authorized by a boss
Both of these sources require the use of influence tactics in order to create outcomes such
as compliance, commitment or active/passive rejection of the influence attempt
Individual sources of power and their effects
French and Raven identified 5 sources of power
oLegitimate power
It is power that is based on a person holding a formal position
Others obey because they accept the legitimacy of the position of the
power holder
For example, if you find yourself thinking “My supervisor has a right to
expect me to carry out his instructions, you are responding to a
perception that he possess legitimate power
When someone gets promoted to a position of manager, he has been given
a potential source of legitimate power
Legitimate power does not guarantee influence, it is up to the employees to
believe that manager has the right to tell them what to do
oReward power
It is power based on a persons access to rewards
Others obey because they want the rewards the power holder can offer
www.notesolution.com
For example, managers control the rewards of salary increase, bonuses,
praise and promotions
Reward power can lead to better performance but only as long as the
employee sees a clear and strong link between performance and rewards
Reward power works only if the person values the reward being offered
(valence) and perceives high performance-reward probability, in
expectancy theory terms
oCoercive power
It is power that is based on a persons ability to punish
Others obey because they fear punishment or some negative consequence
For example, if you are acting in a way because you are thinking “My
supervisor can fire me if I neglect my duties, then you believe that your
supervisor holds coercive power over you
It can be used in different ways, some are more effective than others
Research showed that both coercive power and legitimate power tend to
increase employees viewpoints of stress
In the case of supervisory power, using coercive power through
consequences such as warning, disciplinary actions is required part for
effectively influencing the negative behavior of some employees
Exhibit 9.3 on pg 275
oReference power
It is a power based on a persons attractiveness to and friendship with
others
Others obey because they respect and like the power holder
For example,My supervisor makes me feel personally accepted” are
indication of supervisor having reference power
Referent power is a strong predictor of employees’ satisfaction with their
supervisors and that it is more effective than other powers in influencing
employee behaviour
www.notesolution.com

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Description
Chapter 9 Power and influence Introduction to power and influence in organizations What are the differences between power, influence and political behavior? Power is the ability of 1 party to change or control the behavior, attitudes, opinions, objectives, needs or values of another party Influence is the process of actually exercising this power by affecting the thoughts, behavior, and feeling of others Political behavior is the influence attempts that are for personal gain and are not officially approved by an organizations Why are power, influence and political behavior important to study? Power and influence have become central elements in effective leadership Failures to understand power and politics can be costly to nonsupervisory employees o They need to learn about power and organizational politics, so that they successfully manage the predictable political behavior in organizations Rosabeth Moss Kanter developed a scholarly approach to determine who has power and who feels powerless o Powerlessness is a lack of power Some common symptoms of supervisory powerlessness are Bossiness Overly close supervision Inflexible adhere to the rules A tendency to do the job oneself rather than training employees to do it Focusing on budget cutting Punishing others What are the symbols of power? www.notesolution.com Actions such as the ability to negotiate on someones behalf or to get early access to important info indicate that the supervisor is powerful and has influence Recognizing symbols of power can be particularly useful in finding a mentor Exhibit 9.1 on pg 273 An organizing framework for understanding power and influence in organizations Power can come from 6 sources such as o The power to reward and punish (coercive power) o It can also come from being authorized by a boss Both of these sources require the use of influence tactics in order to create outcomes such as compliance, commitment or activepassive rejection of the influence attempt Individual sources of power and their effects French and Raven identified 5 sources of power o Legitimate power It is power that is based on a person holding a formal position Others obey because they accept the legitimacy of the position of the power holder For example, if you find yourself thinking My supervisor has a right to expect me to carry out his instructions, you are responding to a perception that he possess legitimate power When someone gets promoted to a position of manager, he has been given a potential source of legitimate power Legitimate power does not guarantee influence, it is up to the employees to believe that manager has the right to tell them what to do o Reward power It is power based on a persons access to rewards Others obey because they want the rewards the power holder can offer www.notesolution.com
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