BA 5201 Organization and Management Organization Theory and

Report
BA 5201
Organization and Management
Power and politics
Instructor: Çağrı Topal
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Authority
Rationally based formal right to make
decisions and influence behavior through
instructions or directions to implement those
decisions based on formal organizational
relationships
 Based on private property ownership
 Associated with the responsibility to protect
the interest of the organization and the
owner
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Managerial authority
Right to make and enforce decisions
 Possessed by all managers
 Larger with the increase in the hierarchical
level
 Based on the principle of parity of authority
and responsibility
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Staff authority
Right to make suggestions and
recommendations
 Possessed by everyone in an organization
 Based on the assumption that individuals
should know best about their jobs
 Not exercised much in practice
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Situational authority
Right to make binding decisions within a very
restricted area or scope
 Containing elements of both managerial and
staff authority
 Delegated to an expert staff by a manager
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Operative authority
Right to determine certain components of
the work and to work without undue
supervision
 Regarding specific tasks and duties and work
conditions
 Applying to all levels
 Supposed to be reasonably exercised
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Power
Potential or actual ability to impose one’s will
on others
 Ability of one person to affect the behavior
of someone else in a desired way
 Influence that does not necessarily depend on
but nevertheless may extend from formal
organizational relationships
 Not necessarily reflecting hierarchical
relationships
 Based on single individual characteristics or
dependency relationships
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Individual bases
Rational or legal or traditional power
Acceptance that its exercise, by another
person, agrees with some set of rules or laws
or traditions considered legitimate by both
parties
 Called legitimate power
 Function of culture when tradition-based
 Identical with authority when rule- or lawbased
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Individual bases
Reward power
Ability to control and dispense benefits to
others
 Ability to shape the behavior of others by the
act of dispensing or withholding benefits
 Based on the size of the reward and the
belief that it will be dispensed
 Depending on the measurement of the
behavior to be rewarded
 Indicating a dependency relationship
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Individual bases
Coercive power
Ability to coerce into something or punish
another person
 Effective to the extent that punishments are
considered as punishing actually, strong
enough, and likely
 Depending on the measurement of desired
behaviors or task accomplishments
 Changing behaviors
 Potentially leading to avoidance and
estrangement
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Individual bases
Referent power
Identification with a person in a power
position
 Not depending on explicit recognition
 Indicating role modeling
 Observed in hero worship or
master/apprentice relationship
 Creating strong commitment
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Individual bases
Charismatic power
Influence or power based on one’s
personality
 Involving no special effort
 Helping followers attain personal goals
 Possible to involve referent power
 Indicating leadership qualities
 Easily attracting others
 Retained long after loss of official power
positions or life
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Individual bases
Expert power
Based on knowledge or special skills or
academic and professional credentials
 Irrespective of hierarchical positions
 Involving a dependency relationship
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Dependency bases
Control of resources
Power of individuals or departments who
control critical or scarce resources within an
organization
 Influencing organizational decisions through
control of resources
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Dependency bases
Solving critical contingencies
Power through possessing and using
information, knowledge, and special skills
 Solving key problems facing an organization
or reducing uncertainty
 Depending on the degree of pervasiveness of
threats or uncertainty
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Dependency bases
Substitutability
Power of individuals and departments with
non-substitutable or difficult-to-substitute
skills, expertise, and resources
 Outside availability and insiders’ loss of
power
 New dependency relationships with outsiders
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Dependency bases
Location in the organization
Being located near power sources
 Controlling the availability of decision-makers
 Network centrality and access to critical
information
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Dependency bases
Position in the organization
Power based on formal dependency
relationships between hierarchical levels
 Emergence of informal dependencies
• Scarcity of expertise at middle and lower
levels due to downsizing
• Reliance on sophisticated new technologies
used by lower levels
• Longer organizational tenure
• Vacuum created by a transition in
leadership
• Following organizational rules strictly
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How to assess power
Power determinants
 Consequences of decisions made by various
organizational actors
 Power symbols
 Representational indicators of power
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Dominant coalition in power
Group holding extensive power and authority
that may be separate from formal power
 Key group of decision-makers
 In-group members
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Stickiness of power
Individuals or groups trying to retain power
as long as possible
 Transition of power problematic and costly
 Existing dominant coalitions reframing
problems in line with their competencies
 New coalitions emerging and struggling for
power
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Politics and power
Different groups different interests and goals
 Stakeholder-specific effectiveness
 Uncertainty and bounded rationality
 Dissociation of formal and informal power
 Organizational politics: those activities taken
within the organization to acquire, develop,
and use power and other resources to obtain
one’s preferred outcomes in a situation in
which there is uncertainty or a lack of
consensus about choices
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Rational vs. political organizations
Agreement on goals vs. multiple and
conflicting goals
 Compatibility vs. incompatibility between
formal and informal power, and centralized vs.
decentralized power
 Low to moderate uncertainty overcome by
more information vs. extensive uncertainty
resulting in power games with information
 Rational-economic decision-making vs.
bounded rational decision-making
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