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Unformatted text preview: olitics Unit 11 goals of the organization and the acceptable means are established by organizationally powerful individuals in negotiation with others. Thus, organizational politics is also the use of power to develop socially acceptable ends and means that balance individual and collective interests. Factors Contributing to Political Behavior 1. Individual factors: Researchers have identified certain personality traits, needs, and other factors that are likely to be related to political behavior. They are as follows: a. Employees who are high self­monitors, possess an internal locus of control, and have a high need for power are more likely to engage in political behavior. b. The high self­monitor is more sensitive to social cues and in all probability be more likely to be skilled in political behavior than the low self­monitor. c. Individuals with an internal locus of control are more prone to take a proactive stance and attempt to manipulate situations in their favor. d. The Machiavellian personality is comfortable using politics as a means to further his/her self­ interest and does not see it as an unethical action.. A person’s investment in the organization, perceived alternatives, and expectations of success will influence the tendency to pursue illegitimate means of political action. The following alternatives are possible in this context: a. The more that a person has invested and the more a person has to lose, the less likely he/she is to use illegitimate means. b. The more alternative job opportunities an individual has, a prominent reputation, or influential contacts outside the organization, the more likely he/she will risk illegitimate political actions. c. A low expectation of success in using illegitimate means reduces the probability of its use. Sikkim Manipal University 158 Power And Politics Unit 11 1. Organizational factors: Political activity has got to do more with the organization’s characteristics than of individual difference variables. W hen an organization’s resources are declining, and the existing pattern of resources is changing, as also when there is opportunity for promotions, politics is more likely to come into play and surface. Certain important findings in this regard are: · Cultures characterized by low trust, role ambiguity, unclear performance evaluation systems, zero­sum reward allocation practices, democratic decision­making, high pressures for performance, and self­serving senior managers will create fertile grounds for politicking. · W hen organizations downsize to improve efficiency, people may engage in political actions to safeguard their existing status­quo. · Promotion decisions have consistently been found to be one of the most political in organizations. · The less trust there is within the organization, the higher the level of political behavior and the more likely it will be illegitimate. · Role ambiguity means that the prescribed behaviors of the employee are not clear. The greater the role ambiguity, the more one may engage in political activity since the...
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