ECE _ DSST Organizational Behavior

The more a resource has no viable substitutes the

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Unformatted text preview: The more a resource has no viable substitutes , the more power control that resource provides. This concept is called the elasticity of power. Elasticity of power is defined as the relative responsiveness of power to change in available alternatives. One’s ability to influence others is viewed as being dependent on how these others perceive their alternatives. This would describe, for example, an employee who believed he had a large number of employment opportunities outside his current organization. Fear of being fired would have only a moderate impact on Mr. A, for he perceives he has a number of other alternatives. Mr. A’s boss finds that threatening A with termination only has a minimal impact on influencing his behavior. Power tactics are standardized ways by which powerholders attempt to get what they want. There are considered to be seven tactical dimensions or strategies for translating power into actions: (1) reasoning by using facts to make a logical presentation of ideas; (2) using flattery and being friendly prior to making a request; (3) getting the support of other people to back up the request; (4) using negotiation through the exchange of benefits; (5) demanding compliance with requests; (6) gaining the support of higher levels in the organization to back up requests; and (7) using organizationally derived rewards and punishments. Those “out of power” and seeking to be “in” will first try to increase their power individually, but if this proves to be ineffective, the alternative is to form a coalition . The natural way to gain influence is to become a powerholder. But in many instances, this may be difficult, risky, costly, or impossible. In such cases, efforts will be made to form a coalition of two or more “outs” who, by joining together, can combine their resources to increase rewards for themselves. Political behavior in organizations are those 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 and disadvantages within the organization. This definition is broad enough to include political behaviors such as withholding key information from decision makers, whistle-blowing, spreading rumors, leaking confidential information to the media, and exchanging favors with others for mutual benefit. Legitimate political behavior refers to normal everyday politics. Examples of this include complaining to one’s supervisor, bypassing the chain of command, forming coalitions, obstructing organizational policies through inaction, and developing contacts outside the organization through one’s professional activities. Illegitimate political behavior is extreme political behavior that violates the implied rules of the game. Those who pursue such extreme activities are often described as individuals who play hardball. Illegitimate activities include sabotage, whistle-blowing, and symbolic protests such as wearing unorthodox dress or protest buttons....
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