Organizational Politics

Topics: Political philosophy, Management, Organization Pages: 5 (1574 words) Published: December 10, 2012

Organizational politics refers to behaviors “that occur on an informal basis within an organization and involve intentional acts of influence that are designed to protect or enhance individuals’ professional careers when conflicting courses of action are possible” (Drory, 1993; Porter, Allen, & Angle, 1981). Organizational politics is an elusive type of power relations in the workplace. It represents a unique domain of interpersonal relations, characterized by the direct or indirect (active or passive) engagement of people in influence tactics and power struggles. These activities are frequently aimed at securing or maximizing personal interests or, alternatively, avoiding negative outcomes within the organization (Kacmar & Ferris, 1991). According to Ferris & King, 1991; Mintzberg, 1983; 1985, organizational politics has been considered almost synonymous with manipulation, coercive influence tactics, and other subversive and semi-legal actions. Power and politics play a huge role in organization, from governing how decisions are made to how employees interact with one another. One of the reason politics are exist in organization is some employees who do not believe in working hard depend on nasty politics to make their position secure at the workplace. Employees play politics simply to come in the limelight and gain undue attention and appreciation from the seniors. In other words, politics refers to irrational behavior of the individuals at the workplace to obtain advantages which are beyond their control. No body has ever gained anything out of politics; instead it leads to a negative ambience at the workplace.

The Effects of perceived politics on organizations and employees.

In organization, the impact of power depends on whether employees use positive or negative power to influence others in the workplace. Politics may directly influence who has the power and determine whether the overall culture of the workplace encourages productivity. Positive power in an organization involves encouraging productivity. This includes giving employees the power to make decisions, rewarding employees for strong performance and appointing employees who perform strongly to supervise other employees. Positive power builds employee confidence and motivates employees to work harder. It also results in those in higher-level positions gaining power through employee respect and communication, rather than coercive efforts. Employee retention rates are higher when employees are given the power to express concerns and work together in an organization. Politics in organisation also can create a positive workplace. Employees who learn to navigate the politics of an organization are more productive than those who are left out of the loop. To encourage productivity, organizations must develop a political culture easy for employees to understand. Establishing clear policies and chains of command makes it easier for employees to find the answers they need and spend more time on producing quality work. A climate focused on collaboration and equal treatment prevents conflict that can reduce productivity. Other than postive effects, political organizations also can lead to the negative impact on employees and organisation. When leaders in an organization do not have the respect of the employees under them, they have a negative power. This type of leader motivates employees to perform by threatening them with job loss and other punishments or shows favoritism to certain employees rather than recognizing the hard work of multiple employees. Not only does the quality of work produced decrease under this type of power, but it leads to higher turnover rates in an organization. Organizations that develop climates of negativity and conflict suffer as a result. If employees are encouraged to engage in dishonest or unethical behavior to get ahead and favoritism trumps the quality of work, an organization faces decreases in...
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