Bearing in mind the theories you have read so far, and with special reference to theories of identity, you are asked to use your search skills to find out what researchers are saying about the nature and purpose of organizational politics.
For 30% of your final grade, you are required to write an essay of approximately 3,000 words, to be submitted via Turnitin.com (class ID is 3177884 and the password is integrity). Do not submit until after 20 April, 2010
In the context of an organization with which you are familiar, describe the role and extent of organizational politics. Describe the purpose for which you perceive political action to be used in your organization, and whether the effects are beneficial or otherwise for the organization. Explain what the implications are for effective communications within the organization.
Additional note: It should be clear that as the course coordinator, I perceive there to be a strong connection between "theories of identity" and "organizational politics" You may not agree, and I am very happy either way, as long as you take the time to examine the evidence for and against such a connection, and make your case accordingly.
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Pursuit ofÂ individualÂ agendasÂ and self-interest in an organization without regard to their effect on theÂ organization'sÂ efforts toÂ achieveÂ itsÂ goals.
When we heard about the word politics, most people find the negative connotation. Its very rare when word politics use in a positive manner. Political skills can be leveraged to manipulate others and can be used to influence them to achieve more than they thought possible. When we struggle to find out the right way and not able to succeed in our respective streams, we always criticize others for being overly political and and playing dirty tricks.
Different people have different perceptions about organizational politics, it may be positive or negative, good or bad depends upon the person to whom you ask. Organizationa politics sometimes taken as a informal way to make efforts to influence different people and organization to achieve individual goals and objectives. In organization point of view, if individual is having power he/she must be careful to make use of power to influence the way which is beneficial for the organization to achieve anticipated goals or objectives and also their personal growth. For the success of any organization and to achieve high performance acting politically or political behaviour is somewhat essential.
When we think about our workplace where we work, there are lots of people to whom we have to interact or we have the relationship in one sense. By coordination of everybody in the relationship, we are able to accomplish our work. When there is a soothing relationship among all people, more likely you are get along and move ahead. When everybody tries to work earnestly in the relationships, everything will tend to work well. But unfortunately few people always try to work too hard to get ahead by dominating in their working relationships rather than their work. Sometimes people involved in creating obligations and all sorts of political plotting in work that leads to a politically charged work environment. Its sometime quite frustrating to work in an environment where politics supersede over competence and achievements. It sometimes difficult for the employee who is new to an organization or having less experiences in dealing with these kind of politically filled situations. To get rid of political situations in an organizations, we need togo through a proper channel to avoid compromising further. We need to talk to the people directly to resolve the matters and if direct conversation with the people not making enough progress in resoving the things then its better to escalate it to the supervisor or managerial level. Sometimes it happens that managers also involves in the political situation then in thi case you need to take the advice of the human resource manager for further actions.
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Politics and Organizational power plays an important role in an organization. In some of the organizations it doesn't matter at all but insome of the organizations its like a blood sport. There are certain factors which can be used to know how important is politics for an organization
--Quality of coommunciation between theworking team and the superiors in the project and in the department
-- How freely people can communicate within their team members or with the department heads
--By learning different organizational culture
--Notice employees are flattering their managers or boss and involving in superfluous things for self promotion rather than hard work, you will come to know the organizational way of rewarding people on their behaviour
Its better to unattached with politics in an organizational and keep your relationship open and friendly and accrue network with variety of people. After a considerable amount of time you spend in the organization, you will come to know the organizational culture and how much you want to involve in organizational politics keeping in mind to achieve your personal objectives.
Organizational politics is apparently have a negative picture in an organization but it not so inherently bad. Its better to aware about different potentially harsh aspects of organizational politics in order to minimize the negative effect. Sometimes new employee to an organization without knowing the culture and political skill and awareness, there would be a chances of getting immersed in narrow minded politics and destructive power struggles.
I think workplace Politics is an essential and natural part of an organization and employees with different interest and mindset are their assets. To be successful in the organization, one should always be engaged in politics only in positive sense. Its not like people are always positively involved in politics, some of the employees in a negative sense use politics by involving in manipulation, hidden planning for personal gains. People involving in these types of behaviour are not considered as sanctioned by the organization. Sometimes these types of behaviour involved put extra efforts informely to get approval for a special project, use improper channels to take attention during all the official events to highlight ourself in front of senior managers during the time of promotions. Sometimes people who are not involve in any kind of such behaviour feel themselves on a trench because of the unfair decisions of the senior managers of the organization in terms of promotion, rewards and appreciation. This is sometimes I feel is a loophole in the management of an organization by not recognizing the valuable work done by an employee who didn't be a part of political behaviour or self serving behaviour. If the company is over driven by these kind of political behaviour, then employees start feeling frustrated in the company, there will be less job satisfaction and he/she start performing worst in the organization. This sometimes become an alarming issue for the Human resource people , if employees start leaving jobs frequently just because of negative politics been played in their projects.
Organization needs to think about the solutions related to minimize the negative side of the political behaviour which is beneficial for keeping their assets satisfy who are not actually involved in the organizational politics. There should be an equal and open system to gather information about the projects for each and every employee, leaders can encourage project members to form a model showing collaborative behaviour in all aspects of work and also its should be informed initially that making political strategies will not be remunerated or tolerated in the organization.
The Prominent reason what I understand of using politics in an organization is because of the competition among the employees to gain power and leadership. Political power sometimes use to understand what people actually desire or fear and use that understanding to influence their behaviour . This help them to understanding organization culture, visualize the the goals and objectives of company as well as personal. There certainly a negative side of the organizational politics with backstabbing, manipulation, flattering, demoralising but the key to a succesfful career is to maintain a healthy relationship and reputation among all the employees in a company. You want to behave in an organization as a decent player and try to make win- win situation in different phases benefiting the company as well. You need to maintain integrity while building relationships .
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Organizational politics is closely related to Leadership attributes and it can be understood by the fact that leadership always occurs in the context of majority or a group where members are always influenced by leader to ensure they are focussed towards achieving anticipated goals or outcomes of the workdone. Political environment in an organization is very much impacted by a leader through authority, influence and power under different circumstances and its clearly visible during objective setting, decision making, encouraging people in a group, interaction in a team with members to accrue relationships etc. Leadership qualities which developed internally in the organization in the individual have advantage of understanding of general politics existing in the respective organization. While leaders join the organization later or new joiners will have to invest some time initially to learn and understand the prevailing politics through interaction between the groups and senior employees in the organization. They must be focussed while interaction and various organizational activities to understand the flow of information that initiates political climate in the organization. From organizational point of view, it's very essential for the leaders to take the advantage of the political skills and the environment to maximise the organizational productivity in terms of outcome and satisfaction level of the employees.
Individual and organizational antecedents can boh lead to political behaviour:
Individual Antecedents: There are number of latent political antecedents of political behaviour in an organization. Employees having effective political skills are more successful at their jobs or atleast in influencing different people, colleagues, superiors etc and also they can make a difference in making strategies for achieving organizational goals and objectives. If individual are more deeply involved in various activities in an organization or highly invested in an organization either financially or emotionally then there are more chances for them to involve in political behaviour . Also there is one more strong reason to attach politically with the company, if individuals anticipate they will be successful in changing the outcome of the company, more likely they will have a considerable contribution in creating a political climate. If they think they can influence an outcome then they might spend more time and resources to effect the outcome.
Organizational Antecedents : Any kind of uncertainty in an organization can relate to organizational politics. For example When employees are in the state where they can not feel comfortable with their job responsibilities, they observe the organization as more political. This role based uncertainty allows employees to negotiate and redefine their duties and roles in the given circumstances. Uncertainty also prevails during promotions and evaluation of the performance, sometimes it leads to a highly political behaviour like impression management throughout the organization.
Actually employees at the lower level of organizations assume their organization overly driven by politics, who are not satisfied with their jobs and cynical about future success in their organizations.