Contingency Approaches to Leadership, 12.5 What’s New? If workplace politics are dividing your organization, it is important to take notice and identify the root cause. Do what is right not just for your team, but for the organization too. Do you think politics are a positive or negative thing for organizations? Examples of these self-serving behaviors include bypassing the chain of command to get approval for a special project, going through improper channels to obtain special favors, or lobbying high-level managers just before they make a promotion decision. These two dimensions of power can provide us with the tools to navigate the four metaphoric domains. Each employee should understand their role and how it contributes to the success of the company, and then be expected to deliver. Then, you need to develop strategies to recognize and understand political behavior and to build a strong and supportive network. Dimensionality and construct validity of the perceptions of politics scale (POPS). According to Chancey, a supervisor should display several behaviors to reduce negative politics at work:Â. Conversely, if the brokers are doing more harm than good, you can try to isolate them by developing a counter-narrative and strengthening connections with other networks. Examples of these self-serving behaviors include bypassing the chain of command to get approval for a special project, going through improper channels to obtain special favors, or lobbying high-level managers just before they make a promotion decision. Nonlinear politics perceptions—work outcomes relationships: A three-study, five-sample investigation. It creates a working space outside of the mainstream structures, norms, and habitual routines of the organization, providing an alternate source of power. But “the weeds,” if left unchecked, can also form a dense mat through which nothing else can grow. Yes, it can be self-serving. And second, are you dealing with formal authority and structures or hidden, unspoken norms? The organization then changed its official processes to match these improved methods. Journal of Human Behavior, 31, 24–34. Contemporary Approaches to Leadership, 12.6 The Role of Ethics and National Culture, 12.7 Leadership Development: The Case of Starbucks, 13.1 Focus on Power: The Case of Steve Jobs, 13.6 The Role of Ethics and National Culture, 13.7 Getting Connected: The Case of Social Networking, Chapter 14: Organizational Structure and Change, 14.1 Organizational Structure: The Case of Toyota, 14.4 The Role of Ethics and National Culture, 14.5 Changing for Good: The Case of Hanna Andersson Corporation, 15.1 Building a Customer Service Culture: The Case of Nordstrom, 15.2 Understanding Organizational Culture, 15.3 Characteristics of Organizational Culture, 15.4 Creating and Maintaining Organizational Culture, 15.6 The Role of Ethics and National Culture, 15.7 Clash of the Cultures: The Case of Newell Rubbermaid. Since organizations where the high ground is a problem tend to be risk-averse, you can also try emphasizing that not changing can be even riskier than trying something new. Why? It meant that millions of tax revenues were not collected at the end of the year. The challenge here is to make the implicit explicit. The negative side of organizational politics is more likely to flare up in times of organizational change or when there are difficult decisions to be made and a scarcity of resources that breeds competition among organizational groups. Scarcity of resources breeds politics. Perceptions of organizational politics as a moderator of the relationship between conscientiousness and job performance. Can you think of additional individual or organizational antecedents of political behavior? Kacmar, K. L., Bozeman, D. P., Carlson, D. S., & Anthony, W. P. (1999). Political skill refers to peoples’ interpersonal style, including their ability to relate well to others, self-monitor, alter their reactions depending upon the situation they are in, and inspire confidence and trust (Ferris et al., 2000). Kacmar, K. M., & Ferris, G. R. (1989). Describe an example of a positive outcome due to politics. When leaders trust their team and empower them with insights into company challenges, the team can take an active part in conquering those challenges. But it’s also important to recognize that each landscape also contains positive dynamics. The average employee has little knowledge of and visibility into the company's decision-making. The high ground combines formal authority with organizational systems; I use the term to describe the rules, structures, policy guidelines, and procedures that form the basis of political activities. All rights reserved. To deal with the weeds, get involved enough to understand the informal networks at play. They focus on the presenting issue rather than the unspoken ecosystem of habits and practices that remain unseen. Placing perceptions of politics in the context of the feedback environment, employee attitudes, and job performance. For example, in the case of the advertising company, senior executives used the argument of “leaving a legacy” to get the Chairman to see how he was undermining his own and company’s long term interests. (1999). They’ll engage in behavior typically seen in government organizations, such as bargaining, negotiating, alliance building, and resolving conflicting interests. Thus, here it is important to understand the woods from the trees as you can miss the former if you focus on the symptoms rather than the hidden barriers to strategy execution.