American Heritage Dictionary Of The English Language 4Th Edition Pdf Four Sources of Personal Organizational Power

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Four Sources of Personal Organizational Power

Power within an organization comes primarily from two factors: personal attributes and a person’s official position – who are you against where are you. (Note: this does not apply to organizations with strong chains of authority and communication, such as the rank-based military or police. While other non-military organizations have hierarchies of authority, they are not as rigidly enforced as the military.)

There are four specific characteristics that we need to discuss as part of who you are:

1. Your experience – Specialized work-related knowledge is a huge advantage because it erases the boundaries of background, formal education or people you know. In other words, if you are an expert in getting the organization’s work done, you have some personal power based on your expert knowledge, which everyone recognizes.

The problem with this feature is that when senior people are brought in from outside, they may have to rely on lower level people with more business knowledge. This can give the subordinate an influence (perhaps temporary) that seems disproportionate to their usually low-profile and almost “invisible” position within the organization.

The danger for the employee is that the new boss will soon adapt to the new position and have a better perspective on what is happening around him. At this time, he will be able to review the actions of the subordinate and judge whether they are acting in the interests of the new boss.

2. Your personal charm – desirable characteristics seen in you by those around you. These include charisma, pleasant demeanor, and physical attributes

Charisma – defined as A rare personal quality attributed to leaders that evokes ardent popular loyalty and enthusiasm. Personal magnetism or charm: a television news program famous for the charisma of its anchors.”*

Although this definition makes the trait seem more like a gift from God than something the individual can influence, research suggests that there are some intentional behaviors that can lead to a “charismatic perception” by others:

  • Articulate a vision for the organization that inspires others
  • Make personal sacrifices and even risks in realizing this vision
  • Recommend or support the use of unconventional methods to achieve goals
  • Have an unusual sense of what is possible and be very aware of the time regarding the important issues within this vision.
  • Most importantly, be sensitive to members’ needs and concerns.

Consensual behavior – characteristics necessary to develop and maintain friendships, at least:

  • Support an open, honest and loyal relationship
  • Be perceived as emotionally available – a good listener
  • Give unconditional and positive respect and acceptance. (“I may not like what you’re doing, but I’m still your friend.”)
  • Make some sacrifices if the relationship demands it
  • Be sincere or empathetic as the situation calls for

Physical characteristics – It is clear that one cannot do much about one’s innate physical characteristics, but one can do something about one’s clothing and grooming. Tabloids at the checkout line at the grocery store often publish pictures of Hollywood stars with and without makeup. Often the contrast is very striking.

Remember the saying, “You only get one chance to make a good first impression,” and whether rightly so or not, many people make harsh judgments about others based on their appearance. Make sure you give yourself every advantage in terms of physical appearance.

What can you do to increase your personal appeal in these three areas?

  • Charisma – how can you be more charismatic?
  • Agreeable behavior – how can you demonstrate more acceptable behavior?
  • What can you do to make your personal characteristics more culturally appropriate without losing your individuality?

3. The amount of effort you put into your work. Trustworthy, willing to “go the extra mile” or stay late to help with unexpected tasks tells people you’re above average; that is, the “team player” that every group needs for success.

A high degree of personal effort is valued in organizations because it recognizes that one is reliable, persistent, and can be counted on to “go the extra mile”—(however defining this nebulous phrase.) a business environment where schedule flexibility is critical in a fast-paced environment.

Unfortunately, this trait can be a double-edged sword for the practitioner if a willingness to do “whatever it takes” is seen by some as a department door.: a person who does all the things that no one else wants and will do, and has no strength to defend himself or say no.

In this case, we recommend showing a willingness to go the extra mile, but also being strong enough to ask for some concessions. “If I work late tonight to help you, can I leave early tomorrow to watch my kid’s Little League baseball game?”

4. “Eligibility” acts according to the norms and values ​​of the organization. The more you behave “as we expect” at our company, the more we will accept you into our culture. The deeper you get into our culture, the more influence (power) you can have with us.

The more you try to fit in or “fit in” with an organization, the more influence you can gather. It’s more than just following the dress code and policies you receive during the orientation process, which means it takes time to understand the culture.

Are there organizational stories of legendary efforts (“Ray stayed on the job for 72 hours during a hurricane 3 years ago”) or decisions that emphasize the company’s values (“Even if we could double our market share, we would have to compromise on quality”) does it help define culture?

If the company calls itself, “the company he will own, the place he will work, the neighbor he will have”, What does this mean for you as a new employee? What does this tell you about the company’s values? How can understanding this statement increase your ability to align and gain influence as a strong advocate for the company’s vision of itself?

Let’s say your employer was an insurance company, and the founders decided that in order to be promoted above a certain level within the company, they needed to meet some industry requirements for professional certification.

“But I’m in HR and I don’t deal with clients! Why should I have this certification?” you can say The answer is that the founders wanted to make sure that every employee above a certain salary level shared the same understanding of the industry and the need for customer service. This means that they will focus more on the company as a whole rather than on their functional department within the company. According to the founders, this is a way to insure the continuity of the corporate culture.

If you loudly protest that it doesn’t make sense in today’s world, no matter what the founders thought 50 years ago, you can seriously threaten your credibility and subsequent influence within the organization. This does not mean that speaking should be discouraged, but rather that a person may be expected to “pay their dues” before they can speak with any legitimacy within a culture.

Focus on these four sources of organizational strength consistently for 12 months, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised by your career potential a year from now!

*The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition

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