The paper "Distribution of Power & Influence in Organisations" is a great example of a report on management. This paper will attempt to assess the role organizational structure plays in the distribution of power throughout the organization. In order to do this, a definition of power will first be explored, along with the ways in which it manifests itself and can be measured. Following that, some studies that examine the distribution and use of power in some specific types of organizations will be described. In contrast to that, other studies that look at how power influences specific types of activities will also be examined. The Difference between Power and Politics, and the Nature of Conflicts Frost and Egri (1990) define power within organizations as the “ … capacity to get others to do things they might otherwise not want to do and/or to resist others' efforts to get them to do what others want them to do. ” (Frost & Egri, 1990, p.
17) Simply having power does not make one ‘ powerful’ within an organization, but rather it is the manner in which that power is used to achieve the desired outcome, or as Frost and Egri put it, “ Politics is ‘ enacted power’ , action towards a self-interested goal that is resisted if detected by others with different self-interests. ” (Ibid. ) The definition is important because it establishes that all actors within an organization have some degree of power, even if that degree is very small.
It suggests that the real basis of comparison and assessing power within an organization is not the power itself, but the opportunities different people in the organization have to exercise it.
In order to study power in an organization, then, one must look at how it is employed in conflicts. ‘ Power struggles’ take two forms: either conflicts between interdependent actors with different objectives and preferences for or actual control of information resources each pursuing different pathways to accomplishing an organizational task, or competition between potential collaborators when the resources and overall outcome are unclear or subject to dispute. (Frost & Egri, 1990)
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