Sources of power vary with personality and circumstance that people find themselves in
Sources of power vary with personality and circumstance that people find themselves in, in different organizations at different times (Robbins & JUdge, 2007). The significant aspect of this source of power is the fact that it defines who a leader is and the level of the leader’s significance in the present and future of such an organization. The Corporation in question has different employees who attract the attention of the employer in different capacities and different ways. Their role reinforces the five bases of power in Corporation A.
The Bases of Power
The five bases of power include legitimate power, reward power, referent power, expert power, and coercive power. In the given scenario, the first employee seems to attract reward power from the boss (Emerson, 1962). This is because she is motivated by the possibility of reward on financial terms. Particularly, the power holder, who is the boss, encourages employees to extend their work hours in order to earn more bonuses. This situation enables both to understand one another and protect the status quo. The second power base is the kind of power the second employee attracts. The accounting manager allows the employee to have a four day week because of the expert knowledge of the employee which enables the employee to accomplish work quickly (Robbins & JUdge, 2007). This effective use of expert power generates rewards in terms of shortened working week every month, such that instead of working for twenty days, the person only works for fifteen. The third aspect of power is the referent power demonstrated by the ability of employee three to effortlessly attract attention from the other employees and the manager. Particularly, employee three is able to attract the attention of people with the charisma the person portrays and the energy they the person puts into work. The aspect of power as demonstrated here enables the employee to lead people in spite of little experience or the short time span that one has spent in the organization (Emerson, 1962).
The fourth aspect of power is legitimate power. This is based on the simple belief that a manager has the legitimate authority to make an employee comply with organizational work program and the benefits accruing from the same. The manager uses this base of power to make promises to the effect that a hard working employee will be rewarded and the employee believes it on the same basis. The fact that the employee knows it’s the boss speaking, gives the employee confidence to work harder. Finally, coercive power is based on the ability of a manager to force an employ to comply with an order. The coercive power in the organization enables the manager to compel employees to maintain a forty hour week and keep their minds and to working a full week without rest. This makes the employee’s request to management seem more like demands for free time on the account that the expertise enables the person to complete work faster and hence entitled to some flexibility.
Relationship between power and dependency
Dependency refers to the condition of reliance on authority, whether, charismatic, reward, expert, or coercive (Emerson, 1962). The relationship is therefore vertical in the sense that there is an intrinsic relationship between the source of power and the power itself. Additionally, since power is a representation of the perception of the illusion of its existence, then it follows that whoever holds its source has to be depended on (Emerson, 1962). The dependency theory of Walter Rodney and other dependency theorists is a case in point. In this theory, Walter Rodney argues that power is wielded by the core by virtue of owning most of the world’s resources (Emerson, 1962). This has enabled them to maintain a high dependency ratio with the periphery. This relationship impacts on an organization in the sense that a manager and an employee have a mutual understanding on interdependence which makes both to work side by side for their survival (Emerson, 1962). Survival of both therefore determines the success of an organization and is the pillar of power-dependence perspective (Emerson, 1962). In the scenario provided, the employees work because they depend on the employer for their living conditions and their financial security. Additionally, employee 1 wishes for a vacation and therefore depends on the manager to deliver on the promise. As a result, the employee works even harder.
Emerson, R. M. (1962). Power-Dependence Relations. American Sociological Review, 27(1), 31-41.
Robbins, S. P., & JUdge, T. A. (2007). Organizational behavior. Upper Saddle: Pearson Prentice Hall.