The Power-Influence Manager Recipe

Handling managerial positions can be an overwhelming job for a first-timer especially if you are hired directly, highly unlikely but not impossible, into that position. It can also cause a great deal of stress especially if you are not accustomed to the pressure received by some one who is both a leader and a follower, i. e. having a boss and being a boss of your own. It is in this connection that several criteria must be utilized to be able to employ the right man for the job. The manager-to-be should have what is called as personal power.

Those people who have personal power are the ones who take charge and make things happen. These are the people who move when everybody else doesn’t and who succeed when everybody else tells them they will fail. However, personal power also has the connotation that it means getting what one wants no matter what. Some can even imagine personal power as using violence to get others to do what they say. But we must not judge that having personal power means going to the top of the ladder at the expense of others.

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People with personal power however are also those who can pull up a few strings to get somebody out of trouble and can recommend other positions for deserving subordinates. They can also get fast access to top decision makers and can sometimes have new information even before its dissemination. These people can even get approval for budgeting with allowances (source) Power, being a powerful thing that it is, does have a way of getting into your head. People with power can sometimes be unbearable, unworkable, an unlivable.

These are the people who, though they have personal power, should not be promoted to a position, of any sort. What you don’t want are people who are insensitive, abrasive and intimidating. Nor should you get people who are arrogant for they would cause more damage than good. You should also be wary of the cold and aloof type for you never know what they are thinking and it would be too hard for subordinates to approach this type of boss. It is especially discouraged if the person to be promoted/hired has been proven to betray the trust of others, i. e. ith investigation.

The overly ambitious kind is also not to be hired for this position as s/he might always be playing politics and trying to get his way up the corporal ladder instead of doing his job. This type of people thinks more of personal image than of work itself. The people you hire should also be able to build and delegate a team. If you hire somebody who is over-dependent on others, like a mentor of some sort, success would be out of the question. The manager-to-be should also be able to circumvent from too much power as he will be prone to abusing it.

He should convert his power to influence others but not to exploit them. If I were to be offered the new river woods plant manager position, one of the things that I must have is centrality. Centrality or access to a large network of information via communication is essential for a managerial position. This would ensure that I would know what is going on under my nose such that all the things there is to know in my division, I am aware. This would also be good for decisions making as the most sound decisions are those based upon good judgment and informed choices.

Flexibility should also be one of my characteristics. I should be able to make decisions on my own, good decisions. The decisions should be the result of my own discretion and not somebody else’s. The work I do should also have relevance, that is, what I do should matter. My subordinates will follow me only if they see that what I do makes a difference. I should also be an expert at my work. I should at least have relevant knowledge about the tasks which will be bestowed on me. Experience may be optional but it would be an advantage on my part since it will better arm me on what to expect and how to deal with it.

It will also be a heads up on future problems that I may encounter as it can serve as guide on how to solve misunderstandings and errors on my department. Personal attraction, though I can’t fully choose to have it, is also essential. Personal attraction is having desirable characteristics which are usually related to friendship. Personal attraction in this regards simply means that I can provide acceptance and positive regard. It may also mean that I can promote camaraderie among my subordinates and be able to sympathize with them. Engaging in social gatherings is also included, if possible, to establish bonds with others.

Personal attraction covers almost all aspects from having charisma, to having pleasant behavior and until having likable physical characteristics. I must also ensure that I exert more effort since being a manager requires more of it. I must manage my time efficiently. I must always be in the know, and have the initiative to know. I should be able to mange my relationship both with my boss and my subordinates. I must also have legitimacy. My actions should coincide with the customary belief so that my subordinates and other members will see me as credible and legitimate.

I must know and follow the existing organizational values so that it would be easier for me to fit in. I should also be trustworthy. Note that even if you are a good leader, if you are not trusted, you will not be followed. In the course of being a manager, there will inevitably be problems that will have to be dealt with. In the face of these adversities, however, one must not yield, instead you should be armed with the three R’s: Retribution, Reciprocity, and Reason. With these three R’s, handling problems will be easier. Retribution is merely using force on others to follow you.

It does not have to be violence but you can put threats. This however may be dangerous as you are also violating the rights of your subordinates. Aside from that, there are also serious ethical considerations involved. You can also do retribution in a more “gentlemanly-fashion” like putting pressure or intimidation. However even this have ethical and human rights violations. The second one is reciprocity or “aiding” others into doing what you want them to do. You can have a bargain with them or be more indirect like obligating them to comply with your demand/request.

This would result to a more mutually dependent relationship as one would gain something from the other. You may even be deemed as somebody trustworthy if you keep your end of the bargain. However, this does ensue manipulation and unfairness. And lastly, Reason. Reasoning is showing others the light in your motive and it gives basis to why what you say should be done. This is a more ethical approach of making sure your orders are followed however this will need a closer observation. You may also encounter somebody with a different opinion which will almost always result to a decline in your request.

However, if you do have common goals, you can have adequate time for discussion and it may be easier for you to convince him into doing what you want without having to violate any of his human rights or other ethical considerations. These three R’s are good friends and very reliable weapons. However, should I find them being used against me, if this be the problem, I could employ several of these counterstrategies. If I find myself in a position of retribution, I can try to shift my dependency into what is called as interdependence. I can also directly confront that person who is threatening me or pressuring me.

If I find myself in a position of reciprocity, I can try to examine the real intent of that person and simply refuse to bargain if I see it the right thing to do. And just like in retribution, I can also confront that person and tell him what I think. However, when reason is being coy, it would be easier since I could simply refuse to comply with the demand if that is what I see as right. I can also appeal to him if I see that s/he is being unfair. And I can even try to explain to him the possible unpleasant effects if ever I would comply to his/her demands. This should also bring light to his/her reasoning.