Power And Harsh Power Bases

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Power is described as the ability to influence behavior, to change the course of events, to overcome resistance and to get people to do things that they would not otherwise do. Throughout the course of history, leaders have been responsible for helping groups obtain a number of goals. Ideally, leaders use their power to steer groups toward desired outcomes or the greatest good for the greatest number of people. However, leaders have been known to use their power in the service of their own self-interest. Five experiments identified factors within both the person and the social context that determine whether leaders wield their power to promote group goals or self-interest. In most cases, leaders behaved in a manner consistent with group goals.…show more content…
The harsh–soft bases of power are differentiated by the amount of freedom that the target feels in choosing whether or not to comply. Harsh power bases, as the name suggests, constrain individuals’ freedom to comply with the leaders’ demands. Harsh power bases include coercion, reward, and legitimacy of position, equity, and reciprocity. Soft power bases, on the other hand, endow organizational members with more freedom and autonomy in accepting the demands from the influencing agent. Soft power bases include expert, referent, informational power, and legitimacy of dependence. Compared to harsh power bases, soft power bases are typically received more favorably and are associated with more positive individual and organizational outcomes. Despite these differences, not all leaders are inclined to bring soft power bases into play. Different leaders have different leadership styles that influence which bases of power they will…show more content…
Cooperation compared to competition and independence has been found to induce mutual assistance, exchange of information and resources, attraction and support, and productivity, especially on more complex tasks. Experiments suggest that goal interdependence affects power and influence in the leader relationship. In cooperation, compared to competition, superiors and subordinates expected mutual assistance, exchanged resources, and developed confidence and liking. Managers in cooperation, compared to competition and independence, used collaborative rate than coercive influence, gave assistance when requested, and responded to the specific problem of the subordinate appropriately. An analysis of interviews with 46 hospital employees and managers reveals that power and influence can be affected by the dependence of employees and managers upon each other. Results indicate that cooperative interdependence contributes to productivity and leads to efficient completion of

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