Political Aspects of Organizations

Politics in organizations are extensive and instrumental in determining the performance of the workers as well as assigning resources. However, politics in organizations is triggered by certain factors including the working conditions and the prevailing environment. Organizational politics have both positive and negative impacts on organizations (Bodla and Danish, 2009). As described by Bodla and Danish (2009), these politics have much significance to the organization and workers at large, although the impact on employees differs from one individual to another. The negative impact of these politics is experienced when they are misused. Proper awareness and understanding of the organization’s politics should be emphasized as it can trigger positive outcomes. This is attributed to the fact that employees will respond more willingly and positively. For instance, workers who are involved in organizational decision-making utilize these politics positively to benefit themselves and the organization (Bodla and Danish, 2009). This paper will formulate an organizational political model and how it influences the performance of an organization. In addition, the model will look at the working challenges involved with international teams and the leadership aspect in solving problems based on morals and ethics.

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As far as organizational culture is concerned, organizational politics are mainly based on the power to act. Power is a crucial entity that is highly recognized particularly in organizations (Bowditch et al, 2008). From Bowditch et al (2008) perspective, these politics refer to satisfactory ways used to create a balance between the worker’s personal interests and groups interests. This can be achieved by having proper knowledge and control of these politics. Organization politics are inevitable as they represented the decree power supporting the existing influence of management and workers in matters pertaining to the organization. Political power can be beneficial in maintaining the values of an organization if used appropriately. On the contrary, it can have adverse effects if misused especially for personal gains (Zheng, Yang, & McLean, 2010).

According to Lam (2009), organizational culture is comprised of values and beliefs. This is a framework that enables workers to develop new ways and criteria to tackle the arising challenges affecting them in the organization either directly or indirectly (Lam, 2009). The behavior of workers is influenced by the organizational values and norms. Edewor and Aluko (2007) stated that organizational culture consists of norms, values, genuine indicators and assumptions about the workers appearance and behaviors. The different approaches used in reinforcing workers behavior in an organization can have effects on the behavior of the worker in the long run. Use of antagonistic reinforcement measures triggers bad influence on the worker’s behavior. Likewise, using of a positive approach result to positive impacts in the long run. Worker’s motivation is considered one of the best reinforcement measures of worker’s behavior. However, better results are experienced when motivation is coupled with positive political power. Therefore, organization management should consider integrating workers in the running of the organization (Edewor and Aluko, 2007).

With regards to organizational climate, organizations choose a particular place where they would like to locate and carry its operation. This is particularly common with multinational organizations that operate in different countries. Movement of these practices to the chosen subsidiaries and branches contributes in minimizing the much needed efforts in communication thus saving on cost and time. The key to implement these practices effectively lies in creating a platform for collective sharing of the available knowledge and resources in an organization based on its collaboration. The collaboration willingness of the organization is relevant and importance in such a scenario (Schermerhorn, Hunt, & Osborn, 2008). As stated by Schermerhorn et al. (2008) this will help overcome the biggest obstacle experienced in communication between different cultures. The problem is known as ethnocentrism. Ethnocentrism results from the domination by one particular culture where it respective members believe that their cultural aspects and values are better than others. This can lead to parochialism, where everything to be done is based entirely on this culture. This problem in communication can be avoided by adopting one commonly known language as the official means of communication both verbally and nonverbally.. In addition, the difficulties involved with nonverbal communication can be overcome by sticking to the written formats of communications such as the emails and memos (Schermerhorn et al., 2008).

Organizational stakeholders are classified into internal and external stakeholders. Internal shareholders comprise of the senior management, workers and the owners of the business or shareholders. These stakeholders concentrate on wages and bonuses, job security, position or rank and satisfaction. On the other hand, external stakeholders include the business associates, clients, government and the surrounding community. Their areas of concern relate to issues such as employment, taxes, exchange rates and fair competition amongst others. Therefore, it is the organization management obligation to equip internal stakeholders with their respective duties and responsibilities (Bowditch, Buono, & Stewart, 2008). This is vital to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency in the organization. However, this is facilitated by good communication through listening, delivering and clarifying among others. Like in other situations, conflicts are bound to happen between the internal and external stakeholders while safeguarding their own interests. These conflicts between these two stakeholders have a major impact on the monetary value. This is attributed to the fact that internal stakeholders expect returns on their inputs and investments whereas external stakeholders require substantial money to cater for their expenditure (Bowditch et al., 2008).

In order to facilitate or overcome different situation, an organization requires political influence. As earlier mention, organization politics is used as a measure to ensure balance in the interests pertaining to different individuals or groups (Bowditch et al., 2008). Most notably, management relies on the stipulated legal means in carrying out and achieving organization tasks. The organizational politics play part whenever the legal means are ineffective or insufficient (Bowditch et al., 2008).

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With regard to human capital issues, organizational politics play a determinant factor. Organizational politics act as a relief whenever an organization is undergoing tough times and complexities. In such instances, the expertise of both the management and the workers is not relevant. Organization politics can enable organizations overcome difficult circumstances when other means are not applicable. This is one of the potential benefits of organizational politics if utilized positively. Conversely, misuse of organizational politics has serious consequences. It can worsen a difficult situation instead of improving it (Bodla and Danish, 2009). In solving of organization situation using of organizational politics, the quality of the outcome is diminished. This is because, political power take effect whenever a short term solution is urgently needed. At this instance, energy is concentrated to prevent a situation from worsening. Nevertheless, the interests of the stakeholders should be always be considered in coming up with suitable solutions to address any situation. This requires the organization management to exercise their organization politics appropriately in incorporating the stakeholders. Therefore, managers require political skills such networking, negotiating, organizational mapping and setting of agendas amongst many more (Bolman & Deal, 2008).

On the basis of the challenges facing international teams, cultural differences take center stage. Cultural differences influence the organizational relationship and representations especially at the international level. It is the major cause of conflicts amongst organizations especially in the United States and China. Development of good organizational relationships is a requirement and is possible through interactions (Lam, 2009). Nevertheless, this proves difficult particularly for multinational organizations due to huge cultural differences. Integrating a common culture requires more time before workers can adapt and accommodate it fully. This is mainly facilitated by the trust and bonding the team members (Edewor and Aluko, 2007).

Trust builds as a result of believing in one another’s strengths/expertise and weaknesses. Trust goes hand in hand with transparency. Team members should be transparent in their undertakings within the organization. Consequently, the team’s performance boosts members trust and transparency. Whenever, one or both of these components are lacking, conflicts are prone to arise and more easily in multicultural organizations. These organizations require much care in handling of the operations especially in the control of both the legitimate and political power. Holding or restraining of power to members of a particular culture can culminate into conflicts due to discrimination. Cultural discrimination exists into two forms. The first form incorporates discriminations emanating from age, gender, ethnicity and race differences. The second form covers differences in education, religious beliefs, marital status, income and nationality. Cultural diversification from both forms influences the self image and esteem of the team members. Good communication strategies plus leadership is the key to eliminating this huge obstacle created by cultural diversity (Edewor and Aluko, 2007).

Furthermore, good leadership is based on moral values and ethics. Moral values ethics help in promoting good behaviors within the workers and the entire organization. Elango, Paul, Kundu and Paudel, (2010) argues that organizational behavior is composed of core values upon which the organization operates. The moral and ethical practices of the organization are governed by organizational behavior. This helps to build an ethical culture incorporating all members from diverse cultures. The most significant role of leaders is maintaining organization behavior. However, leaders should be on the forefront in upholding as well as enforcing these behaviors. In the multicultural perspective, this behavior must account for all the differences arising from cultural diversities. This requires prior knowledge all cultures and religions particularly from the host country and their impact on new organizations based on the existing organizations. Leadership that does not comply with the ethical standards can trigger massive conflicts from the locals. Leadership based on good moral values and ethics triggers positive influence on the organizational politics (Elango et al., 2010).

Development of an organization model is of much relevance. The model must clearly incorporate the culture, climate, stakeholders and the capital issues of the organization. Additionally, the challenges faced by organizations at the international front and the key leadership strategies to overcome the challenges must be considered. The model should be driven to enhance collective organization rather than individualism. Organizational individualism can cause many conflicts in the organization due to one sided politics which in most occasions have a negative influence.

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References

Bodla, M. A., & Danish, R. Q. (2009). Politics and workplace: An empirical examination of the relationship between perceived organizational politics and work performance. South Asian Journal of Management, 16(1), 44-62.

Bolman, L. G., & Deal, T. E. (2008). Reframing Organizations (4 ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Bowditch, J. L., Buono, A. F., & Stewart, M. M. (2008). A primer on organizational behavior (7 ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Edewor, P. A., & Aluko, Y. A. (2007). Diversity management, challenges and opportunities in multicultural organizations. International Journal of Diversity in Organisations, Communities & Nations, 6(6), 189-195.

Elango, B., Paul, K., Kundu, S., & Paudel, S. (2010). Organizational ethics, individual ethics, and ethical intentions in international decision-making. Journal of Business Ethics, 97(4), 543-561.

Lam, M. (2009). Beyond credibility of doing business in china: Strategies for improving corporate citizenship of foreign multinational enterprises in China. Journal of Business Ethics, 87, 137-146.

Schermerhorn, J. R., Hunt, J. G., & Osborn, R. N. (2008). Organizational Behavior (10 ed.). NY: John Wiley & Sons.

Zheng, W., Yang, B., & McLean, G. N. (2010). Linking organizational culture, structure, strategy, and organizational effectiveness: Mediating role of knowledge management. Journal of Business Research, 63(7), 763-771.

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