Topic 4: Power, Resistance and Decision

moancapableΤεχνίτη Νοημοσύνη και Ρομποτική

17 Νοε 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 8 μήνες)

171 εμφανίσεις

Topic 4: Power, Resistance and Decision
Making

Developed by Dr. Ruth Barton

&


Dr.
M
argaret Heffernan,
OAM

RMIT University

Aims of the lecture

Questions of power

Hoe power works; 4 faces of power

Resistance and control

Types of resistance

Decision making

Theories of decision making; factors that
enhance and limit decision making

RMIT University©2012

2

Questions of Power

POWER

What

is power?

Several
dimensions
and bases

Who

has
power?

How

is
influence
achieved?

How
is power
obtained

in
organisations?

What

alternative
theories and
perspectives
are there?

What of
resistance?

Another form
of
power?

RMIT University©2012

3

How Does Power Work in Organisations?


RMIT University©

Organisations

are
hierarchical


Power

as the


ability

to
control

social
interaction


What is Power?

OB blind
towards
power

An
individual
capacity?

Property of the
person or
collective?

Power as the
prerogative of
wise or
wealthy men?

Two
broad
traditions

RMIT University©2012

(Source: Thompson and McHugh 2009:256)

5

Normative
(most
rational
way of
organising
power)
Realpolitik
(how does
power
actually
operate)

Power in Mainstream Theory

Bases
of power



Reward



Coercive



Referent



Legitimate



Expert


(French & Raven 1959)


RMIT University©

Trend spotting as
Power


information power

in the
advertising industry


Control

over information
flow



legitimate power




More power to those who
can help firms cope with
uncertainty in contemporary
business


Power
: Mainstream Theory




The Four ‘Faces’ of
Power


Coercion




Manipulation




Domination



Subjectification


(Fleming and Spicer 2007)


RMIT University©

Economic


Ideological

(Runciman 1999)



Coercive


RMIT University©

1
st

Face
of
Power: Coercion

Direct
coercion

getting
another person
to
do something
that
might
not
have been done
.


2
nd

Face
of Power
-

Manipulation

3 processes



Anticipation
of
results



Mobilisation
of
bias



Rule
and norm making













Of

agendas
: ‘behind
the
scenes’
politicking


Exclusion

from decision
making authority


Power

as
manipulation:
There
is
no direct
exercise of power
but an
implicit shaping of issues
considered important or
irrelevant.


RMIT University©

RMIT University©

3
rd

Face
of Power
-

Domination


O
ver the
preferences

and
opinions

of
participants


Power
that
shapes
our
preferences, attitudes
and political outlook


U
sed
in the
design

and
implementation

of
paradigmatic
frameworks


Forms
of life
e.g. profit


Ideology


Technical
rationality

4
th

Face
of Power
-

Subjectification


P
eople are moulded with certain understandings of
themselves and the world around them


The
organisation moulds
people
into a certain type


Use
knowledge
to produce compliance


C
ulture
of the
customer

RMIT University©


RMIT University©2012

12


A
wide range of behaviour


from failure to
work very hard or conscientiously,
to
not
working at all, deliberate output restriction,
practical joking, pilferage and
sabotage.”


(
Ackroyd and Thompson, 1999 cited in Fleming and Spicer, 2007
)




Resistance
constitutes a form of

power
exercised by subordinates

in
the
workplace
.”


(
Collinson, 1994 cited in Fleming and Spicer, 2007
)






Resistance

Resistance as Refusal



1st
face of power is
coercion



Resistance
is
refusal

to do what the person
in the position of power tells
him / her
to
do



Aim
is to
block

the
effects of power
by
undermining

the domination rather than
changing it

RMIT University©


RMIT University©

Resistance as Voice



2nd
face of power operates through
non
-
participation



Resistance
is to
gain access to power

in order to
express
voice


Internal: interest
groups, trade unions


External: social
movements


Sabotage

Resistance as Escape



3rd
face of power is
domination



Escape
is to
mentally disengage

from
the world of work



Tools
are


Cynicism


scepticism


dis
-
identification


RMIT University©


Resistance as Creation


4
th

face of power is
subjectification


Involves using domination to create something
that was not intended by those in authority


May make use of parody
e.g.
Union newsletter




RMIT University©

RMIT University©2012

Linstead
& Fulop 2009: 669

17


A decision is often defined as a
product

of decision making
processes.


R
ecent
researchers argue that
managers often seek to avoid making
decisions or obscure them, often to
avoid accountability for courses of
action that are subsequently

seen
as misguided
.








Decision making

Traditional decision
-
making theories and ‘choice


Decision making: a
response to a situation requiring
a choice
.




A general agreement about
organisational goals and the
best means to achieve
them.


Unitary
approach




Emphasises conflict & power
struggles between individuals &
coalitions in organisations in
circumstances where participants
have substantial knowledge and
information.

Pluralist
approach

RMIT University©2012

Linstead & Fulop 2009: 671


18

Types of ‘choice’



Which two products to adopt.
Straightforward

Clear choice



Alternatives of improving profitability

Competing
choice



Occurs
when issues arising require
resolution




Choice
avoidance



When information is distorted or
suppressed

Choice
suppression

RMIT University©2012

Linstead & Fulop 2009:
672

19

Types of
decision processes

Sporadic

Informal

Will suffer from
delays

Information from
various sources
of expertise

Time delays

Fluid
decision

Flow, formally
channelled,
Speedy &
predictable

Information from
fewer sources

Fewer delays

Constricted
decision

Narrowly
channelled,
technical
information

Decision made
by experts

RMIT University©2012

Linstead & Fulop 2009: 671


20

Models of decision Making


Decisions are made after careful
evaluation of alternative courses of action

Rational


Questions whether managers are capable
of making fully rational decisions

Administrative
/ Bureaucratic


Introduces the idea that decisions are
really problems looking for solutions

Garbage
-
can

Political

RMIT University©2012

Source: Thompson and McHugh 2009,Table 18.1:
273
-
4

21

E
xamines
the role of powerful decision
making groups
(‘
dominant coalitions
’)
and
why many decisions are really ‘non
-
decisions’

The
rational

decision model


Recognition and

definition of a

problem

Search for alternative
courses of action

Gathering and

analysing data

Identification and
application of choice
criteria

Evaluation of
alternatives in relation

to choice criteria

RMIT University©

Implementation of decision

Assumptions



Problem
clarity



Known
options



Clear
preferences



Constant
preferences



Maximum
pay
-
off



No
time or cost
constraints


Outcome will be rational


(Bratton et al. 2010: 411;

Linstead
& Fulop 2009:674
; Nelson et al. 2012:150 )

B
ureaucratic

/
administrative

model


Based on the
actual behaviour

of decision
makers

There are cognitive
or mental limits to
human rationality

Decision making is
governed by
bounded rationality

Influence of non
-
rational elements in
humans

Satisfices


RMIT University©

Decision made on ‘
best
in

the
circumstances’

Assumptions

Managers:


S
elect
the first
satisfactory alternative
Are
comfortable making decisions
without determining the alternatives


Make
decisions by short cuts
or
heuristics (managers make decisions
on what has worked in the past)


Satisfice


because of cost
of
‘best
choice’



(Bratton et al. 2010: 411;

Linstead
& Fulop
2009:676; Nelson et al. 2012:151 )

G
arbage
-
can

decision model


Organised
anarchy

Not clear if an
issue is a problem,
or a solution to a
problem

Reaction to
circumstances

Total demands on
the decision
makers at the time

RMIT University©

Implementation of decision

Difficulty



Failure
to account for the
political activity of
participants who encourage
conditions of
organised
anarchy
, or who exploit
them for particular
advantage.

(Linstead
& Fulop
2009:683)

Political

decision model


Recognises the
role of conflict and
conflict resolution
in the decision
-
making process

Pluralistic

in nature

Recognises the
role of
stakeholders in the
organisation

Decision making is
about reconciling
stakeholders
interests

RMIT University©

Implementation of decision

Difficulty



The
pluralist

approach
does not explain how
decisions can be made or
avoided in organisations
because of the influence or
pressure of external groups
who may form part of a
dominant coalition.

(Linstead
& Fulop
2009:685)

‘Z’ Model of Decision Making



Look at the facts

and details





Sensing



Intuition



What alternatives

do the facts suggest?


What
are the facts?

Be specific and
realistic.

List all relevant
details.

Be
clear.






Let
your imagination

run wild.

Brainstorm.

Consider various
solutions



Can it be

analysed

objectively
?




Thinking Feeling



What impact will it
have on those
involved
?




Consider the

#

consequences
of each
alternative

# cause and effect of each
action

If you were not involved, what
would you suggest
?





Is
it something you

can live
with?

How do you feel about the
action?

What hunches do you have
about others’ reactions?

RMIT University©

Pfeffer’s Four Organisational Decision
-
Making Models















(
Adapted
from Table 14.2, p.686 in Linstead et al. 2009)



DIMENSION

RATIONAL

(
Unitary)

BUREAUCRATIC


(unitary)

GARBAGE CAN

(
pluralist)

POLITICAL POWER

(
pluralist)



PREFERENCES

&

GOALS





Consistent

among

participants



Reasonably consistent



Unclear, ambiguous,
may be constructed
afterwards

to legitimise actions





Inconsistent, diverse

or conflicting goals

& preferences



POWER

&

CONTROL





Focuses on

hierarchical

authority



Less centralised
,

still
legitimate authority



Very decentralised,
anarchic; power is also
recognised



Shifting coalitions
&interest
groups who
have power but not
necessarily
authority



DECISION



PROCESS



Orderly,

rational



Procedural rationality
embodied in programmes

&standard
operating
procedures






Ad
hoc



Disorderly, characterised

by push
& pull
of interest
groups



EXPECTED

RESULTS

& OUTCOMES





Maximisation

&

optimisation



Follow from

‘satisficing
’ mode



Unclear, ambiguous



Power
& stabilisation

of
demands



INFORMATION


REQUIREMENTS





Extensive
&systematic
information gathering



Reduced by the use of
rules
& procedures
information



Haphazard collection
&
use of information



Information used

&

withheld strategically



RATIONALE

Efficiency
&effectiveness
in
achieving agreed
-
to
performance criteria





Stability, fairness



Playfulness



Conflict
& power
struggles among
relatively equal
opponents



Escalation of Commitment

Limitation that all decision
making models share

Unwillingness to
abandon a bad
decision, or continuing
to support a failing
course of action, even
when substantial costs
are incurred

The
desire to win
is a
motivation to continue
to escalate

RMIT University©2012

Source: N
elson et al. 2012:151

28

RMIT University©

Types of decision

Traditional decision
-
making
techniques

Modern decision
-
making
techniques

1.Programmed


Routine, repetitive
decisions;
organisation develops
specific processes for
handling them.


䱯w 畮捥牴c楮瑹 慮搠
汯w 慭a楧畩瑹


䡡扩t


䍬敲e捡c
牯r瑩湥㨠獴慮摡牤r
潰敲e瑩湧 灲p捥c畲u猬s
policies, manuals


Organisation
structure


know your place


卹獴敭猠
潦o獵s
-
杯慬s


W敬l
-
摥晩湥搠
楮景牭慴楯渠
捨c湮敬s


佰O牡瑩r湳n
牥獥慲捨
浡瑨敭e瑩捡t 浯m敬猬s
捯浰畴u爠獩浵污瑩潮s


Electronic
data
processing


䵡M慧敭e湴n
楮景牭慴楯渠獹獴敭s


2
. Non
-
programmed


One
-
shot, ill
-
structured novel policy
decisions.


䡡湤汥搠批 来湥牡r
湯n
-
牯r瑩湥 灲p扬敭
-
獯s癩v朠灲p捥獳c献s


High uncertainty and
ambiguity.



䩵J杭g湴
Ⱐ楮瑵楴楯渠Ⱐ
creativity


Rule
of thumb (by top
management)


Heuristic
(problem solving)
techniques applied to:


constructing
computer
models


扲b楮獴潲浩sg


捯c湴nr
-
灬慮湩湧


獩浵污瑩潮

T
echniques
of decision making

(
Linstead & Fulop
2009:Table
14.1: 677)

Influences of Decision Making

Influences

Risk, risk
aversion

Personality,
attitudes,
values

Intuition

Creativity

Organisation
Environment

RMIT University©2012

(Source: nelson et al. 2012: 153)

30


Individuals differ in
risk behaviour


Enablers

and

barriers to
creativity


Ability to make
judgment about a
situation based on a
‘hunch’.



4 stages:

Preparation

Incubation

Illumination

Verification


Group Decision making

Synergy = 1 + 1 = 3

Advantages

More knowledge and
information

Greater understanding
of the decision

Member involvement

Disadvantages

Pressure to conform

Domination by one
forceful member

Time required to make
a decision

RMIT University©2012

Nelson et al. 2012: 157

31

Levels of organisational decision
-
making
behaviour


Level of
analysis

Theoretical
Approaches

Key issues

Constraints


Organisation

Theories of
organisation
power, conflict and
decision
making


Effects of power
and conflict

1.Multiple
ongoing tasks

2.Historical
precedents

3.HRM
systems

4.Time
constraints


Group

1.Group
conformity, group
dynamics, group
size, and networks

Effects of group
dynamics,
individual
perceptions and
behaviours


1. Group
norms

2. Group
think



Individual

1.Information
-
processing
theory

2. Cognitive
psychology

1.Information
overload

2.Personal
biases

1.Information
processing
failures

2.Perceptual
biases

3.Intuition
and emotion

4.Escalation
of
commitment


RMIT University©

Negative factors arising from group cohesiveness

Groupthink

Moral
judgment and
reality testing
are
suspended

Often occurs
with high risk
decisions in
high
-
status
groups with
dominant
leadership

High stress
conditions and
threats to self
-
esteem

RMIT University©2012

Source: Thompson and McHugh 2009:375

33

Symptoms of Groupthink


Excessive optimism
and risk taking


Group believes it
cannot make a bad
decision

Illusion of
invulnerability


Conform and
reach consensus


Unpopular ideas
may be
suppressed


Members who
oppose the group
are stereotyped as
weak, evil or
stupid.

Pressure
on
individuals

Group
consensus

RMIT University©2012

Wood et al. 2010 : 103

34

Leads
to discounting
warnings and negative
information.

An
illusion of unanimity
emerges

Self
-
censorships
of any
deviation from group
norms.

Belief
in the

inherent
morality

of
the group

Leads
members to be

convinced
of the

logical
correctness of
what

they
are dong and
ignore

the
ethical or moral

consequences
of

decisions
.

Avoiding Groupthink

Can be avoided with some effort


Interaction
with other
groups

Invite
consultants
and others
to challenge
the group

Develop
alternative
plans

RMIT University©2012

Source: Thompson and McHugh 2009:375

35

Leaders need to be
reflexive

to
assess their
behaviour
and stay impartial


Group Polarisation

The tendency for group discussion to produce
shifts toward more
extreme attitudes
among
members.

Can be disastrous

If individuals are
leaning towards a
dangerous decision they
are likely to support it
more strongly following
discussion.

RMIT University©2012

Source: N
elson et al. 2012:160

36

Minimising Bias and Errors in Decision Making


Generation of free flowing multiple ideas


Computer mediated brainstorming

Brainstorming


Variation of brainstorming , independent
contribution

Nominal group
technique


Discussion with two initial members, then
additional members added until all group
members have joined the discussion

Stepladder
technique

Delphi
technique

RMIT University©

Structured
team decision
-
making process of
pooling the
collective knowledge of
subject
experts


Bratton et al. 2010 :425

RMIT University©

References


Bratton, J, Sawchuck, P, Forshaw, C, Callinan, M, & Corbett, M 2010,
Work and Organization
Behaviour
, 2nd edn, Palgrave MacMillan, UK. Chapter 15: Decision
Making
and
Ethics
, pp.407
-
432


Clegg
, S, Courpasson, D and Phillips, N (2007)
Power and Organisations
, London: SAGE.


Edwards, P and Wajcman, J (2005)
The Politics of Working Life
, OUP: Oxford.


Fleming, P and Spicer, A (2007)
Contesting the Corporation: Struggle, Power and Resistance in
Organisations
, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Haslam, SA, 2004,
Psychology in organisations: the social identity approach
, 2nd edn, Sage
London. Chapter 6: Group decision making, pp.99
-
119


Knights
, D (2009) ‘Power at Work in Organisations’, in Alvesson, M, Bridgman, T and Willmott, H
(eds)
The Oxford handbook of Critical Management Studies
, Oxford: OUP.


Linstead S, Fulop,
L, Lilley, S
2009,
Management and Organization: A critical text
,
2
nd

edn, Palgrave
MacMillan, London. Chapter 14: Decision making in organisations, pp. 667
-
708


Nelson, DL, Quick, JC, Wright, S,& Adams, C 2012,
OrgB Asia
-
Pacific Edition
, Cengage, Sydney.
Chapter 10: Decision making by individuals and groups, pp. 148
-
164


Thompson, P, & McHugh, D, 2009
Work Organisations: A critical approach,
Palgrave Macmillan,
London. Chapter 24: From groups to teams, pp. 369
-
387