Sygma Networks Inc.
Sygma Networks Inc.
Power and politics greatly influence the culture of organizations. There are four bases of power, namely expert, referent, legitimate, and coercive. Expert power vests in an individual as a result of the knowledge one has regarding a subject. Referent power occurs when the social agent has similar power as a person. Legitimate power is the agent in question who has higher hierarchical position than the person. Coercive power emerges, when an agent uses corresponding authority to harm the person. The Sygma Networks Inc.’s culture of hierarchy and exercise of power or authority by top management faces great influence due to its implementation of legitimate power, which depends on the organization’s horizontal and vertical power sources.
Influence of Politics and Power on Sygma Networks Inc. Culture
Sygma Networks Inc. implements legitimate base of power. The top management has more power vested in them by virtue of their executive position as compared to low level management and employees. Middle-level or line managers are more powerful than low-level employees, which makes them effectively work with the latter to realize strategic objectives. The top management ensures implementation of their desires and strategies through the use of apparent sincerity. According to Ene (2014), apparent sincerity is the ability of a person to appear to be genuine despite his principal intention. Nonetheless, apparent sincerity works best if the person being influenced believes that the intention of the influencer is not negative. The management uses their power and influence to ensure that new employees exceed the normal training requirements demanded by the company, providing that the employees believe that they are receive the best training. The human resource department does not monitor the related sessions; instead, it allows monitoring the work of employee during the company’s driver. The drivers are also not aware that the work of monitoring employees during training is not for them but religiously works as if it was theirs. During truck driving, the managers were highly concerned with the ability of drivers to deliver products to the clients within the required time frames. Without noticing safety precautions, the drivers strive to reach their destinations within the shortest time possible in order to receive praise and high bonuses from the management, thus rewarding power. The drivers who do not produce results or do not deliver products correspondingly have their rewards withheld and receive warning not to repeat the same mistake. Legitimate power positively impacts performance of the organization.
Politics and power is also exhibited in Sygma Networks Inc. through its work- and interest groups. The organization consists of departments and work activities groups. Each department has its own line of activities that it strictly follows. For example, the human resource management department is responsible for recruiting and selecting employees, training, developing, remunerating, and rewarding them. At the same time, the workers in every department are grouped according to the assigned tasks. For example, the drivers of the organization are responsible for dispatching products to the clients. The employees of the organization also have varied interests, which gives them power to bargain (Acemoglu & Robinson, 2013). For example, there are some individuals who value contract employment, thus grouping according to their interest, while others value permanent employment, and are therefore grouped according to their preferences. The organization groups the workers according to the power they posses due to their tasks and interests (Chafra, 2016). The departments and work groups have the political power to influence the activities and structure of the organization. The drivers ineffectively use their power, thus influencing the operations of the organization. For example, the drivers to not implement the company’s policies and procedures as enshrined in the organization’s handbook. They also set their own daily rules and working procedures creating a relaxed and insecure working atmosphere. The power practiced through workgroups and interest groups negatively influences the operations of Sygma Networks Inc., especially when the preferences of the groups contradict with the organizational strategies and established rules.
The management of Sygma Networks Inc. also practices coercive base of power during tough times or when there are highly important objectives to meet. In other words, while experiencing difficult economic conditions or when there is need to change strategy due to abrupt changes in clients’ demands and needs, the company’s management is responsible for utilizing coercive force to make employees change strategy and meet all the requirements of the clients (Chafra, 2016). For example, one of the drivers indicated that the client changed the destination of products while he was delivering them to the customer. The management called the driver and forced him to change his route and supply the products to the changed destination within the required timeframe. Thus, the driver did not have any option but to obey the order. Low-level employees are always afraid of the top management. In this regard, they usually have to implement the directives provided to them by the top management without questioning. Moreover, in case they know that the directives might be dangerous to their lives, especially for the drivers, they have to obey the order despite possible hazards. Coercive power influences Sygma Networks Inc. in a positive and negative way depending on is the manner and time of its utilization. When the company applies it in a way as shown in the provided example when the driver rushed to deliver the products to a changed destination within the specified frameworks time, it may negatively influence the motivation, safety, and performance of the employees. However, it will positively affect the customer service as they will be able to receive its products in good time.
Sources of Power
The first source of power at Sygma Networks Inc. is vertical and horizontal ones. Vertical power sources are derived from structural position of the organization, personal characteristics, and expertise. Acemoglu and Robinson (2013) indicate that all the employees in a company possess some form of power. The management of Sygma Networks Inc. has the highest amount of such an influence. They introduce organizational strategies and oversee their implementation respectively. In addition, they pass the power of implementation to the middle level management who thereafter supervises employees who fulfill their duties in compliance with the instructions in order to ensure implementation of the strategies. For example, the truck drivers have the power to drive and reach the places they are designated within the scheduled time. Moreover, the top management has more access to information and resources than middle and low level employees (Acemoglu, & Robinson, 2013). They use their power to allocate resources for the projects they consider as beneficial to the organization and deny assets to less profitable projects. Therefore, they use their power to manipulate the attitude and efforts of clients to ensure that they work towards achieving specific goals.
Sygma Networks Inc. implements horizontal power source. The top management of the organization, middle-level management, and low-level employees have similar power at each level (Danish et al., 2014). For example, the employees at the top level management have similar influence. Thus, they have the same power to vote for organizational issues and make corresponding decisions. The low level employees, such as drivers, have horizontal power, as they fulfill similar duties. Consequently, Sygma Networks Inc. implements horizontal power through various levels as the employees at similar level implement the same tasks.
The second source of power at Sygma Networks Inc. depends on a leader’s charisma. One of the top managers, John Smith, has personal characteristics of approaching problems and interacting with employees, due to which all employees admire him. Smith attracts others, is highly respected, and is able to hold employees captivated. When the workers face any problems with the management, Smith always leads discussions with them and helps address their problems. Due to his charisma, he is able to effectively interact with the clients and offer them solutions that are agreeable. Even if some employees do not agree with the solutions Smith presents to them, they basically accept them as they consider that he represents their interests and would not allow them being frustrated.
The last source of power at Sygma Networks Inc. depends on expert employees. According to Lee, Smith, and Henry (2013), expert power emanates from information that a person is able to bring to the organization. Employees in the company have power that is derived from their areas of expertise and professionalism. The education status or achievement of the managers in the organization is higher, thus providing expert power. Consequently, the experts exert their power while performing their duties. For example, the information technology expert exerts power while maintaining the information systems, such as websites of the organization.
Leadership Behavior and Culture
To influence leadership behavior and improve the culture of Sygma Networks Inc., the study of power and politics would enable practicing rational persuasion, inspirational appeals, consultation, coalition tactics, exchange, and personal appeal to influence their followers. The study of power and politics will equip the leaders at Sygma Networks Inc. with the necessary skills to use facts and logical arguments while persuading the followers to agree with their courses of action. The followers or employees will be confident in relation to the outcomes of their work if the management is able to provide facts regarding the issues they require from the employees to agree with and follow. Studying power and politics will also enable the management manipulate the emotions of the staff as well as in case they require from the employees to agree to their courses of action (Orwa & Wachira, 2012). The leaders will have to continuously utilize inspirational words such as “when you work here, note that you work not for the company but for yourself”. Thus, the management will be able to apply appeals that are personal and authentic to the employees to enable them gain necessary support.
In addition to inspirational appeals, studying power and politics will help the management gain consultation skills. In such a way, the management will be able to ask help from others, especially from all the stakeholders of the organization, before making major decisions in the company. Moreover, consultation will enable the organization to develop a culture decision making in a democratic way (Pillay, 2013). The company will also recognize the input of lower level management and employees as well as solve their problems respectively. In addition, the management of the organization will identify and solve safety and training problems experienced by the company’s drivers using consultations. They will also meet the clients’ needs, thereby increasing organizational profitability. The management will also be able to enhance coalitions among the employees within the company. For example, the organization should allow the workers to form coalitions, such as unions, which might help fight for employee’s salary rise and safe working conditions to enhance their livelihood and improve their performance. The management will use influential people in the coalitions to help them convince employees agree with the requirements of the company.
Personal appeals and exchange are also tactics that the management of Sygma can gain through learning politics and power. The company can learn to help employees solve their problems demonstrating respect and considering the fact that the people request assistance from the management. The directors can also offer help to the employees, such rewards, with the aim of expecting specific services provided by the workers that will be beneficial to them.
Leadership behavior in an organization is an important and complex task. A leader may have the power to execute some actions but lack the right to implement it. At the same time, leadership of an organization may have the right to work for a specific project but lack the power to execute it. In this regard, the organization may not be stable. Therefore, the company would not be able to perform its day-to-day activities and realize its strategy. Unbalanced authority and power increases conflicts in the organization, which may cripple their operations. Consequently, it is important to provide leadership with the power and right to execute duties that pertain to their positions. Leadership influence is effectively realized in an organization when the top management has power and authority (Shokri, 2017). For example, the top manager should have the power to introduce organizational strategies and the authority to allocate resources that will enable their effective execution. Leadership should also provide equal power and authority to the low-level employees. Complexity and importance of this issue ensures that power and authority is equally provided at all levels of organizational structure, thus enhancing an overall performance of the company.
In summary, Sygma Networks Inc.’s implements legitimate power that has enabled it to exercise organizational culture of hierarchy. Nonetheless, it needs to apply consultation, coalition tactics, inspirational appeals, rational persuasion, exchange, and personal appeal to influence their followers who should change its organizational culture to democratic decision making. It is also necessary to effectively implement the sources of power to enable employees’ safety, whereas meeting the clients’ needs should prioritize the desire of making the profits.
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