Topic: ‘Power is critical to understanding the difficulties managers confront when seeking to manage change’. Discuss. Introduction A discussion on power should start with a definition of it, as provided by Weber: “the probability that one actor within a social relationship will be in a position to carry out his own will despite resistance (see Grimes 1978, p…
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Authority in a traditional organisation may be alternated for power but when organisational aims are not stipulated unanimously by those who matter in the organisational set up and adhered to by the lower ranks create power situations. Such situations may present dicey legal cover with given means of control as the response of juniors in the hierarchy may not be taken rightly when power is used. It could be planned involvement or distractive involvement. Buckley has provided a provisional definition of power as: “Control or influence over the actions of others to promote one's goals without their consent, against their will or without their knowledge or understanding (see Grimes 1978, p. 727). An important feature of power is the stress on private aim orientation in stead of together-goal orientation. Power, according to Gamson, is “potential partisans”, which can be defined as, “that set of actors who for a given decision are affected by the outcome in a ‘significant’ way, (See Grimes 1978, p. 727). The impact of partisans and the counter-impact of authority are normally named as power. Partisans attempt to impress upon the authority their side of the issue and its resolution. The notion of change is basic and concurrent in the thinking of management scholars on organisations. The literature on strategic change stresses on the need to adjust to the changing risks and opportunities of the new business environments. They also point out that such change is not recurrent in the occurred extent or direction required. Organisations need to develop this capacity for change to promote learning. There has been vast study on transformational leadership particularly and leadership generally that shows the seriousness of the topic for management purpose. The issue of change is more relevant also for practitioners, which is evident from the volume of books published on change management. Even then it is argued that both scholars and practitioners do not possess enough knowledge of and theoretical mechanism for change. To an extent, this failure to propound a theory may be because of various established perspectives or mechanisms (Ford and Ford, 1994). Change agents play a critical role in an organisation by helping in transformation process. Change agents need to be on the right path to steer an organisation on the road to positive change. Some of the crucial inputs of change are depicted in the chart below (Evans, 2010). Power is the most critical ingredient of effective change. These leaders of change can be seen throughout the organisational ladder. These leading change leaders can be holding any position or power variable to become an instrument of change (Evans, 2010). Organisational change management problems are often not given due attention or ignored totally. In reality, people issues are responsible majorly for project failures. Causes of Project Failure The survey undertaken by KPMG analysed the causes of failed projects. The finding closely associated project failures with behaviours and expertise of the respondents, mostly related to the capabilities, behaviour and attitudes of participants (EPM Book, 2007). Discussion Mintzberg (1984) discuses the power perspective in relation to organisation life cycle in three strides: first by analysing relationships of power dissemination internally in an organisation, with that covering a classification of six assemblies of
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