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Words 662

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The five bases of power are: Referent, Legitimate, Reward, Expert and Coercive.

Referent power is the ability or power of an individual to attract others and build loyalty. “The power derives from one person having an overall likability leading people to strongly identify with them in one form or another”. (French & Raven's, 2010) Admiration for this person may be due to a particular personality trait; this in turn, generates a chance for interpersonal influence. An example of Referent power is demonstrated when Employee 3 was selected to be the team leader on the project because of the eagerness and respect shown towards Employee 3 by their coworkers. It is said that Employee 3 is well liked, very charismatic, and optimistic, and others are drawn to their personality. Legitimate power exists when the leader has the right or authority to tell others what to do; employees are obligated to comply with legitimate directives. “Legitimate power can often thus be the acceptable face of raw power”. (Straker, 2006) This type of power is evident in multiple areas in Company A. One example of Legitimate power would be the Marketing Manager who highly encourages employees to work longer hours in order to get their work done. Other example is the Sales Manager appointing Employee 3 to lead a the sales team, even though they have not been with the company for long. Reward power is the power of a manager to offer some kind of reward to employees to encourage them to complete their work on time and at a high quality. Rewards offer can vary from compensation in the form of bonuses to improved work schedules, even extra paid time off. An example of reward power is the Marketing manager encouraging his employee including Employee 1 the work extra hours to make sure the work is getting done and correct, in order to receive a superior rating on their yearly review and get the yearly bonus that is being offered to employees with such rating. Expert power is power that an individual inherits from their proficiency or skills and a Corporation’s need for those skills and expertise. This type of power is very specific and limited to the particular area that the expert is trained and qualified. Employee 2 is a prime example of Expert power. Being Corporation A’s only CPA and the only employee who can prepare the financial statements gives Employee 2 power to negotiate their work schedule with the confidents that it will be granted. No other employee has a four day work week. Another example of Expert power is Employee 1 who has been with Company A for 12 years. Employee 1’s length of service with the company gives them power that new employees would not have. Coercive power is obtained by using negative influences, like withhold rewards such as bonuses, denying an employee a promotion or demoting them. This type of power is the least effective but is the most obvious. Using Coercive power creates resentment and resistance from the employees who have to endure it. The Marketing manager telling Employee 2 that if they don’t work more than a 40 hour work week, they will not receive a superior review and not receive their yearly bonus is an example of Coercive power. Corporation A has both Positional and Expert power in their organization. These types of power create dependency in the Accounting Department. Since there is only once CPA and they are the only one who does the corporation’s financial statements, there is no substitute, a scarcity of employees who can do this particular work and a high importance to keep Employee 2 happy.

Works Cited

French & Raven's Five bases of Power. (2010, January 28). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:10, March 01, 2010, from http://en.wikipedia.org /w/index.php?title=French_%26_Raven%27s_Five_bases_of_Power&oldid=340593314

Straker, D. (2006). French and raven's five forms of power. Retrieved from http://changingminds.org/explanations/power/french_and_raven…...

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