In fast moving and pressurized companies, it is difficult to maintain the encouragement and commitment necessary to make things happen. In addition to this, contradicting well-intentioned ideas can be considered as an asset, not a liability. They can create productive dispute that formulates innovative thinking.
Putting this in another way, handling contradicting interests is important for companies to be able to renovate themselves frequently in the face of furious environmental change. As long as causes are in the interests of others, there won’t be any issue over the legitimacy of political activity.
Constructive managers should be able to create a meaningful justification for their agenda. It has to be established with a clear picture on key business issues, and on how development with these will be ensured via influential relationships. It is very difficult for an individual to achieve all these requirements, and there are considerable implications for the progress and capabilities of managers.
We cannot balance these objectives just through new managerial concepts. This task demands a commitment to personal and interpersonal awareness. This will develop a better understanding of the motivations of oneself and others. It explains what really makes companies work, discarding the superficial aspects of the rational model.
The new definition of Workplace Politics leads us to question the nature of what managers actually do. For example, in the rational model, decision-making is done through a hierarchical process, managers at different levels are given the authority for that very purpose.
Politically able managers are much more critical of rational processes of corporate decision-making. They are aware of the fact that power does not always demand formal authority, strategic decisions can sometimes be made informally, irrespective of that authority. Thus politically able managers acknowledge the chance to make initiatives happen irrespective of accepted ways of working. This necessitates developing a range of strong Organizational relationships, up, down, sideways and external to the Organization. This type of network facilitates them to stay tuned to emergent issues, lobby for support, test out the value of different projects etc.
Realizing that organizational strategies arise from negotiations between parties with shared interests makes managers spend their time and energy in relevant operations. For example, politically capable managers mostly generate change from the bottom-up, through local initiatives. Sometimes, these initiatives run counter to official policy but are completed by using power and political stealth. But in all cases, such initiatives are encouraged by individuals who willingly take responsibility to make things happen, as their managers can make them see a personal benefit for them in achieving the goal.