Notes – The politics of situations

The Cultural Issue –
‘Cultures of individuals and groups’
Presentation of cultures
Cultural sensitivity
Understanding difference

Organisational cultures
‘Reading’ management situations
Operating within a framework
Understanding value systems

Theory and practice
All management systems were once invented
The notion of praxis (from Gramschi)
‘Common sense’
‘Good sense’
Technical philosophy

The centrality of stage management – 1
The centrality of stage management – theory
Creative conflicts
Director as ‘auteur’; as leader; as chair-person
Design vision
Obstructive technicians – laziness; history of exploitation
Level of risk-taking
Rule following vs enacting principles

Managing ‘conflicts’
Origins of conflicts:
‘Personality clash’
Competition for power / control
Lack of understanding
Difference of ideology
Politics in organisations
A question of power and control
What are the objectives of the organisation?
In whose interest is power being operated?
What different agendas are being run?

How to operate politically
Stakeholders – people who have something to gain or lose

Gatekeepers – people with the access to resources, influence, or networks

Barriers – people who might make things difficult

Identifying other people’s needs and wishes

Identifying their expectations of you

Giving comfort zones

Avoiding conflicts
Avoiding conflicts as manager
Information gathering and spreading – regular briefings / information exchange
Checking everyone’s understandings
Openness in dealings
Promoting tolerance ethos
Clarity of objectives
Fair and open decisions
Avoiding conflicts as managee
Giving people comfort zones
Supportive criticism, and inviting criticism
Active listening
Helping to clarify objectives
Taking initiatives

Last resorts!
No-one respects the doormat
Get the support of your union
Don’t get mad, get even
Use formal systems – grievance, discipline
Only fight battles you can win
Be sure it’s worth the effort
Form alliances with common interest groups
If all fails, remove your labour

Last modified: Sunday, 6 July 2008, 09:16 PM