The Power Factor In Management

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In the "Harvard Business Review book on Motivating People" they address management factors and what makes a good, successful manager.  They discuss what they call "The Power Factor" and that the most successful managers have this power factor.  Now this really caused me to lift an eyebrow at first because as a manager I never liked the thought of having "power."  My management style is coaching the team and the word "power" always seemed negative to me.  But after reading what they meant by "The Power Factor" I had a whole new outlook about having power as a manager and what it did mean to have it in a "positive" way, the power factor is powerful motivation of your employees.  Quoting from the book "Remember we us the term, "power motivation" refers not to dictatorial behavior but to a desire to have an impact, to be strong and influential."  They found that the better managers possessed this "Power Factor" and that the morale of their people was higher, their relationships were better, and they produced more.  Now this is a power that I do want to have over those that work on my team.  What they found was that managers that had this "power" were ones that really cared for their people and their needs.  This really excited me, thinking that I can have the power to motivate those that I work with to do a better job by just showing them how much I care for them as a fellow human being, how hard can that be?  Well apparently this is pretty hard, because in the book they also address how many of the managers that were in their survey did not have the "power factor" but instead were managers that were motivated by "personal power."   Managers that possessed the "power factor" raised (for lack of a better word) employees that were loyal to the company and saw the companies worth and value.  Where as the managers who were motivated by "personal power" raised employees that were only loyal to them.  The big problem here is when the manager leaves or gets promoted the people who had the managers that were motivated by "personal power" were not able to carry on well and many of them would leave the company.  Where just the opposite was found for those working with a manager who possessed the "power factor" if their manager were to move on they would stay because they were loyal to the company.  As a manager we really need to think about what we are instilling into those that work under us, is it for the better of the company?  Or is it all about you?  I would recommend this book to anyone who it is a manager, no matter what size your company is or how many work under you, we need to be the best we can be for those we work for, they are counting on us to do our best for them.  

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