" /> LibraryCrunch: August 2007 Archives

« July 2007 | Main | September 2007 »

August 23, 2007

Office Tyrants

"How Office Tyrants In Critical Positions Get Others to Grovel", by Jared Sandberg in yesterday's Wall Street Journal.

You expect authoritarian rule to come from the corner office, but tyranny from any other direction blindsides you, potentially bringing your work to a dead stop. Lords of smaller corners can highlight the fragility of workplace productivity, and they're also another argument for having friends in lower places.

"The formal organization chart only gives you one aspect of the organizational-power topography," says Richard Boyatzis, professor in the school of management and psychology at Case Western Reserve University. "One of the competencies in every study of outstanding leaders is their degree of organizational awareness -- reading the informal networks, like influence, in the organization."

Misreading the choke points, sources of influence, or all those whose rings need kissing can spell disaster. Everyone, even the titled-brass class, should look down their noses at their own risk. "You might have the keys to the kingdom," human-resources executive Mike Farrell notes, "but if you don't have the keys to the gate, you're shafted."

Full article text.