Organizational Communication

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last updated 10/28/2009


  Contrasting viewpoints on power:  (common view vs more accurate)

  • " Power to dominate  vs  Power to get things done."
  • " Power over  vs  Reciprocity (in all power relations)"
  1. Misconceptions of the "power over" view
    1. Abuse comes from imbalance not power itself; powerlessness is a problem too
    2. Power is necessary for accomplishment of good purposes
    3. There is an overemphasis of surface structure of power
  2. What is power? 
    1. It is in  the "eye of the beholder"
    2. Power is always relational.

    3. much control is exerted through cultural norms, etc. (the deep structure of power not through overt use.)

  3. Power comes from 
    1. others depending on you for scarce significant resources or on 
    2. interpersonal relations and position