Interpersonal Influences

There exist a variety of relationships (although they are not always clearly definable) between power and authority. These relationships are usually measured by "relative" decision power as a function of the authority structure, and are strongly dependent on the project organizational form.

Consider the following statements made by project managers:

• "I've had good working relations with department X. They like me and I like them. I can usually push through anything ahead of schedule."

• "I know it's contrary to department policy, but the test must be conducted according to these criteria or else the results will be meaningless" (remark made to a team member by a research scientist who was temporarily promoted to project management for an advanced state-of-the-art effort).

Project managers are generally known for having a lot of delegated authority but very little formal power. They must, therefore, get jobs done through the use of interpersonal influences. There are five such interpersonal influences:

• Legitimate power: the ability to gain support because project personnel perceive the project manager as being officially empowered to issue orders.

• Reward power: the ability to gain support because project personnel perceive the project manager as capable of directly or indirectly dispensing valued organizational rewards (i.e., salary, promotion, bonus, future work assignments).

• Penalty power: the ability to gain support because the project personnel perceive the project manager as capable of directly or indirectly dispensing penalties that

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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