Have you ever felt powerless to implement an important new idea? Have you ever been “blindsided” at a meeting? Have you ever lost two good employees be-cause you could find no way to keep them from attacking each other? These are some of the issues of organizational politics.
Many of us have become enmeshed in politics, but we’ve also known some people who seem to be able to engage and prosper. How is that done? We’ll cover the territory from three perspectives: the Self, Relationships, and Organizations.
Unless you can manage your own inner politics, mastery of organizational politics is out of reach. When we act without thinking, we’re really acting without awareness. We’ll explore practical paths to increasing self-awareness with an emphasis on developing political skills.
Trusting relationships are essential for health and political success. In a dynamic workplace, where people come and go ever more rapidly, forming these relationships quickly is a decided advantage politically, and makes work a heck of a lot more fun. We’ll try to broaden your skills in relationship formation and maintenance.
Wherever you sit in the hierarchy, the culture of the organization is more powerful than you are. You can influence it, but you can’t control it. Success lies in understanding your limitations and searching for solutions that respect your limitations.
- Recognize that workplace politics is not a game. Understand how politics and games are different.
- Increase awareness of politics and its role in day-to-day interactions
- Recognize ten devious political tactics and how to deal with them
- Learn how to make person-to-person and email communication more effective
- Learn how to avoid the ten common failure modes for meetings
- Learn how your place in a meeting room affects your ability to influence the meeting
Who should attend
This program emphasizes insights and techniques for managing political situations that arise in everyday workplace interactions. The skills transferred are both “horizontal” and “vertical.”
Rick Brenner is principal of Chaco Canyon Consulting. He works with people in dynamic problem-solving organizations that are making products so novel or complex that they need state-of-the-art teamwork and stronger relationships among their people. In his 25 years as a software developer, project manager, software development manager, entrepreneur, consultant and coach, he has developed valuable insights into the interactions between people in complex dynamic environments, and between people and the media in which they work.
Mr. Brenner has held positions at Symbolics, Inc., and at Draper Laboratory, both of Cambridge, Massachusetts. At Symbolics, he was responsible for development of products based on Macsyma, a computer algebra system. At Draper, he was a principal investigator in a DARPA program, the Evolutionary Design of Complex Software, where he conducted research into advanced concepts for software development environments based on dynamic object-oriented programming languages. Since 1993, he has taught Spreadsheet Models for Managers, a course he devised, at the Harvard University Extension School. He serves as the facilitator and group administrator for a discussion group he created at LinkedIn.com: Office Politics, Workplace Politics and Organizational Politics. Discussions there are energetic and enlightening. The group now has nearly 700 members.
Mr. Brenner holds a Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering from MIT. He is a member of the National Speakers Association (NSA), the Boston Software Process Improvement Network, and the Agile Bazaar Chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery. He has served in various leadership roles ranging from board member to vice president to chair (president) in local chapters of these societies. He was selected Chapter Member of the Year for NSA New England in 2001 and 2007. His current interests focus on improving personal and organizational effectiveness in abnormal situations, such as dramatic change, enterprise emergencies, and high-pressure project environments.
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