Surviving Corporate Politics

Comments (20)


Surviving Corporate Politics

By: Gary Whittaker

Opportunities Are Made, Not Created

In the business of corporate politics, one thing has become very clear: Most business decisions are grown from the grassroots level. Sure, it may all seem likes it's coming from corporate HQ, with announcements and presentations that have their organisations in perpetual flux, but make no mistake about it, most of those decisions have been influenced by lobbyists in the lower levels. The bigger the organization, the harder it may be to see, but that does not make it any less relevant, only more difficult to find. Executives do not know enough about the true inner workings of a company to be able to form a strategic plan capable of reaching the lower levels of business. Executives rely heavily on input from ladder seekers within their own organisations on which they build their business cases.

How can the everyday negro (or lower level manager) take advantage? The easiest way is by following the old adage, "Necessity is the mother of invention". I can't tell you how many positions and even whole departments have been created based on creative folks jumping in to take on gapped responsibilities that other teams have shirked due to lack of funding or inadequate training. If managed properly, stepping up to meet corporate deficiencies can lead to influencing corporate decisions. How so? Advertising works! Never step up to addressing a problem without due recognition for it once it has been resolved. A great example would be to send out a broadcast email congratulating everyone for a great effort resolving the issue. Identify which actions were taken by what group, and what the resulting positive impacts where in terms of improved financial numbers, lowered costs of doing business and/or increased employee/customer satisfaction. Make sure to not only send this out to all the people within your organisation that were involved, but to their bosses as well. You would now have succeeded in improving your own image by enhancing those around you that is subtle enough to get score you points, and keeps folks happy about working with you at the same time.

Opportunities are easy to come by. They are stated at meetings, identified in corporate memo's, or spoken about in various work related social gatherings. Follow up a complaint from a colleague with more questions as to the details of the issue. Find out their take on the source of the problem, who or what is the cause, and what measures they have implemented as a work around. History about the issue(s) can also be learned by asking casual questions as to how many other departments or customers are affected, and for how long, as well as finding out who has been implicated in the past. Take the information learned back into your own team and try and find solutions that are mutually advantageous. Some teams may feel like you are stepping into 'their' territory, but that can usually be countered with the simple argument that taking away problem issues will lead to improved efficiencies in their remaining tasks. You must always remain in partnership with the departments with which you are working. The business world has been getting smaller and smaller. Cases were Executives have lost and taken back over specific teams multiple times over the course of only a few years is becoming a common occurrence. If you try to start empire building, you had better succeed, otherwise you will be forever branded, and no one will help you. It is not a good deal in the long run. People used to be able to jump companies and start again, but acquisitions, take-overs and turn-over rates can put you back in reporting position to someone with which you are no longer are on good terms.

Most important of all, take the new Adidas motto, "Impossible is Nothing". How many people believed the United States was unbreakable before September 11th? How many people believed the Red Sox would be forever cursed? How many people thought that Nortel would be a Blue Chip and not go into a sudden nose dive? Impossible simply means that a solution has not been successfully implemented yet. Use the resources at your disposal, be it colleagues, friends, web tools, whatever, and put together your plan in a way that will turn your boss' head and earn his approval. If you know that your boss will not be receptive to your plans in advance, then plan for it it a non-confrontational way. Set up a meeting after you have gathered all your supporters. Try and get other people at his level that believe in the benefits of your objectives and get a meeting all together. Propose your plans in a team setting so that it does not just pit you against your boss.

Make it happen.

How can the everyday negro (or lower level manager) take advantage? The easiest way is by following the old adage, "Necessity is the mother of invention". I can't tell you how many positions and even whole departments have been created based on creative folks jumping in to take on gapped responsibilities that other teams have shirked due to lack of funding or inadequate training. If managed properly, stepping up to meet corporate deficiencies can lead to influencing corporate decisions. How so? Advertising works! Never step up to addressing a problem without due recognition for it once it has been resolved. A great example would be to send out a broadcast email congratulating everyone for a great effort resolving the issue. Identify which actions were taken by what group, and what the resulting positive impacts where in terms of improved financial numbers, lowered costs of doing business and/or increased employee/customer satisfaction. Make sure to not only send this out to all the people within your organisation that were involved, but to their bosses as well. You would now have succeeded in improving your own image by enhancing those around you that is subtle enough to get score you points, and keeps folks happy about working with you at the same time.

Opportunities are easy to come by. They are stated at meetings, identified in corporate memo's, or spoken about in various work related social gatherings. Follow up a complaint from a colleague with more questions as to the details of the issue. Find out their take on the source of the problem, who or what is the cause, and what measures they have implemented as a work around. History about the issue(s) can also be learned by asking casual questions as to how many other departments or customers are affected, and for how long, as well as finding out who has been implicated in the past. Take the information learned back into your own team and try and find solutions that are mutually advantageous. Some teams may feel like you are stepping into 'their' territory, but that can usually be countered with the simple argument that taking away problem issues will lead to improved efficiencies in their remaining tasks. You must always remain in partnership with the departments with which you are working. The business world has been getting smaller and smaller. Cases were Executives have lost and taken back over specific teams multiple times over the course of only a few years is becoming a common occurrence. If you try to start empire building, you had better succeed, otherwise you will be forever branded, and no one will help you. It is not a good deal in the long run. People used to be able to jump companies and start again, but acquisitions, take-overs and turn-over rates can put you back in reporting position to someone with which you are no longer are on good terms.

Most important of all, take the new Adidas motto, "Impossible is Nothing". How many people believed the United States was unbreakable before September 11th? How many people believed the Red Sox would be forever cursed? How many people thought that Nortel would be a Blue Chip and not go into a sudden nose dive? Impossible simply means that a solution has not been successfully implemented yet. Use the resources at your disposal, be it colleagues, friends, web tools, whatever, and put together your plan in a way that will turn your boss' head and earn his approval. If you know that your boss will not be receptive to your plans in advance, then plan for it it a non-confrontational way. Set up a meeting after you have gathered all your supporters. Try and get other people at his level that believe in the benefits of your objectives and get a meeting all together. Propose your plans in a team setting so that it does not just pit you against your boss.

Make it happen.

About The Author

Gary Whittaker is the editor of tenwebzine.com, a social and sports commentary webzine with balls! Check out more articles at http://www.tenwebzine.com.

editor@tenwebzine.com

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Comments

Nunya K 15.11.2008. 15:26

What is executive management of corporate America sacrificing for the benefit of their companies and employees? Ten million people out of work and growing. Consumer spending dropped last month more than it has ever dropped. Home foreclosures at record highs and the economic outlook going forward is nothing but doom and gloom.

Just like in politics, why does the executive level management only seem to be concerned about getting bailout money and their bonuses and how taking that bailout money will affect them?

Nunya K

Admin 15.11.2008. 15:26

Certainly the problems of corporate America and the problems caused by corporate America has started at the very top.

Greed, corruption, competition, stock holder expectations, need to achieve forecasts, have all played a negative part in what corporate America has become.

The mind set of corporate executives is truly a mystery to most people. The ungodliness that over takes this element and it's own quest for riches has been written in the scriptures over the centuries, yet it still prevails. Those who are elected to protect the people are themselves tainted by the corruption and greed by allowing laws to pass they know will benefit the executive class and deny the people.

AIG is the recipient of government bailout, and their appreciation and gratitude is reflected in how they responded. They turned around and had an all expense paid, week long party, at one of the country's more pricey resorts. They even took precautions on keeping it low key, so as not to alert the media, but to no avail ! They were caught with their pants down and the world became even more aware of their terrible indiscretions !

To do any less than fire this complete layer of management would be unjust. This scum needs to be made example of, yet capitalism needs to survive, but not at the cost turning our backs on this scum that first caused much of the financial crises and then benefited by it.

The politicians who supported this crises and in general allow corporate America to abuse the laws, must themselves be punished. At the very least, any and all elected positions in all levels of government, should be subject to recall !

Admin

The Contentious Otter 07.10.2012. 18:27

How long until the Republican Party divides? It's clear that the Republican Party consists of two primary sects. There are the pro-business Romney Republicans who represent the interests of corporate America, then there are "Christian-Socialist" Republicans who hate Wall Street.

How long do you think it will be until the Conservative Christian/White Nationalist second of the Republican Party splits away to form a "Christian Socialist" party?

The Contentious Otter

Admin 07.10.2012. 18:27

i think the party will morph from its current outlook. if that happens before 2016, it will still be a force in politics. if it continues in the same path in 2016, then a split instead of a reform is more likely. neither surviving part will be competent to field a national candidate again.

Admin

¢??? ?????? 10.01.2013. 09:06

Why is it acceptable to demonise a growing ideology in the UK? The UK claim to be tolerant of all beliefs and ideologies but clearly this tolerance has a condition that your ideology must bend to our societies will otherwise its not tolerated at all. That's hardly tolerant.

This growing ideology is a perfectly rational and justified belief system that is quite possibly a direct consequence of the draconian surveillance police state that the UK is fast turning into.

A growing number of people are realizing that they have been born into a very unfair greed-based society of consumers that is favored to people of class and privilege. They realize they've been born into a system that they have no choice over except the illusion of left or right politics. Its a system that could be seen as a labour camp of control to someone who comprehends real freedom. Its a society where each of us are indoctrinated to think a certain way from an early age all the way up to our late teens, then we are all expected to provide our labour for the majority of our waking adult life, right through our prime years and whats even worse is, most people actually hate the job they have but they still choose to do it.
Its a society that is mostly managed through psychological mind-control where the TV set in every home tells people how to think and behave as well as the latest consumer item we should each be striving towards to make us a better citizen and a more successful consumer. Most people have been so brainwashed by this consumer lifestyle their life is literally dominated by corporate logos which they worship like a religion and display with pride.

Its literally like a horror story and its increasingly getting worse and worse by the day.
The people who see society in this way are trapped because everywhere is becoming the same so there's no escape from it. The best they can do is refuse to participate as a consumer and choose not to provide labour in exchange for life. For the time being in the UK, its possible to survive without participating thanks to the benefits system but this comes with constant level of abuse from the media manipulated public who don't understand your beliefs or tolerate it so they call you a scrounger and a lazy person if your lucky.

As I said, a growing number of people are starting to see society in this way so should the UK accommodate such beliefs and be tolerant of them because after all, a society that claims to be tolerant of all PEACEFUL beliefs shouldn't be able to add conditions because that totally defeats the purpose of it.

I'd also like to hear your opinion if you think this way also. Do you think its okay to have to provide so much labour to survive and support the Industrial world when nature used to provide for free.

¢??? ??????

Admin 10.01.2013. 09:06

thats too deep ... But all i can say is that humanity is very rare these days ..

Admin

flygrl16 02.01.2007. 18:34

How shady is the corporate world; your boss-if they are shady? Well, I have heard plenty of "the coporate world is full of to many arrogant people; jerks-big egos that think that you should know their name", and I have also heard that most of the time they're are some shady people in have to go through in order to get your big break-that including your boss and politics is something you have to learn to stand or you won't survive-cut it. Is the coporate world that bad to work in?

flygrl16

Admin 02.01.2007. 18:34

its all about ethics
most companies are ok

Admin

Crazy Conspiracy Theorist 17.07.2009. 15:33

Why do most Americans equate right leaning politics with fascism? Historically the vast majority of fascist governments have been socialist. Is this a case of history repeating itself?
Cardinal - Thanks. You said exactly what I was going to say. Big government, heavy taxes, control of business, etc. Sounds more like the left in this country to me.

Crazy Conspiracy Theorist

Admin 17.07.2009. 15:33

Because most Americans are too stupid to look up the definition...and here it is.

Fascism, pronounced /?fæ??z?m/, comprises a radical and authoritarian nationalist political ideology[1][2][3][4] and a corporatist economic ideology. [5]

Fascists believe that nations and/or races are in perpetual conflict whereby only the strong can survive by being healthy, vital, and by asserting themselves in conflict against the weak.[6] Fascists advocate the creation of a single-party state.[7] Fascist governments forbid and suppress criticism and opposition to the government and the fascist movement.[8] Fascism opposes class conflict, blames capitalist liberal democracies for its creation and communists for exploiting the concept.[9] Fascism is much defined by what it opposes, what scholars call the fascist negations - its opposition to individualism,[10] rationalism, liberalism, conservatism and communism. [11] In the economic sphere, many fascist leaders have claimed to support a "Third Way" in economic policy, which they believed superior to both the rampant individualism of unrestrained capitalism and the severe control of state communism.[12][13] This was to be achieved by a form of government control over business and labour (called "the corporate state" by Mussolini).[14][15] No common and concise definition exists for fascism and historians and political scientists disagree on what should be in any concise definition.[16]

Following the defeat of the Axis powers in World War II and the publicity surrounding the atrocities committed during the period of fascist governments, the term fascist has been used as a pejorative word.

Admin

bo 11.09.2008. 00:08

Should you open a business or start a career? im in my late highschool years. and trying to figure out what is best.
i would LOVE to start a business and see it grow.. and then later plan opening up more. and get a long chain going.
like a coffee shop!

i want to do something that i can get alot of moeny from. and have alot of off time.so maybe i can spend time with a future family!

what should i do?

bo

Admin 11.09.2008. 00:08

If you are looking for a lot of free time to do things you don't want to go into business for yourself.

Most prosperous business people got that way by starting off small, working 60 or more hours per week at their place of business and quite a bit of time spent at home doing bookkeeping, keeping up with industry trends and thinking about ways to improve the business. If you do everything right you can expect to become truly prosperous in about ten years or so. From that point on you have to worry about becoming complacent because there is always some gal or guy who is just starting out who will eat your lunch if you don't hustle to stay ahead.

On the other hand you can go to college and then become a corporate drone with a false sense of job security working 40 hours a week and, if you survive the office politics, retire in your late 60s with a company pension and social security.

The choice is yours

Hope this helps
Jerry-the-bookkeeper

Admin

Ryan H 27.05.2009. 18:20

What's the difference between left-wing and right-wing parties? Array

Ryan H

Admin 27.05.2009. 18:20

Know that just like Fascist Nazis, Republicans want a One party state ruled by the Military and corporate interests.
Fascism is a class form of anti-liberal nationalism. It manifested itself primarily in the form of an elite led party which when attempted to generate a populist mass movement through a ritual style of politics and a program of extreme policies which promised to overcome a threat posed by international socialism, to end the degeneration affecting the nation under liberalism, and to bring about a radical renewal of its social, political and cultural life as part of what was widely imagined to be the new era being inaugurated in Western civilization.
Fascism is comprised with a radical and authoritarian nationalist political ideology and a corporatist economic ideology. Fascists advocate the creation of a single-party state. Fascists believe that nations and/or races are in perpetual conflict whereby only the strong can survive by being healthy, vital, and by asserting themselves in physical or verbal combat against who they conceive as the weak.
Fascist governments forbid and suppress criticism and opposition to the government and the movement. Fascism opposes class conflict and blames capitalist liberal democracies for creating class conflict and in turn blames liberal ideas as exploiting class conflict.
The basic myth of fascism which conditions its ideology, propaganda, style of politics and actions is the vision of the nation's imminent rebirth from decadence. Fascism is a form of political behavior marked by obsessive preoccupation with community decline, humiliation or victimizing and by compensatory cults of unity, energy and purity. Is working in uneasy but effective collaboration with traditional elites, abandons democratic liberties and pursues with redemptive violence and without ethical or legal restraints goals of internal cleansing and external expansion.

Admin

Dastardly 12.06.2009. 18:48

Can modern technology solve the problems of congressional representative corruption? The house and senate are made up of people who represent the interests of huge numbers of people. They are elected by their districts and supposedly represent their interests. The lobbyists increasingly get in the way of this representation by quid pro quos for campaign contributions so that representatives don't necessarily represent their constituents but instead the deep pockets group funding their campaigns.

Can't we remove the middle man (lobbyists) by direct representation of the people? Nowadays people need not travel to DC to vote on bills this can all be done online.

Senators and representatives will still be needed to write and negotiate bills but the actual voting on these bills could be done directly by the citizens.

What do you think of this idea?

Dastardly

Admin 12.06.2009. 18:48

Yes, I'm generally very sympathetic to the idea of more direct democracy. However as an isolated measure this will do very little I'm afraid. The lobbyists could start "working" the people instead of the DC crowd and that might make the situation even wore than it is today as hard as that is to imagine.
These lobbies have enormous financial means and very big interests to defend and as is painfully obvious from their unprincipled spending pattern today ( fund both parties, give more to the guy who looks like he's gonna win and so on) that there's very little they wouldn't do to achieve their goals
I don't think ordinary citizens in this system, even with more direct democracy, are a match for the experienced power holders.
I believe this could only work if the role of money in politics and society in general is reduced. I also believe this requires a far more informed, educated citizenry that has income security.

In the world as it is corporations would and could buy votes to make legislation go their way and that's not even the fault of those who would sell their vote. If I work twelve hours in the factory, combine that with another job just to survive little time remains to study the issues. Most laws and regulations are complicated. The corporate lobbyists are smart enough to present the side of the argument they take as the reasonable and correct choice, they will not say we're after money and don't care about anything else, so any extra benefit they would potentially offer in exchange for my vote would be pure benefit.

People can not truly be expected to govern themselves freely as long as they have to worry about basic needs to survive

Admin

ohmygoshboy 03.11.2009. 01:20

What kind of research or what arguments can I use to back up this thesis of mine? Regardless of positive qualities that humans posses, their self serving thoughts and actions over power and cancel their positive qualities, thus causing them to be destructive not just to others but to society as a whole.

ohmygoshboy

Admin 03.11.2009. 01:20

That is true for some folks, but as a general theory not all individuals are victim to the condition you describe. On the primitive scale we all have a drive to survive, in today's society that translates to success. It is true though, with all the back stabbing and greed that breeds arrogance in some realms of society would support your thesis. Try politics and corporate ladder climbing.

Admin

K. Addison 13.04.2013. 02:11

Can I get a bachelors degree in business administration if I'm bad at math? I'm really good at dealing with people, strategy, politics, and communications but I'm not good at math. I'm a need a lot of finance, accounting, and business statistics to get the degree I'm interested in, Corporate Communications and technology option of Business administration. I plan to study like never before, for my math related classes like finance and accounting.

I'm simply, by trade or nature, not good at math. I need the business degree to help with a couple of companies I'm looking to develop too. Do you think it is possible for me to get a bachelors in business administration if I am not that good at math? I do other classes well. Perhaps, I will change my focus of study to human resources or something for my bachelors, if I need to. Do you think I could get a business bachelors degree if I'm not that good at math? I already have like 50 credits toward the associates degree, so I'm not really wanting to change my whole degree.

K. Addison

Admin 13.04.2013. 02:11

Yes, you will just need to make those math classes a priority. You should seek a tutor at the beginning of the semester when you are taking math classes. It will help you out greatly!! You *have* to take them if you want that degree and I feel that it is worth it. I suck at math as well and I am obtaining a business degree, it's only 3-4 math classes, so I'll survive. You can survive too. They may be hard, but people bad at math can make it through if they seek help!

Admin

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