you have what it takes to be a political success at work? Dr Brian Baxter,
senior partner, Kiddy and Partners offers you this chance to test yourself.
Give yourself one point for each question to which you can answer
"yes" then tot up the total and see our scoring guide below.
Ten indicators of a clear personal power-base
Have you unique/specialist/obscure, but very important technical knowledge which other people need from you?
Does everyone else in your team regard
you as a friend in whom they can confide?
Do you know something about your manager
that no-one else knows and s/he would rather it stayed that way?
Have you got a letter of another job
offer from a rival company, or regularly receive calls from head-hunters in
working hours – and your manager knows this?
Are you known to be related (however
distantly) to the Chairman/Chief
Executive of your organisation (and, even better, known to spend family
Do you have a more interesting
partner/house/car/social life/academic or career background than your manager –
and they know this?
In meetings, can you demonstrate a specific range of well managed facial expressions while your managers or others are
talking – i.e. eager sycophancy/polite interest/wry amusement/laconic
resignation/deep boredom/incredulous astonishment/white anger? – If you can do
all these simultaneously you get a special bonus point.
Do you adopt the moral high ground
and talk about people’s feelings and values when others are banging on about
facts and figures?
Are you able to acquire more workspace/better plants/nicer chair/window
view/more powerful computer than your peers?
Do the Directors/members of the Board know your name – or better still
actually stop and talk to you?
Ten indicators for effective power-through-knowledge-management skills
Do you know who to speak to privately to get the low-down on the Board’s latest decisions?
Can you get your hands on the senior
management’s monthly reports on the business – and know how to use them
without actually acknowledging that you’ve seen them?
Do you go outside to join the smokers/hang around vending machines/linger over
the photocopier to tap into the
Do you know the birthdays of
everyone around you?
Are you on everyone’s “copy to” internal
Do you operate a policy of selective,
even random, delivery of information to your colleagues/boss (give too much
information all the time and you bore your colleagues; give no information and
you become dispensable; infrequent gems keeps them wanting more)?
Do people come to you for inside information before they go to your boss
(or even after they’ve been to your boss)?
Do you use (selectively) up to date management jargon and can reference two
or three important but obscure management gurus to name drop at key points in
Are you able to appear to talk knowledgeably yet discreetly about the
latest activities of your competitors/customers/suppliers?
Do other teams/departments in your company invite you – and only you – to sit
in on their meetings to benefit them with your knowledge and wisdom?
points: You are a Member of Parliament with a day job in business
points: Brilliant – you are a Machiavelli among the masses
points: Pretty good – you’ll survive
point: Are you spending too much time working?
than 5 points: You probably have a personal hygiene problem.