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Title: Vertrouwen en beïnvloedingstactieken. De rol van vertrouwen en beïnvloedingstactieken in het strategische conversatieproces tussen midden- en topmanagement
Authors: Oomen-Beeris, JHP
Keywords: trust
influencing tactics
middle managers
top management,
strategic conversation
political skills
political behaviour
Issue Date: 27-Aug-2013
Publisher: Open Universiteit Nederland
Abstract: ´Trust and influencing tactics, the role of trust and influencing tactics in the strategic conversation process between middle- and top management´ Keywords: trust, influencing tactics, influence, middle managers, top management, strategic conversation, political skills, political behaviour Middle managers can have an important contribution to organizational change, if they are allowed by top management to act in this role. The behaviour of top management affects both the influencing behaviour as well as the relation with and the trust of middle manager in top management. Being successful in influencing people is one of the most important factors that determine a managers´ effectiveness. In this research two research questions are answered: Which relation exists between the level of trust of the middle manager in top management and the use of influencing tactics in the strategic conversation process? Which relation exists between the use of effective influencing tactics and the actual influence that a middle manager has on the strategic conversation process? Based on a number of validated questionnaires a web survey was set up in order to investigate the above research questions. This was completed by 141 middle managers, of whom the majority works for Rabobank Netherlands. Although the found relations are weak, the outcomes might inspire further research to expand theory in this domain. The results indicate that the level of trust has a negative relation with the influencing tactic ´self-serving tactics´ and a positive relation with ´consultation´. Gender moderates both relationships. Next to this, relations were found between the subvariables of the construct ´trust´ and a number of influencing tactics. For integrity, a negative relation was found with coalition and self-serving tactics. For ability, a negative relation was found with exchange and self-serving tactics. For benevolence, a negative relation was found with self-serving tactics. For trust, a positive relation was found with consultation and rational persuasion, and a negative relation with self-serving tactics. On top of this, for certain relations moderation was found for gender, for the level of political skill and for Rabobank staff. With respect to the second research question results indicate that using effective influencing tactics do lead to an increased influence on the strategic conversation process. In order to assess this relationship, a new definition of ´result of influence´ has been defined, which has not been tested empirically yet. The most striking result in this research is that self-serving tactics is relevant in relation to trust, gender and political skills. The use of self-serving tactics increases when the distance between actual and desired influence is larger, and is more often used by male managers. Self serving behaviour puts the interests of the individual above the interests of the organization. This behaviour can become damaging to an organization as soon as these interest diverge. It is also interesting to see that men and women do not only have different preferences for influencing tactics, but that also the moderation in the relation between trust and influencing tactics is different. Next to this, certain influencing tactics which have been identified in literature as being effective, could partially be validated. Last, this research has used previously validated questionnaires. Most results confirm the external validity of these questionnaires. This research has resulted in a number of new connections and views, but further research is needed. Future research could investigate if ´self-serving tactics´ show indeed enough relevancy in order to be included in the common list of influencing tactics. The level of trust of the participating middle managers was already quite high. In order to make a better comparison it would be better to have one group of respondents with high trust and another, comparable group of middle managers that has low trust in top management. Also, the use and measurement of ´result of influence´ on a generic level needs further deepening of understanding.
Appears in Collections:MSc Management Science

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