What is mean by power? Based on Stephens Robbins and Timothy Judge, power is about the ability of one individual to influence the behaviour of the other. According to Oxford Dictionary, power is the ability or capacity to do something or act in a particular way and the other meaning, the capacity or ability to direct or influence the behaviour of others or the course of events. Through these two definitions, power is about to influence or dominate people to do something for an event. In short, power is the capability to influence or change the development.
There are two types of power, namely formal (positioned-based) and personal (person-based). Formal power can be defined as an individual’s position in an organization. Four categories can be founded in this type of power, namely coercive power, reward power, legitimate power and information power. As for personal power, it’s about a person exercises power derived from their unique individual characteristics. Expert power and referent power are the categories of the this type of power.
As for today, I just want to focus to one type of power, which is personal power. What is personal power? Personal power as been defined above, the person don’t have to influence of others but it’s a self-assertion, represent a movement to self-realization and transcendent goals in one person life. Sometimes, we often to misunderstood about this type of power because when we heard the word “power”, we always think about dominance, to control and authority. But personal power, it’s about our inner self power that influence ourselves to be more positive person. In other word, it’s all about the person attitude or state of mind without any attempt to control others as to be a better person.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PERSONAL POWER
After understood the definition the personal power itself, why this type of power is really important to us? How we can reclaim our own personal power? As we know, personal power is related to our self-assertion. We need to know it is our inner power are in positive or not because if it’s not, it will make ourselves seems powerlessness.
Based on Neale (2015), there are three senses of personal power. First sense is self worth. In sense of good self worth of personal power, we as a person need to be like about ourselves, value about ourselves and accept who we are. Through this sense, we can improve our self confidence. Second senses are respect for others. In these sense, it’s about not to blame and focus about what’s wrong the people surround us, but it’s about how we shows our respect to others with listen to their opinion and respect towards the seniors. Last but not least, the third senses are self-fulfilling prophecy. In these third senses, it about our believe that we the one whom create or in charge of our destiny, not people that order to follow their way.
Besides that, Friedman (2015) said that the personal power is important as it work to who we are and when we want to develop our personal strength and power as we know about ourselves. She also said that we must not tolerate with our egos because an ego is not the truth. If we accept and understand our talent and ability is the truth and we can get our points across with honesty. The utilization of humor in work can reduce tense circumstances, and it can break the ice in awkward situations.
So, now we know the importance of personal power to our daily life based on these two perception.
CONCEPTUAL AND OPERATIONAL OF PERSONAL POWER
In introduction of this assessment, I have defined the category of personal power which that have been divided into two categories. First category is refer to referent power and second categories are expert power. Referent power can be define as the ability of a leader to influence a follower because of the loyalty, respect, friendship, admiration o a desire to gain approval from the follower itself. As for expert power, a person who obtains special skills or expert in certain areas allows to be in control.
What the characteristics of personal power can be found in ourselves? Based on Burton (2014), he said that there are five characteristics of personal power that we can found in ourselves. First characteristic is patience. A person who being patience, they will keep things in perspective, embrace the process and allow things to evolve. The person will never fear failure. Second characteristics are ownership. A person who have this characteristic, they take the responsibility for their choices, decisions and actions. They also will operate their work with a bottom line mentality. Third characteristics are wisdom. An individual will make informed decisions based on first observation and results. They also been dying for knowledge and possess a keen willingness to learn. Forth characteristics are emotional intelligence. This refers to an individual that can manage their emotions and also explore to understand the emotions of others as they want to be empathetic. The decision making that they make are based on information and not derived by their own or others emotions. Last but not least, the fifth characteristics are respect. An individual respect themselves and others as they treat all people surround them with dignity and respect. They also respect others different points of view.
SCOPE AND TERMS OF REFERENCES PERSONAL POWER
From definition, importance, conceptual and operational of this personal power, we can see it through the scope by divide personal, power and personal power itself. These bring different definition as it have a different scope.
According to Merriam-Webster, personal is related to or affecting a particular person (private). Besides that, based on Oxford Dictionary, personal meant by an individual’s character, appearance, or private life in an inappropriate or offensive way. By these two definitions, we can see the scope that personal is about a particular person with his or her private life.
As for power, it can be define as the capacity or ability to direct or influence the behaviour of people or the course of situations based on Oxford Dictionary. Other that that, we could take the definition of power from Merriam-Webster that said power is the capacity for being act upon or undergoing an effect. Based these definitions, the scope can be seen as power are the capability of an individual in influence by its authority in his or her hand.
Personal power as we can see from definition, it is about an individual exercises the power derived from their unique individual characteristics or in other word, he or she don’t have to influence people surround them as they want to develop themselves to be a better person. So, the scope of personal power we can conclude that personal power is about our inner power to influence ourselves to be more effective and better person.
TEORY OF PERSONAL POWER
Personal power we could see from the social psychologists John French and Bertram Raven, as they have studied this phenomenon more than half a century ago. Their research help us to understand why some leaders are capable to influence us, how prepared we as we want to accept their power, and – if you are a leader – how you can develop new power bases to get the best from your followers.
French and Raven, they have developed five bases of power which that include for personal power as well in 1959. The five bases are legitimate, reward, expert, referent and coercive. Six years later, Raven added another base, namely informational. They have been categorized into two types, namely positional and personal. Now, we focus on personal type only.
Personal power have been divided into two, namely referent and expert power. As I have explained in conceptual and operational section, expert and referent are the categorizes that I have been searched. Expert power that been defined by these two social psychologists, when the individual have the knowledge and skill, it enable the person to understand the event happen surround him. As the person become knowledgeable, the followers will respect and obey to his or her order, in without any force, they respect their leader.
As for referent power, they found that this type of power comes from one person liking and respecting another, and identifying with her in some way. Referent power can be a huge responsibility to an individuate, because he or she don’t necessarily have to do anything to earn it. So, it can be abused quite easily.
SIMILARITIES, DIFFERENCES AND RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SOCIAL POWER AND PERSONAL POWER ANALYSIS
The similarity of these types of power is none. There are a lot of differences that been found.