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For public electric utilities, see Public utility. According to French and Raven, power must be distinguished from influence in sociology dissertation following way: power is that state of affairs which holds in a given relationship, A-B, such that a given influence attempt by A over B makes A’s desired change in B more likely. French and Raven argue that there are five significant categories of such qualities, while not excluding other minor categories.
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Gareth Morgan in his 1986 book, Images of Organization. Also called «positional power,» it is the power of an individual because of the relative position and duties of the holder of the position within an organization. Legitimate power is formal authority delegated to the holder of the position. It is usually accompanied by various attributes of power such as a uniform, a title, or an imposing physical office. Referent power is the power or ability of individuals to attract others and build loyalty. It is based on the charisma and interpersonal skills of the power holder.
A person may be admired because of specific personal trait, and this admiration creates the opportunity for interpersonal influence. Expert power is an individual’s power deriving from the skills or expertise of the person and the organization’s needs for those skills and expertise. Unlike the others, this type of power is usually highly specific and limited to the particular area in which the expert is trained and qualified. Reward power depends on the ability of the power wielder to confer valued material rewards, it refers to the degree to which the individual can give others a reward of some kind such as benefits, time off, desired gifts, promotions or increases in pay or responsibility. This power is obvious but also ineffective if abused. Coercive power is the application of negative influences. It includes the ability to demote or to withhold other rewards.
The desire for valued rewards or the fear of having them withheld that ensures the obedience of those under power. Coercive power tends to be the most obvious but least effective form of power as it builds resentment and resistance from the people who experience it. Power as a Perception: Power is a perception in a sense that some people can have objective power, but still have trouble influencing others. People who use power cues and act powerfully and proactively tend to be perceived as powerful by others.
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