If cliques are damaging to an organization,
there should be no doubt they are damaging to Blissfield. It’s important to distinguish between a group and a clique. A group is generally composed of individuals that are drawn together by commonalities (normal human behavior), they are a positive experience for members. Cliques assemble for the same reasons but, include a more devious or sinister component, they consider themselves better than anybody else (elitist) and further subscribe to exclusivity.
Our Blissfield clique is even more underhanded than that, being substantially more
injurious to our community. Our clique – which I’ve tagged the F-group, I’m changing this slightly upon suggestion to F-troop, because it just rolls off the tongue easier. The F-troop has also been centralizing power by strategically positioning their members through elections and appointments in our government for influential purposes and capitalization from that influence.
I’ve witnessed firsthand, as have many in the community that this troop is malicious and vindictive against those who oppose their views or are deemed a threat against their agenda. All others who feel unsafe to speak out in the community, or feel they have a target on their back, are fully aware repercussions are expected from disagreement. Some overt tactics used are ridicule, name calling, demeaning and minimizing others. But, make no mistake there’s also covert (underground), subversive schemes being employed that serve to sabotage non-elitists. You can read about some I’ve experienced throughout my posts, providing other’s examples would simply be putting individuals in harm’s way.
Using tactics to coerce community members into submission, silence and/or compliance is alarming. Operating thusly is evidence the F-troop’s sincerity about the betterment of the community is indeed false – a grand ploy. If you have any doubts, try opposing them. Misconception from all those outsiders is counted on to perpetuate their “good for the community” operating cover. Do not be fooled. Their concern only extends as far as the boundaries of their group. That’s not to say benefits from their self promotional endeavors can’t spill over into the rest of the community, I believe it’s unavoidable. The gangrenous erosion this group causes far overshadows some fleeting, random or short-lived advantage, spilled by wayward precepts. Honestly evaluate this dilemma and consider this gravely important but simple question as you do; if intimidation has to be used, how honorable, just or good is their cause?
If the previous question doesn’t bring you to the truth, consider this – just as the clique ostracize wannabe members, the clique also decides who should get “run out-of-town”. T. Saxton-Jones introduced him/herself to the blog with activity skirting dangerously close to internet harassment. Saxton attempted to post the same lengthy comment over and over again, posting this comment over 20 times as well as sending it a few times as emails. On top of that, he/she also posted 15 other comments filled with foul language and rage – all within a 24 hour period. Saxton repeatedly demanded I leave town. I didn’t detect a desire or capacity for honest and intelligent debate, I saw the quintessential F-trooper. Running people out-of-town (I know it’s happened too many times before) instead of valuing and working with opposing points of view doesn’t sound very grown up or intelligent to me. It smacks of corruption and/or – protection thereof.
However, Saxton should have known I’m not easily intimidated. I have nothing to hide, I have nothing too important they can take away, I don’t break the law, I don’t have a brick and mortar business they can ruin…I have nothing to lose, all of which situate me perfectly to speak out. I wonder why Kay Brown didn’t advise Saxton, she was given this information, I know because I’m the one who told her. I’m also a “buck stops with me” kind of person – not to mention, I also get really irritated when someone tries to manipulate me.
Do you think I’m surprised the clique is outraged by the blog and wants it shut down? I knew going in they would protect what they’ve carefully built. Who knows the extent they’ll try to get that done. As long as the F-troop is destroying the community, this blog will be calling attention to them. In the end I’ve stood for the prosperity of a community, not for the prosperity of a few. Cliques don’t belong in any community; they don’t belong in the workplace or even the classroom. God help the people who have to deal with them.
Clip the Cliques
Cliques are everywhere. You know them; that little group of people who promote themselves and put everyone else down. Cliques in the workplace breed an unhealthy atmosphere that you must avoid at all costs if you want to manage job stress. Focus your attention daily on your job responsibilities. Nail your job. Make that your primary focus and don’t waste time trying to fit into a group. You’re being paid to perform a job. Be friendly and courteous to all, but skip the coffee clique. You’ll be amazed at how much this reduces job stress.
Leaders Discourage Cliques
My business is built on helping organizations build higher levels of trust. One significant trust buster that is evident, even in the best organizations, is the presence of cliques. These informal groups continuously drain the trust from the larger organization by fostering a culture of exclusivity. Since joining together with like-minded people has been human nature back to the “Clan of the Cave Bear,” how can an organization reduce the negative impact of these insular cells?
It is a function of leadership to set the tone of any culture. If leaders either condone cliques or encourage them by participating in them, the cells will continue to enjoy their exclusivity at the expense of the larger organization. The conundrum is that cliques are highly prized by the people in them. The support structure allows all members to poke fun at others who are outside the fence and create their own set of norms. This builds in a kind of polarization that is as uncomfortable to the outsiders as it is gratifying to the elite.
Organizational behavior scientists have identified five basic types of power managers and leaders use to influence their subordinates: reward, coercive, legitimate, referent, and expert.
Reward power, which is based on an individual’s expectation of receiving desired outcomes, was found to be a positive force. However, if the members of a group do not believe they will be rewarded for their efforts, the person in a position to offer rewards will not be able to influence the individuals. Similarly, managers who rely on coercive power, which is based on fear, will probably be unable to influence workers, especially group members, for a long period of time.
The other three types of power also have advantages and disadvantages. For instance, legitimate power, which exists as part of a manager’s position in the hierarchy, is often ignored by workers who do not respect the individual filling the role. Referent power, which is based on the manager’s charisma, influences only those individuals or group members who are swayed by the charismatic leader. Finally, expert power, which is power acquired from experience and learning, is a positive force, but only to the degree managers can convince individuals and group members that their leadership skills go beyond expertise alone.
People attempting to exercise power in the organization often resort to political tactics to do so. They blame others for mistakes, form power coalitions, praise co-workers and subordinates when they think it will help them achieve goals and reinforce their images. In short, they use every stratagem possible to win friends and influence people. In the process, however, they often create conflict. This prompted researchers to study conflict and its possible solutions.
Organizational behavior scientists recognize that conflict exists at both the individual and group levels. They have devised a number of ways to deal with it. Among them are mutual problem solving, compromise, and avoidance. Significantly, they discovered that conflict resolutions are most often temporary, and they have looked for ways to make them more permanent. In order to find permanent solutions, they have performed more in-depth studies of organizational structure and processes and how both affect individuals and groups.
Read more: Organizational Behavior – benefits http://www.referenceforbusiness.com/encyclopedia/Oli-Per/Organizational-Behavior.html#ixzz1Cv5aK1s6
Here’s a Permanent Solution
Individuals that are plugged in need to recognize when they are being worked (manipulated) and show intolerance to the perpetrators.
Working for the community means fostering positive relationships with all – with local business owners – with everyone equally, not with partiality for those in a special network while feuding with or condemning others. Community building means building a quality, productive business environment. A friendly, welcoming atmosphere needs to be established for the health and well-being of all residents that live here and encourage aspirations from outsiders to live here.
Take your community back!
Stop electing them into your government. Complain if they get appointed. Do not facilitate selfishness and greed, because when push comes to shove, in the very face of necessity – we have to stand together and depend on each other. Do not wait for zero hour, when we need it most to come to that realization. If you want decency – demand it. Hold the bar steady, let them rise to your standards, don’t lower to theirs.