Power: Why Some People Have It—and Others Don't

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Harper Collins, Sep 14, 2010 - Business & Economics - 288 pages
6 Reviews

In this crowning achievement, one of the greatest minds in management theory reveals how to succeed and wield power in the real world.

Over decades of consulting with corporations and teaching MBA students the nuances of organizational power, Jeffrey Pfeffer has watched numerous people suffer career reversals even as others prevail despite the odds.

Our most common mistake is not having a realistic understanding of what makes some people more successful than others. By believing that life is fair, we tend to subscribe to the “just-world phenomenon,” which leaves us unprepared for the challenges and competition of the real world.

Now Pfeffer brings decades of his incredible insights to a wider audience. Brimming with counterintuitive advice, numerous examples from various countries, and surprising findings based on his research, this groundbreaking guide reveals the strategies and tactics that separate the winners from the losers. Power, he argues, is a force that can be used and harnessed not only for individual gain but also for the benefit of organizations and society. Power, however, is not something that can be learned from those in charge—their advice often puts a rosy spin on their ascent and focuses on what should have worked, rather than what actually did. Instead, Pfeffer reveals the true paths to power and career success. Iconoclastic and grounded in the realpolitik of human interaction, Power is an essential organizational survival manual and a new standard in the field of leadership and management.


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Review: Power: Why Some People Have it and Others Don't

User Review  - Goodreads

Glad I read this book instead of taking his class. Has interesting insights, but can't get past what feels at times like the author arguing it's ok to stab others in the back because most are likely looking to do it to you. Read full review

Review: Power: Why Some People Have it and Others Don't

User Review  - Goodreads

Similar to "48 laws of power" and "What got you here won't get you there". Keywords: reputation, just world fallacy, networking, weak ties, media exposure, cost of power, beware the leadership literature. Read full review


Be Prepared for Power
It Takes More Than Performance
The Personal Qualities That Bring Influence
Choosing Where to Start
Standing Out and Breaking Some Rules
Creating Resources
Building Efficient and Effective Social Networks
Acting and Speaking with Power
The Price of Power
Howand Why People Lose Power
Good for Organizations Good for You?
Its Easier Than You Think
For Further Reading and Learning

Perception Is Reality
Overcoming Opposition and Setbacks

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About the author (2010)

Jeffrey Pfeffer is the Thomas D. Dee II Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, where he has taught since 1979. He is the author or coauthor of thirteen books, and has also held visiting professorships at the Harvard Business School, London Business School, IESE Business School in Spain, and other institutions.

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