Power style and gender

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According to Marx Weber, power is the ability to dominate events, other people, or resources in order to make things happen the way one wants them to happen in the face of opposition and resistance (Kenrick, D. T., Neuberg, S. L., & Cialdini, R. B. (2009). Personal power is defined as the authority and influence one has over others. Power styles that I present include coercive, rewarding, legitimizing, autocratic, and participative power. The ability to reward my followers after completing a task is referred to as reward power. Coercive authority refers to the ability to penalize or impose punishments on followers who violate the established norms and regulations.

Legitimate Power

Legitimate power occurs when your followers believe you have the power. Legitimate power occurs when your followers believe you have the power and the right to instruct them because of your position.

Autocratic Power

Autocratic power is the ability to make decisions without the influence and input of others,( G. R., & Sharbrough, W. C. (1996).

Participative Power

Participative power is the ability to engage followers in decision-making process but the final decision is done by the leader.

Power in the Family Context

In my family context, I use coercive, participative, reward, and legitimate power to my juniors. Use of coercive power occurs when I punish them because of misconduct and disobedience. Participative power is used when we have to make decisions on how to do things but after discussion I make the final decision. Legitimate power occurs because the siblings see me as their senior. Reward power is exercised when I have to appreciate my juniors for work well done. Women and men use power in different ways and hence ones gender and that of followers affects the use and level of power. Gender divides power in distribution thus inequalities( Oates, B. R., & Flores, D. (1995) resulting in conflict in the family as a result of following the gender that dominates, hence non-threatening responsibilities one can portray are undermined.


George, J. M., Jones, G. R., & Sharbrough, W. C. (1996). Understanding and managing organizational behavior. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

Kenrick, D. T., Neuberg, S. L., & Cialdini, R. B. (2009). Social Psychology: Unraveling the mystery. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.

Stanford, J. H., Oates, B. R., & Flores, D. (1995). Women's leadership styles: a heuristic analysis. Women in Management Review, 10(2), 9-16.

June 12, 2023

Government Life Science

Subject area:

Max Weber Power Theory

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