Corporate politics are a drag on innovation and employee engagement. Too many managers are worried about not rocking the boat or aligning themselves with the right corporate officer to ensure their organizational ascension. More emphasis needs to be placed on a culture of trust in our workplaces.
I watched my boss accomplish nothing today. It's not that he wasn't exceptionally busy on several conference calls, sending out frantic emails and meeting with counterparts and others in our organization. He was dealing with the soul-crushing phenomenon of corporate politics.
Corporate politics are all about who is right. It has nothing to do with making your business better, more able to adapt to the hyper-competitive business environment or an excellent place to spend your creative energy. In fact, dealing with egos and agendas has the exact opposite effect.
By the time I was able to catch up with my boss at lunch, he confessed to being mentally exhausted already and the day wasn’t even half-way over. Furthermore, he hadn’t touched the long list of items that awaited his attention and that will demand his effort regardless of how much time he spends navigating the murky waters of corporate politics.
From culture to hiring practices, organizations need to develop leaders are confident without attitude. This will foster a workplace free of politics that stifle innovation make for unpleasant places to work.
Too many workplaces are full of middle management that seeks to maintain the status quo so as not to jeopardize the piece of the corporate pie. Many organizations implicitly reward this type of behavior by focusing on who is right, rather than what is right.
Current methods of compensation result in rewarding political strategists within the corporation. Align compensation to innovation and how well a leader develops others within his or her sphere of influence in the organization.