The exercise of power is not something that solely belongs to the realm of government. One could argue that nearly all organizations are prone to power games. Daily examples abound: someone took undue credit for your ideas; you were next in line for a promotion, but a colleague with less experience got the position instead; an unexpected project failure leads to widespread scapegoating; another department was able to persuade top executives to increase their funding at the expense of your own; a company merger brings up the possibility of downsizing in your division and colleagues suddenly start acting aggressively.
Why do people get involved in power games? How can we aspire to deal with them? I will attempt to answer these questions in the following article. We start by examining some classical theories of human nature.