Cracking the Political Code: 5 Ways to Spot Corporate Power Games

Fable Wealth - Sheldon Botes - Corporate Power Games


If you are a corporate professional, chances are you have come across at least one individual playing the political game to advance their careers or gain favour within an organisation. While not always easy to detect, there are several signs one can look out for. Here are five signs that someone may be engaged in political maneuvering

1. Lack of Transparency

Professionals who play the political game often withhold important information or manipulate it to suit their agenda. They may selectively share information with certain individuals or intentionally keep others in the dark. This lack of transparency can create an information imbalance, allowing them to control the narrative and gain an advantage.

2. Building Alliances & Factions

Politically inclined professionals tend to focus on building personal alliances and factions within the organisation. They may engage in behind-the-scenes conversations, networking, and lobbying efforts to gain support for their ideas or initiatives. They seek to align themselves with influential individuals who can help further their interests and consolidate their power base.

3. Manipulation and Power Plays

Corporate players often employ manipulative tactics to influence decision-making and outcomes. They may engage in subtle or overt power plays, such as spreading rumors, undermining colleagues, or taking credit for others’ work. They leverage their relationships, charisma, or positional authority to gain an upper hand and advance their own agenda.

4. Shifting Positions & Loyalties

Professionals involved in political games may quickly change their stance on issues or align themselves with different individuals based on what they perceive as beneficial to their own interests. This adaptability allows them to navigate complex organisational dynamics and maintain their influence.

5. Excessive Focus on Personal Ambition

While ambition is not necessarily negative, politically-driven executives often exhibit an excessive focus on personal gain and advancement. They may prioritise their own interests above those of the organisation and its stakeholders. Their decision-making and actions tend to be driven by personal ambition rather than the long-term success and well-being of the company.


Corporate politics can have a detrimental effect on organisations. To counter these, individuals should prioritise transparency, open communication, and ethical behavior. By fostering a culture of transparency, fairness, and integrity, individuals and organizations can mitigate the negative effects of corporate politics and cultivate a healthy and productive work environment.

Disclaimer: This post has been designed for educational purposes only and provides a simplified view of the topic. Any information herein is not intended nor does it constitute financial, tax, legal, investment, or other advice. Before making any decision or taking any action regarding your finances, you should consult a qualified Financial Adviser.

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