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Sanctioned acceptance of both principals and agents is also rooted in a form of trust that is beyond the purview of an explicit contracts framework. —D. Carpenter & G. A. Krause, Transactional Authority and Bureaucratic Politics (2015) A fundamental tenet of the administrative presidency has been that careerists cannot be trusted to be responsive to presidential policy agendas. And while it is typically claimed that applying the tools of the administrative presidency is motivated by distrust of careerists to carry out those agendas faithfully, no research exists on the extent to which applying the tools may foster a reciprocal distrust, or diminished trust, of political appointees among careerists themselves. This reciprocated distrust may, in turn, reduce the ability of the strategy to advance presidential policy goals in more subtle ways than the overt exit or voice of career employees (Golden, 2000). Both exit and voice may be conceptualized better as multidimensional constructs that fall along a continuum of acquiescent-to-defensive-to-­ prosocial behaviors (Dyne, Ang, & Botero, 2003). Acquiescent voice, or silence , may equate to routinized and passive responsiveness. This may look like loyalty, but it can effectively limit the ability of a president and his­appointees to exploit institutional competence, wield administrative power, and aggressively pursue a positive policy agenda. This is especially true when presidents and their emissaries are trying to make things happen rather than merely stop things from happening, as was the case in many areas of George W. Bush’s “big government conservatism” (Barnes, 2003). 2 Trust, Intellectual Capital, and the Administrative Presidency 40 Rethinking the Administrative Presidency As one (self-identified liberal) career Senior Executive Service (SES) member described his relationship with Bush appointees at the Department of Education: “What’s my alternative? I know who I work for. I understand that. I’m an adult. And so let’s make this as pleasant as we can.”10 Although some research identifies trust as a critical factor in appointee -careerist relations for facilitating openness and innovation (Heclo, 1977; Michaels, 1997; Pfiffner, 1991a), studies of the administrative presidency often fail to define the concept of trust or systematically examine its connection to organizational outcomes. Nor, more generally in the governance literature in public administration and public management, can one find ways in which this concept has been imported into studies of the administrative presidency. Similarly unhelpful is literature in the generic management scholarship; little exists in the way of studies on trust that examines how the discrete relationships between actors at higher levels in an organization—the common locus of appointee-careerist relations— affect the perceptions, efforts, and performance of actors at lower levels of the organization. While studies exist that examine the different effects that dyadic (i.e., person-to-person) trust between employees and immediate supervisors has on their subordinates’ behavioral responses, no one has examined how dyadic trust established between higher-level employees and their supervisors affects organizational outcomes (Colquitt et al., 2007).11 Thus, as yet, no one has examined how the trust (distrust) that develops between career executives and political appointees affects the perceptions and behaviors of lower-level civil servants (i.e., the subordinates of career employees ) who are critical to long-term implementation success. Also uncharted are the effects of these factors on organizational outcomes—in the case of the administrative presidency, if presidential goals are advanced or not. Bureaucracy, the “Control Paradox,” and the Role of Trust in Organizations The topic of trust within interpersonal relations has been one of central importance in the history of philosophy. Indeed, interpersonal power is fundamental to organizational relationships based on economic, social, and informational exchange. Regardless of whether the conclusions of different philosophers were that mankind should or could trust one another (e.g., Hobbes’s conclusions on the nature of man versus Rousseau’s), the centrality of the construct is undeniable (Hosmer, 1995). As Golembiewski and Trust and the Administrative Presidency 41 McConkie (1975) remarked, “Perhaps there is no single variable which so thoroughly influences interpersonal and group behavior as does trust, on this point ancient and modern observers typically agree” (p. 131; as quoted in Hosmer, 1995, p. 379). Trust is seen as the essential, yet nebulous, basis of social stability (Blau, 1964; Fukuyama, 1995) and the foundation of both social and economic exchange (Hirsch, 1978). As Weber put forth, the very purpose of structuring organizational life in a rational bureaucratic form was the unreliability of charismatic leadership or the limited effectiveness of tradition as authority (Handel, 2003b, pp. 5–6...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9781421418506
Related ISBN
9781421418490
MARC Record
OCLC
922889469
Pages
176
Launched on MUSE
2015-10-13
Language
English
Open Access
No
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