Sample Psychology Paper on The pros and cons of coercion

Psychologists Bertram Raven and John French identified Coercive Power as one of the five types of power, (Moran & Farley, 2018, 5). They defined it as a situation where employees follow instructions forcefully. In such a situation, supervisors or employers punish employees not complying with the orders or instructions given. For instance, an employee complies with an order because he or she fears losing an annual bonus or the job in entirety.  Leaders can use direct or indirect coercion while giving instructions.  The use of coercion has its advantages and disadvantages.

First, coercion leads to compliance amongst employees. They are able to adhere to company rules, meet deadlines, maintain organizational culture and attain optimal productivity. In situations where employees exhibit insubordination, managers or supervisors can use coercion so that employees can keep time during lunch breaks, or maintain the right dress code at work, (Bomory, 2018, 15). Acts of discrimination can be avoided when employees are coerced by termination or suspension. Lastly, coercion helps when a turnaround is needed. This is in relation to situations where a company is facing closure or getting losses.

On the other hand, coercion has its own disadvantages. For example, job satisfaction is lowered amongst employees because they feel as if they are taken for granted. In addition, employees may retaliate by seeking alternative companies, have a strike or have poor productivity. Lastly, innovation is reduced especially when employees are forced to work according to an employer’s instructions as opposed to contributing new ideas which boost productivity.

In a nutshell, coercion is useful in certain situations where change is required in a company or when there is poor performance. Excessive use of coercion leads to a negative reputation thus poor productivity and possible losses by the company in the long run.




Gomory, T., & Dunleavy, D. (2018). Social Work and Coercion. In Encyclopedia of Social Work. 10- 23

Moran & Farley, M. (2019). Consent, coercion, and culpability: is prostitution stigmatized work or an exploitive and violent practice rooted in sex, race, and class inequality? Archives of sexual behavior, 1-7.