This article explores the significance of politicisation in social work and its role in challenging power dynamics and promoting transformative change. It is viewed as a means to challenge established power structures, raise awareness of issues and engage in political action. Three pitfalls are identified in the way politicisation is conceptualised and used. First, there is a tendency to define politicisation too broadly. The authors assert that politicisation should involve challenging the existing system rather than merely making modifications. Secondly, the belief in consensus thinking about democracy is criticised, as it overlooks power imbalances inherent in politics. The authors advocate for an agonistic politics approach, where ideological opponents engage in a struggle over competing values and interests within a shared democratic space. Lastly, the adoption of subpolitics as a politicising strategy, which focuses on individual actions, is deemed inadequate as it often fails to address structural inequalities. Instead, the authors propose prefigurative politics, which involves creating concrete collective interventions that anticipate and embody a different society in the present. In conclusion, this article underscores the importance of understanding its distinct meaning and strategies. The authors suggest agonistic and prefigurative politics as a promising framework for politicising practices in social work.