A Critical Analysis of Change Management Strategy or Performance Improvement Initiatives
According to Schulz and Johnson (2003), the sole aim of any organization is resource utilization aimed at attaining set goals. The structure of the organization should allow for good handling of resources. Institutions of medicine are evolving. The aim of medical firms is to provide adequate and sustainable health care to patients. Hospitals house both patients and physicians (Schulz, & Johnson, 2003).The most vital goal of institutions of health is procurement of treatment to the sick. In order to achieve set goals and ensure harmony in operations, hospitals implement Strategies that seek to ensure efficiency. Managing hospitals requires effective handling and dissemination of resources. This can be achieved through such means as team work and good leadership. Coordinating of resources in hospitals is often very demanding. As such, hospital managements often face numerous challenges. The leading manager must be adequately equipped with latest information at all times. As Llopis (2012) illustrates, a manager effects numerous and constantly changing roles. They are required to illustrate good leadership and maintain a good institutional system of values and motivate employees to perform efficiently. They must set goals and maintain a friendly relation with the surrounding community. Hospitals are now moving more and more towards pleasing the demands of their surrounding communities (Goyal, 2005). Hospitals work within a unique setting. For example, the key consumers of services in hospitals are patients, sick individual who require adequate care and attention. The environment is very volatile and gullible. Ethics rank very highly. This uncommon trait is what makes hospitals difficult establishment to manage (Goyal, 2005). Managing a hospital is thus a well planned and systematically process.
According to Sare and Ogilvie (2010), planning is important to any institution hoping to effect positive change. Planning is important at virtually all levels of the hospital. In the most pure form, planning through strategy seeks to influence the future endeavors of an institution through a comprehensive analysis of current events. It connects the present with the future to give a concise outlook of the yet to come (Sare, & Ogilvie, 2010). Implementing a strategy requires that a firm is fully aware of its capabilities. The firm should be well aware of its strength and weaknesses. The firm should consider the costs of effecting the change and the possible consequences to the surrounding settlements. A humane consideration of the environments needs and demands. As Winter, Ammenwerth, and Haux (2005) note, hospitals are now beginning to consider the grievances expressed by the surrounding communities in dealing with matters such pollution of the environment.
Planning must be done in unison and harmony. The parties involved must be willing to undertake actions, be open and aware about the plan and show enough faith through word and action (Sare, & Ogilvie, 2010). Most publications on planning often show little relations to the medical profession. They are often biased towards proverbial commercial aspects such marketing. On the contrary, medical practice also operatives within a business related environment. The involved management is often better informed about what it considers as the team of marketing and even the market of which it aims attract. In light of this, and given the rising business orientation of health centers, planning is becoming more competitive in nature (Sare, & Ogilvie, 2010). Planning accompanied by good entrepreneurial skills, serves as means through which the medical professions and establishments can be enhanced (Sare, & Ogilvie, 2010).
Improving Performance in Health Care Facilities
When working within a team, functional limitations are always defied. This means that, team members, contradict organizational ranking, sanctions and laws in order to ensure for an organized and timely handling of the task at hand .The importance of working together is quickly gaining popularity within the health sector. As asserted by Vogt (2013), enterprises require consistent team cooperation in order to ensure accomplishment of set goals. Businesses are growing beyond traditional levels and thus specialization of human input is gaining acceptance. Teams allow for the better handling of tasks. Functioning within teams is eyed as a good way of cubing and enhancing employee skills and ensuring better handling of patients in medical facilities (Zwarenstein, Spin, Lewin, & Reeves, 2011). The health sector is renowned for its strict adherence to protocol. The experienced physicians dominate the top most positions, meting out orders to the lower ranked and lesser experienced subordinates (Lighter, 2010). Nonetheless, working in teams, is increasingly becoming the norm in medical practice (Lighter, 2010). Experienced nurses often find themselves lesser submissive when functioning under physicians, who hold the sole role of foreseeing the activities of all nurses. This apparent inability to submit poses serious problems to normal operations within the medical setting. It could be due to this and other relational issues that most medical institutions are incorporating teams in the handling of daily activities. It is in this light that Sare and Ogilvie (2010) noted that the nursing world and that of finance are always changing. They point out the constant nature by which the world is evolving and of how change is ever present.
According to Maxwell (2002), to become an effective player of the team one should be able to adjust to a changing environment. Team membership should be founded on cooperation and functioning as a single force (Oxford dictionary, 2013). One should be able to adjust to the team’s needs rather than team to theirs own needs. For instance, taking an example of a medical institution, the leading practitioner should operate and function only in a way they consider advantageous to the subordinating staff. They should be conscious enough of how their actions affect and influences the team’s morale. They should develop and attract the team’s trust and believe. Trust is essential in all teams. Given the varying cultural and background differences that define teams, problems are more likely than not to arise. Maxwell (2002) suggests that these relational differences can be cubed through encouraging gatherings such as meals and conferences. Nonetheless, the role played by good players in the team can no longer be underrated. As Parker (2011) notes, team players have grown from matters of mere research to know influencing functioning of institutions. Working in teams is indeed beneficial to any organization.
Advantages of team work. As Augustine (2011) observes, the foremost benefit of working within a team is that the team can attain greater results in the performance of a particular task. However, the advantages of working as a team are more less the following. To begin with, working in a team ensures for a better handling of problems hence better results. Teams bring about an elevated devotion to work thus greater employee attendances. Working in a team also ensures that confronted difficulties are pointed out by those of which they readily affect. Apart from the advantages noted above, functioning within a team ensures that varied skills and working capabilities are harnessed and used in the handling of a single task. On the other hand, sanctions that hinder interdepartmental cooperation are broken for the benefit of the firm and corporation as a whole. Augustine (2011) also notes that working within a team enhances communication and cooperation among team members. The benefits of team cooperation can be summed up as being a key booster of morale and facilitator of cooperation among members of a team. However, the handling and management of a team can often be so demanding. Members of a team often face challenges and difficulties that serve as hindrances to good performance.
Disadvantages of team work. Team cooperation is not entirely flawless. Functioning within a team has its own share of limitations. It is in this light that Nel (2007) notes the apparent laxity that defines closely linked teams. He asserts that teams tend to portray laxity in handling issues. Having developed an extra respect for their leader, they find it hard to oppose the leader’s views without feeling that they are undermining the leader’s authority. This apparent laxity reduces the effectiveness of the team. The team often ends up developing an indirect mood of sharing thoughts. The team operates as a single individual with one thought and way of pondering. The result of this being inability to confront challenges openly and impartially. The team’s soul goal at this point becomes impressing the leader. Such a group is often characterized by the use of force towards radical members and a self appointed pious nature (Nel, 2007). Teams are often blamed for not being able to operate and make decisions in the absence of the person leading.
Code of Conduct
According to Sare and Ogilvie (2010), management of change in health sectors, for instance the ways of operation and practice of the nursing profession, can be attained by implementing principles guiding planning within the profession itself. These guidelines are comprehensive and equally connected to the way of life of the nursing sector including concise in tale by the people involved. Planning through strategy entails concise thought of the available resources within the organization, for example the medical profession, and relating this to the set goals (Sare, & Ogilvie, 2010). Considering this, planning thus works side by side with good leadership.
As mentioned before, medical institutions employ a strict adherence to protocol. Practitioners are expected to respect and in most cases not question the actions of their superiors. For example, nurses should establish a high degree of respect to the doctor in control. It is considered unprofessional when a lower subordinate questions the actions of their superiors even when the mistake is very obvious. The assumption is that the superior is obviously learned and smart enough to figure out the mistake in good time. This is often not the case. Problems are thus always around the corner. Taking an example of senior nurses and how they relate with doctors. As explained earlier, such nurses find it hard to submit to the doctors commands. This is even more relevant when the doctor involved is a new recruit. As Jackson (2006) observes, medicine is established on deep science roots and often less understood by normal individuals. The more personalized form of medical has vanished with time. Hospitals have grown over time from being more in touch with the patient to being complex entities of business. Indeed, the key feature of traditional medical practice was that of a single doctor working in closeness with a patient. This special trait ensured that the patient is attended to adequately. The world has changed and along with it medical practices. Health institutions have taken a new form. As Gassiot, Searcy and Giles (2011) observed, historical practices in medicine worked best during historical times. The modern world demands a better and well adjusted operation. The world is constantly changing and to succeed in any endeavor, one must adapt.
Leadership is a key feature for any establishment seeking to achieve success. It is by noting this that Parkin (2009) argues that the gateway to attaining successful change in a health institution is through leadership and good management. Leadership aims to not only influence external components of an organization but it also seeks to delve deeper into more personal features such as: motivation and inspiration of individuals in an organization (Parkin, 2009). Organizational leadership seeks to empower workers into Effective beings. Leadership’s key aim is to inspire. A good leader must stay close and devoted to the organization. If probable, the leader should not only be member but also a practicing profession within the establishment. As Goddal (2011) observed, hospitals led by member doctors held higher chances of success than those not doing the same. Such leaders are likely to be more in touch with the organization. Managing and leading are not entirely similar neither are they that separate. Leadership therefore acts as a supplement to the management process. As such, good leaders need to be motivational and encouraging. They should inspire. Good managers on the other hand need not be so inspirational but rather effective in handling their duties (Parkin, 2009). Leadership needs also to function within an organized cultural setting. Cultural awareness is thus important for there to be good leadership.
Leadership and team work. As noted earlier, effective team work and good leadership go hand in hand. It is considering this that Lussier and Achua (2009) conclude that though virtually entire teams can be seen as groups, the fact is that any group cannot be a team. Teams require much more professionalism and organization. A team needs and calls for cooperation and dedication to the task at hand. Groups are formed but teams are created. A team is a complete entity in itself. Once in a team, the individual seizes to exist. For this level of cooperation and order to be attained, the team needs an effective leader, a team player. A person well informed and exposed about the firms practices yet equally dedicated and motivated to their work. Lussier and Achua (2009), also note that teamwork encompasses a sense of mutual accountability. As such, when the team succeeds, the members also succeed and vice verse. For example a surgeon performing an operation needs the cooperation and assistance of not only other medical staff members but also the assistance and cooperation of nurses. The outcome of the surgery should not only be the surgeon’s responsibility, but should be accounted for and shared by the entire operating team. This working in togetherness and as single group can only serve to enhance the medical profession. It is due to this that medical institutions are beginning to develop a bias towards handling of activities in teams. It is considering this that Dössel and Schlegel (2010) note the rising need to incorporate and develop teams in medical courses. They note that timely diagnosis and handling of complex medical appliances requires that physicians work together as a single force. This should entail a complete cooperation between the varied departments and medical personnel. This should be done in an impartial and comprehensive way. It can be through good leadership. It should be done by an effective leader, a team player.
Organizational leadership and culture. According to Schein (2010), culture entails systematic consistency in actions by a grouping as it strives to adapt to changes. This strict adherence to set norms is what gives the group a unique identity. Culture entails the way of life of a particular people. In a medical context it thus entails the way of life of medical professions. The language, norms and values observed by this profession. As mentioned earlier, the medical profession observes strict adherence to protocol. This in effect is a cultural strait. Medical practitioners have their own particular way of acting and effecting operations. Culture follows a top to bottom approach. In other words, it begins from the leader trickling down to the subordinates. As such, a doctor should act correctly for the junior practitioners and nurses to act similarly. Schein (2010) identifies set of beliefs and norms as key to any culture. Adequate and organized cultural setting in medical institutions can thus be very influential in ensuring harmony within the workplace.
The best summing up on group performance would be that team functioning empowers the parties evolved. An empowered soul translates to an effective and dedicated person. Empowerment is a driver not an obstructer, an encourager not persecutor. As Hayes (2002) asserts, empowerment is much more than handing down of roles to subordinates. Empowerment motivates an individual into performing better. Indeed as Carlos (2010) points out, empowerment should be more relevant today than was in the past. As Banik (2008) concludes, empowerment is the comprehensive belief in and dedication to the ones self. Empowered employees perform better in their chores and are more than willing to take that extra mile.
Adaptation in Health Care Facilities
Adaptation connotes an adjustment to change. Adaptation entails an ability and willingness to embrace and effect change. Change is however not always that easy to accept. Harsh (2011) observes that change often faces great opposition. Individuals are frightened because they do not know what might follow their willingness to adjust. Employees often question the firm’s ability to effect positive change. Effecting change within an organization often contradicts the members own views. According to Schulz and Johnson (2003), the medical world is undergoing constant change. They suggest that whatever is considered improbable and impossible today, might as well be very achievable in the near future. They observe possible difficulties in dealing with the ethical notion concerning practices in healthcare that are considered to be acceptable in normal society. These areas include debates on alteration and adjustment of genes and of suitable and cost management. Current trends suggest an evolutionary outlook within the medical practice.
As Sibinga and Cash (2001) have noted, communities are becoming more liberal. Decision making and planning is becoming lesser and lesser a reserve of the higher authorities in organizations. All employees share an equal platform in the handling of issues. The ruling management harness views and in tale from all possible and readily available departments and sections of the firm. The management of a business is often structured in a manner that gives the upper leadership priority in the making of important decisions within the organization (Hales, 2001). Nonetheless an organization’s ability to adapt to change depends on two key features. The firm must evaluate the possible consequences that change might cause to their firm. The firm must also define the actions it seeks to install in order to effect change. From whichever end this is observed, the bottom line is that, for effective handling of change, an organization must rigorously and fully employ the input of each an every employee. This is done to ensure for a smooth transition as the firm embraces transformation.
The manner in which an organization reacts to change depends more or less on all its employees. The leadership should consider the views and reactions of the entire establishment. The participation of employees in the making of decisions should always be encouraged (McGraw, Doherty, & Taylor, 2012). This enhances employee awareness and closeness to the organization. Medical firms, given their unique challenges, should by all means ensure impartiality in its decision strategies. The actions of physicians should be impartial and thoroughly informed. As medical firms strive to adapt to an ever changing environment, they should consider implementing adaptive features such as: encouraging team performances, ensuring employee empowerment and facilitating smooth and informed transitions as they embrace change. Employment of strategies of handling change should however be embraced with caution. Medical firms are complex and extremely fluid. As society changes and embraces newer cultural ways, they change their ways of relating to and with the environment. The challenges facing the medical world are numerous and real. As Lucash (2011) reveals, medical institutions face an ever changing and unknown future. Medical firms are curving a more commercial outlook. The making of profit is now beginning to dominate most medical firms.
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