Individual and Group Behavior in Organizations
An organization’s success or failure is dependent on myriads of factors that work cohesively to achieve certain desired results. Different organizations have different functionalities, staff, skill, customers, and management practices. However, one key commonality among all organizations, regardless of industry or commerce, is the strategies employed for the achievement for success. This is because all organizations strive for effective leadership, profitability, low employee turnover, and effective management and operations. All of these employ the same methodologies for their achievement with minimal variance being employed depending on the type, size, and experience of the organizations.
An analysis of the modus operandi of an organization is also a multi faceted task that requires an assessment of different factors, processes, systems, among others. Therefore, for this analysis, the anatomy of the organization will be pegged on Bohan’s model that employs the use of environment, strategy, and the internal organization. For this case, culture will be the primary tool of analysis for the organization with focus being made on organizational processes, systems, and the environment that necessitates a change or maintenance of a certain organizational culture (Ghauri & Cateora, 2006). Additionally, for this case analysis, the health care industry will be my focus, with the hospital setting being the assessment tool. The information gathered was retrieved from a colleague that had worked in a busy private hospital that catered to the needs of patients with varying degrees of illnesses including cancer and other chronic ailments.
The state of economy in the US has been on a gradual to almost stagnant growth since the 2007 global recession. The hospitality has been affected by this economic downturn with majority of people seeking medical assistance that is affordable, yet quality. This resulted in an increase in medical insurance covers that resulted in lesser people taking up the cover. The private medical clinics and hospitals experienced this similar dip in customer numbers since majority of them offered quality, yet slightly expensive medical care. However, owing to the changes being made to the health care sector under the Obama healthcare Act, the tide seems to be changing. The requirement that all people should have insurance medical cover, coupled with the government sponsored insurance medical cover for the underprivileged members of the society means that there has been an increase in the number of patients seeking primary and tertiary medical care in both public and private hospitals.
For the private hospital to survive in a highly crowded and turbulent industry, it had to ensure that its services are superlative and act as an open and attractive marketing strategy. Therefore, private hospital embarked on expanding its facilities, staff, skill rollout, and equipments. This was instrumental in ensuring that the wide range of services offered resulted in a wide berth of clientele and patients, which meant greater revenues and higher profitability margins. It was also distinctive since it placed it higher than a majority of its primary and secondary competitors. In the health care industry, size and quality are the most important survival factors that guarantee the achievement of goals and objectives of the health care institution.
In this private hospital, the market segmentation had been done such that the target customers were mainly derived from the affluent members of the society. These target customers were chosen from the high and middle-income members of the society that can not only pay higher fees for exclusivity and quality of treatment, but also prefer privacy from other prying members of the society. However, in spite of this preference for a certain customers with money, the private hospital also occasionally admits other potential customers that offer unique medical needs. This is aimed at providing awareness to their main clientele that their needs or health problems, no matter their magnitude or complexity, can be easily and effectively handled by the hospital.
According to the Michael porter competitive factors, the three that took hold and affected the business environment of the private hospital’s existence and operational capabilities were the threat of new entrants, Substitutes, and the bargaining power of buyers. The private hospital has successfully managed to balance the competitive advantage and disadvantage of other hospitals and clinics through the creation of effective systems and strategies that serve to enhance the superiority and assertiveness of the hospital’s reputation.
The Internal Organization
Processes and Systems
The processes that the private hospital has constituted for effective management of its staff, resources, and operations are derived from basic strategies for other hospitals, as well as added some unique elements and procedures to better serve its clientele and patients. For instance, the hospital has set up rules, regulations, measures, and protocols that must be adhered by all their staff when dealing with patients. These fundamental processes are communicated to every staff and patients can embark on a feedback mechanism to report the successful or ineffective implementation of the processes by any of the hospital’s staff.
The private hospital has also effectively and accurately deployed its resources to all the vital sectors and departments of the hospital, to enhance the ease of provision of products, medical care and services to its patients and clientele. For instance, it has accrued and used capital for the purchase and installation of technological equipment, as well as supply of human skills and knowledge as applied to medical, customers and patient care. The private has also employed the use of location, brand name, goodwill, and recognition as one of its resources for enhancing maintenance and acquisition of existing and new customers, respectively. It has also developed constant and trustworthy relationships with its supplies for raw materials, equipments, and human resource management. This is essential for ensuring a constant supply of resources that are vital for the effective operation and existence of the private hospital.
Knowledge and Information
The value of the knowledge and information derived regarding an organization is essential for its successful existence. Therefore, the hospital has continually kept abreast of latest technologies, medical procedures, business economics, and management operations to enhance the quality of its services and products to its patients. Additionally, the use of a feedback system has also been helpful in ensuring that the hospital acquires reports, suggestions, and general feedback not only from its customers, but also from its staff, suppliers, and top management. This open relationship has resulted in the hospital managing to identify areas that it would need to improve, areas that are problematic, and those that successfully serve their purposes.
Culture serves as one of the primary driving forces behind an organization’s success or failure. Therefore, it is vital that the organization, in spite of its size, type, experience, industry, or location maintain a constant and effective culture that can be easily integrated into the organization’s modus operandi and employee awareness and practices. A deviation from one form of culture to other needs to be carefully managed and gradually implemented to ensure that it does not interfere with the company modus operandi, management, or staff productivity. Additionally, culture is mainly related to staff management and customer experience. These two vital aspects serve as the core existence and success of any organization and hence need to be managed to ensure that the right culture is developed and maintained.
In the case of the private hospital, three key drivers of culture have been employed to drive the hospital’s vision and mission for achieving its set goals and objectives. Innovation in the hospital is employed on mainly three aspects; the customers, the staff, and the hospital’s operations. The marketing and administrative departments have been tasked with promoting the hospital’s services and products to its customers and addressing to the needs of the customers. His means that these two departments have to be creative and innovative in their methodologies and strategies employed to achieve this endeavor. The doctors and other medical personnel have to constantly create newer and more effective mechanisms for treating patients that sets them apart from their counterparts in other hospitals.
In the wards and patient care centers, the hospital’s personnel have embarked on a collaborative structure among the care givers to enhance their cooperation when dealing with patients. This is crucial since teamwork enhances diplomacy, commitment, loyalty to the job, and productivity when giving care to its patients. Additionally, this prevents one person from continually being present to administer medical care since the various personnel gain experience as a result of hands on approaches to patients. However, one drawback that has been experienced at the hospital as a result of suing this approach is that there is a lack of clear hierarchical structures that sometimes breeds chaos. The success of the combination of these two cultures has been as a result of the environment created at the hospital that necessitates a system that works cohesively and is dependent on the maintenance of effective protocols and processes.
Levers of Cultural Change
In the private hospital, the management has employed a system that utilizes a tight communication climate by departmentalizing patient information. This has been achieved by dissecting the patient’s information into financial information, medical information, family information, type and location of the patient care and bed space or room, among others. Each of this information is only given to relevant parties such as medical information strictly to medical personnel, financial information to accountants, patient location such as room number for nurses, among other different and diverse information. However, in areas such as the emergency care center or unit, a loose communication climate is employed where paramedics, nurses, and doctors continually exchange information on patient care and condition.
The private hospital employs a system that uses both a top down and bottom up decision-making climate. This is dependent on the type of decisions and information that needs to be shared, as well as the department that needs to communicate to each other. The top down climate is between the top management and hospital administrators when communicating pertinent decisions that reflect on the overall or general policy framework that affects the hospitals operations. For instance, the hospital employed a system where overtime payouts would be paid at the end of the month and dependent on ones rank and stay with the hospital (Boer, 2002). For the bottom up decision-making climate, it is mainly experienced at the ground level when dealing with patients and the medical care given to them.
For instance, when a patient is brought into the hospital with an illness, the medical practitioner attending to the patient is responsible for assessing the level of care required and the medication. This decision is then passed on to the financial department to determine the cost of the patient care. The information is then passed on to the administrative and hospitality department that admits the patients and records the pertinent information into logs to assess the hospital’s profitability, patient traffic, types of medical care being given, types of medications being given, among others.
Making Plans/Setting Goals
In the private hospital, the system used for making plans is twofold; both open planning and closed planning. Each of these methodologies is also dependent on the level of expertise and type of goal that needs to be achieved. For instance, the hospital would use a closed planning climate for major decisions that do not necessarily require the input of other workers such as the erection of a new wing in the hospital, changing management structures, or changing the type of equipments or supplies products. This closed planning climate involves the top management and experts in specific pertinent fields.
The hospital also has a culture of an open planning climate, which is mainly departmental. This involves each department setting goals and objectives that it needs to achieved and require the involvement or participation of other members of staff, the top management, suppliers, and the customers. For instance, in the pharmacology department, it could plan to set up an online payment and purchase system for different medicine that has been prescribed by the doctor. This plan required the input of the staff on the regulatory measures that would need to be used, the type of drugs that needs to accessed, the type of payments that customers that customers would prefer, and the acceptance of the top management on the plan based on its viability and usefulness to the hospital.
The theory X climate is the most viable methodology that is in use in the hospital. According to the directive issued by the top management regarding operational procedures and effectiveness, every employee is required to adhere to a strict code of conduct. This is due to the rising need for the hospital to reduce cases of professional misconduct, malpractices, and poor decision making skills that could easily result in civil suits being filed against the hospital. This carrot and stick approach to performance also serves to ensure that the staff remains alert and attentive to their duties and responsibilities.
The culture employed and always encouraged in this hospital has been that of teamwork. Every department has to be constantly in communication with others, as well as develop close working relationships. To develop this culture, the hospital has engaged its members in frequent training and education to encourage teamwork and to develop close relationships both professionally and emotionally (McCarthy, 2004). The team work efforts has been considered to have paid off since the ease of flow of pertinent information and working relationships has resulted in better health care and patient support strategies based on the required needs. Additionally, these relationships provide the management with a welcome avenue for implementing their plans, the mission and vision of the hospital, and engaging staff in constant and open communication.
The two innovation cultures present within the hospital are the try it and see it, and the tried and true climate. The try it and see climate has been employed mainly in areas that do not affect direct patient care such as the marketing departments, catering department, and other departments that relate mainly to normal non medical procedures. For instance, the marketing department continually changes its methodologies for increasing awareness of the hospital’s services such as sponsoring local sports teams or performing community campaigns through reduced medical care. The tried and true climate is mainly employed to the protocols, methodologies, and policies that relate to medical care. This is essential since the medical practices and diagnosis have majorly remained the same.
The factors affecting an organization’s success or failure based on the Bohan model are still many and diverse. However, one of the most important factors is culture since it affects the two main variables that directly affect an organization, which are employees and customers. The environment and strategy employed within the internal organization have been instrumental in shaping the culture of the hospital case analysis that has been assessed above.
Boer, F. P. (2002). The Real Options Solution: Finding Total Value in a High-Risk World. New York: Wiley & sons.
Ghauri, P. & Cateora, P. (2006). International Marketing. (2nd Ed.). London, UK: McGraw-Hill Education.
McCarthy, J. (2004). “Near-Term Growth of Off shoring Accelerating.” Forrester Research. 1 (4), 9-21.