VIEWS: 517 PAGES: 30 CATEGORY: Business POSTED ON: 1/13/2011
Contingency Theory in Hospital Management document sample
Contingency Theory in Hospital Management document sample
History of Management Definition of Management Traditionally, the term "management" refers to the activities (and often the group of people) involved in the four general functions: planning, organizing, leading and coordinating of resources. Note that the four functions recur throughout the organization and are highly integrated. Emerging trends in management include assertions that leading is different than managing, and that the nature of how the four functions are carried out must change to accommodate a "new paradigm" in management. This topic in the library helps the reader accomplish broad understanding of management (including traditional and emerging views), and the areas of knowledge and skills required to carry out the major functions of management. Traditional Interpretations of Management There are a variety of views about this term. Traditionally, the term "management" refers to the activities (and often the group of people) involved in the four general functions listed below. (Note that the four functions recur throughout the organization and are highly integrated): Interpretations of Management Another common view is that "management" is getting things done through others. Yet another view, quite apart from the traditional view, asserts that the job of management is to support employee's efforts to be fully productive members of the organizations and citizens of the community. To most employees, the term "management" probably means the group of people (executives and other managers) who are primarily responsible for making decisions in the organization. In a nonprofit, the term "management" might refer to all or any of the activities of the board, executive director and/or program directors. Interpretations of Management Some writers, teachers and practitioners assert that the above view is rather outmoded and that management needs to focus more on leadership skills, e.g., establishing vision and goals, communicating the vision and goals, and guiding others to accomplish them. They also assert that leadership must be more facilitative, participative and empowering in how visions and goals are established and carried out. Some people assert that this really isn't a change in the management functions, rather it's re-emphasizing certain aspects of management. Scientific Management Theory (1890-1940) At the turn of the century, the most notable organizations were large and industrialized. Often they included ongoing, routine tasks that manufactured a variety of products. The United States highly prized scientific and technical matters, including careful measurement and specification of activities and results. Management tended to be the same. Frederick Taylor developed the :scientific management theory” which espoused this careful specification and measurement of all organizational tasks. Tasks were standardized as much as possible. Workers were rewarded and punished. This approach appeared to work well for organizations with assembly lines and other mechanistic, routinized activities. Bureaucratic Management Theory (1930-1950) Max Weber embellished the scientific management theory with his bureaucratic theory. Weber focused on dividing organizations into hierarchies, establishing strong lines of authority and control. He suggested organizations develop comprehensive and detailed standard operating procedures for all routinized tasks. Human Relations Movement (1930-today) Eventually, unions and government regulations reacted to the rather dehumanizing effects of these theories. More attention was given to individuals and their unique capabilities in the organization. A major belief included that the organization would prosper if its workers prospered as well. Human Resource departments were added to organizations. The behavioral sciences played a strong role in helping to understand the needs of workers and how the needs of the organization and its workers could be better aligned. Various new theories were spawned, many based on the behavioral sciences (some had name like theory “X”, “Y” and “Z”). Contemporary Theories in Management Contingency Theory Basically, contingency theory asserts that when managers make a decision, they must take into account all aspects of the current situation and act on those aspects that are key to the situation at hand. Basically, it’s the approach that “it depends.” For example, the continuing effort to identify the best leadership or management style might now conclude that the best style depends on the situation. If one is leading troops in the Persian Gulf, an autocratic style is probably best (of course, many might argue here, too). If one is leading a hospital or university, a more participative and facilitative leadership style is probably best. Systems Theory Systems theory has had a significant effect on management science and understanding organizations. First, let’s look at “what is a system?” A system is a collection of part unified to accomplish an overall goal. If one part of the system is removed, the nature of the system is changed as well. For example, a pile of sand is not a system. If one removes a sand particle, you’ve still got a pile of sand. However, a functioning car is a system. Remove the carburetor and you’ve no longer got a working car. A system can be looked at as having inputs, processes, outputs and outcomes. Systems share feedback among each of these four aspects of the systems. Systems Theory The effect of systems theory in management is that writers, educators, consultants, etc. are helping managers to look at the organization from a broader perspective. Systems theory has brought a new perspective for managers to interpret patterns and events in the workplace. They recognize the various parts of the organization, and, in particular, the interrelations of the parts, e.g., the coordination of central administration with its programs, engineering with manufacturing, supervisors with workers, etc. This is a major development. In the past, managers typically took one part and focused on that. Then they moved all attention to another part. The problem was that an organization could, e.g., have a wonderful central administration and wonderful set of teachers, but the departments didn’t synchronize at all. Chaos Theory As chaotic and random as world events seem today, they seem as chaotic in organizations, too. Yet for decades, managers have acted on the basis that organizational events can always be controlled. A new theory (or some say “science”), chaos theory, recognizes that events indeed are rarely controlled. Many chaos theorists (as do systems theorists) refer to biological systems when explaining their theory. They suggest that systems naturally go to more complexity, and as they do so, these systems become more volatile (or susceptible to cataclysmic events) and must expend more energy to maintain that complexity. As they expend more energy, they seek more structure to maintain stability. This trend continues until the system splits, combines with another complex system or falls apart entirely. Sound familiar? This trend is what many see as the trend in life, in organizations and the world in general. 4 Functions of Management Planning, including identifying goals, objectives, methods, resources needed to carry out methods, responsibilities and dates for completion of tasks. Examples of planning are strategic planning, business planning, project planning, staffing planning, advertising and promotions planning, etc. 4 Functions of Management Organizing resources to achieve the goals in an optimum fashion. Examples are organizing new departments, human resources, office and file systems, re-organizing businesses, etc Leading, including to set direction for the organization, groups and individuals and also influence people to follow that direction. Examples are establishing strategic direction (vision, values, mission and / or goals) and championing methods of organizational performance management to pursue that direction. 4 Functions of Management Controlling, or coordinating, the organization's systems, processes and structures to reach effectively and efficiently reach goals and objectives. This includes ongoing collection of feedback, and monitoring and adjustment of systems, processes and structures accordingly. Examples include use of financial controls, policies and procedures, performance management processes, measures to avoid risks etc. Management Styles Managers have to perform many roles in an organization and how they handle various situations will depend on their style of management. A management style is an overall method of leadership used by a manager. There are two sharply contrasting styles that will be broken down into smaller subsets later: Autocratic Permissive Characteristics of Management Styles Autocratic: Leader makes all decisions unilaterally. Permissive: Leader permits subordinates to take part in decision making and also gives them a considerable degree of autonomy in completing routine work activities. Combining these categories with democratic (subordinates are allowed to participate in decision making) and directive (subordinates are told exactly how to do their jobs) styles gives us four distinct ways to manage: Characteristics of Management Styles Directive Democrat: Makes decisions participatively; closely supervises subordinates. Directive Autocrat: Makes decisions unilaterally; closely supervises subordinates. Permissive Democrat: Makes decisions participatively; gives subordinates latitude in carrying out their work. Permissive Autocrat: Makes decisions unilaterally; gives subordinates latitude in carrying out their work. In what situations would each style be appropriate? Inappropriate? Managers must also adjust their styles according to the situation that they are presented with. Below are four quadrants of situational leadership that depend on the amount of support and guidance needed: Telling: Works best when employees are neither willing nor able to do the job (high need of support and high need of guidance). In what situations would each style be appropriate? Inappropriate? Delegating: Works best when the employees are willing to do the job and know how to go about it (low need of support and low need of guidance). Participating: Works best when employees have the ability to do the job, but need a high amount of support (low need of guidance but high need of support). Selling: Works best when employees are willing to do the job, but don’t know how to do it (low need of support but high need of guidance). The different styles depend on the situation and the relationship behavior (amount of support required) and task behavior (amount of guidance required). Decide NOW Below are a few situations and options for what you would do. Try to decide which of the four situational styles would work best in each situation. Then pick the option that best fits that style. Situation 1 The employees in your program appear to be having serious problems getting the job done. Their performance has been going downhill rapidly. They have not responded to your efforts to be friendly or to your expressions of concern for their welfare. Which style would you pick? What would you do? Reestablish the need for following program procedures and meeting the expectations for task accomplishment. Be sure that staff members know you are available for discussion, but don’t pressure them. Talk with your employees and then set performance goals. Wait and see what happens. Situation 2 During the past few months, the quality of work done by staff members has been increasing. Record keeping is accurate and up to date. You have been careful to make sure that the staff members are aware of your performance expectations.Which style would you pick? What would you do? Stay uninvolved. Continue to emphasize the importance of completing tasks and meeting deadlines. Be supportive and provide clear feedback. Continue to make sure that staff members are aware of performance expectations. Make every effort to let staff members feel important and involved in the decision making process. Situation 3 Performance and interpersonal relations among your staff have been good. You have normally left them alone. However, a new situation has developed, and it appears that staff members are unable to solve the problem themselves. Which style would you pick? What would you do? Bring the group together and work as a team to solve the problem. Continue to leave them alone to work it out. Act quickly and firmly to identify the problem and establish procedures to correct it Encourage the staff to work on the problem, letting them know you are available as a resource and for discussion if they need you. Situation 4 You are considering a major change in your program. Your staff has a fine record of accomplishment and a strong commitment to excellence. They are supportive of the need for change and have been involved in the planning.Which style would you pick? What would you do? Continue to involve the staff in the planning, but direct the change. Announce the changes and then implement them with close supervision. Allow the group to be involved in developing the change, but don’t push the process. Let the staff manage the change process. Organizational Life Cycles and Management Styles Based on the book "Barbarians to Bureaucrats" by Lawrence Miller, published by C.N. Potter: New York. Edited by Carter McNamara, MBA, PhD In this very enlightening book, Miller suggests there is a strong relationship between the life-cycle stage of an organization and the nature of its leadership. He asserts this evolutionary life-cycle is typical to cultures as well as organizations. His work shows powerful insights to the nature of organizations and their management and matches the experiences of many practitioners. His work can be referenced to explain much of the wide variation in management styles, yet close association between styles of management and stages of an organization's life. Miller suggests that the life of an organization is similar to the shape of a bell curve, that is, the organization experiences a rise of health, it peaks, and then gradually declines. The life-cycle stages of Prophet, Barbarian, Builder, Explorer stages are on the way up the curve of health, the Synergist is at the peak, and the Administrator, Bureaucrat, and Aristocrat stages are on the way back down the curve of health. Synergist Miller says a synergist is "... a leader who has escaped his or her own conditioned tendencies toward one style and incorporated, appreciated and unified each of the styles of leadership on the life-cycle curve. The best managed companies are synergistic." Miller asserts that the synergist is a synergy of the other management styles, and therefore, is best described by a set of principles. Synergist 1. Spirit - Corporations are both spiritual and material in nature. In their youth, they possess spiritual rather than material assets. In decline, this is reverse. Health is maintained by unifying the spiritual and material assets. 2. Purpose - The purpose of the business organization is to create real wealth by serving its [stakeholder!]. It is a function of leadership to instill and reinforce social purpose. 3. Creativity - The first and most important act of business is the creative act: the creation of new and improve products, services, selling and means of production. Change, youthfulness and energy are requirements until death. (Those who lean toward creativity will be required to sacrifice for the sake of administrative sanity.) 4. Challenge and response - The task of leaders is to create or recognize the current challenge, respond creatively, and avoid a condition of ease. Reliance on yesterday's successful response in the face of new challenges leads to decline. (It is an irony of life that satisfaction and security are the enemies of excellence.) Synergist 5. Planned urgency - The urgency to decide and act promptly leads to expansion and advance. Prompt action must be balanced by deliberate planning. There will always be conflict between promptness and planning. 6. Unity and diversity - Advancing cultures are socially unifying and become diverse in character. Leaders must act to unify diverse talents and traits. Leaders must actively resist the tendency to attract and promote like personalities and skills. 7. Specialized competence - Specialized knowledge and skills and the integration of those competencies must be pursued vigorously. Efficient methods are derived from specialized competence; however, specialized competence leads to inefficient methods. 8. Efficient administration - Efficient administration is required to achieve integration and performance as differentiation increases. Unchecked administration inevitably leads to bureaucracy and the decline of creativity and wealth creation. 9. On-the-Spot Decisions - Decisions should be made by those on-the-spot, close to the customer, product or service. The further decisions are removed from the point of action and knowledge, the worse the quality and the higher the cost. Consensus is a sign of maturity and health.
Pages to are hidden for
"Contingency Theory in Hospital Management"Please download to view full document