For change to be effective, it is important that it is accompanied with a clear vision and business strategy and that ensures that subsequent activities and interventions are coordinated and consistent with the objectives of the organization. At the health facility run by UF Health and Shands Jacksonville, the hospital has been in the midst of a financial crisis for several years. On March 20, 2015, the Chief Executive Officer at UF Health made it known that if the state legislature failed to release funds in time, the hospital would close immediately since it only had funds for 50 days operation. The State legislature released the funds and a cycle of change was implemented at UF Health. This essay will examine the importance of a shared vision and organizational culture in the context of UF Health and Shands Jacksonville.
According to Hinterhuber and Popp, a vision is an essential background to any new , entrepreneurial activity or major corporate change program (Palmer, Dunford and Akin, 2008). As Hinterhuber and Popp observe, a strategic vision is related to high and better competitive advantage, enhancing organizational performance, and achieving sustained organizational growth. With a clear vision, the board of an organization is at a good position to establish how well organizational leaders are performing and find out any disconnect between the vision and current practices.
In the context of UF Health and Shands Jacksonville, the organization needed to carry out effective change that would keep the hospital running sustainably in the future. When state legislatures realized the potential impact of the closure UF Health and Shands, they availed to the hospital with $95 million dollars for operations and $2.2 billion dollars in Low-Income Pool Program. The Low-Income Pool Program provides health care services to Medicaid, underinsured and uninsured populations. Considering the size of the population and their insurance status, the action by state legislature was warranted. UF Health and Shands Jacksonville run as a nonprofit hospital facility contracted with the city of Jacksonville providing care for the uninsured and under-insured. UF Health is the lone trauma one center in Florida, it impies that if closed patient lives would be at stake since they would be forced to go to Georgia, the next closest Trauma level one hospital for care. Furthermore, bearing in mind that UF Health uses $95 million dollars a year to provide care for uninsured and underinsured, this implies that the patients would then seek assistance at the nearest facility or hospital. Subsequently, following the provision of funds and measures to provide care for the uninsured and under-insured, UF Health had to implement change in its operations.
Beaver as quoted in Palmer, Dunford and Akin (2008) states that without a distinct vision of how they are going to be markedly different and unique from other similar organizations in adding and satisfying their customers, in this case they are likely to be the corporate failure statistics of tomorrow. UF Health and Shands had been given a boost by getting a steady source of funding throughout the year. The assured funding gave the hospital the confidence and assurance that it would continue running even in the future. This guarantee of funding was a good initial step but still however not enough to guarantee long-term sustainable operation. One of the changes identified was cutting down the operational costs of the hospital. For the funds to be utilized efficiently there had to be cost effective operations in the hospital.
One of the changes identified was to reduce the tendency of employees to resist change. As observed by Ming-Chu and Meng-Hsiu (2015), employees have a tendency of resistance to change due to comfort in the existing operational procedures and conditions or an unwillingness to take action despite being adversely affected by conditions. A second change would be to develop a culture of success. As Ming-Chu & Meng-Hsiu observe, an organization has to justify the changes it intends to initiate by providing legitimate and rational reasons for the organizational change and assist with overcoming resistance (2015). The reinforcement would be sufficient in assisting employees to gain a sense of identification with the mission and vision of the organization based on its management plan. The management plan is developed to monitor all the activities of the organization. When employees are able to identify with the mission and vision of the organization, they are in turn motivated to do what is necessary within their means to achieve personal and organizational objectives (Belgard, 2004).
Deetz, Tracy, and Simpson (2000) observe that for any organization preparing to carry out transformational change, it is necessary to carry out re-visioning exercises to assist lead them into the future. The process of creating a vision can be influential in boosting the self-esteem of the people who participate in it because they can see the potential fruits of their labors. After creating a vision, an organization aligns the abilities of its employees aimed at carrying out specific tasks that are in accordance with the vision. When carrying out transformational change, it is therefore important to re-vision to remind employees of their purpose in relation to the goals of the organization. UF Health to achieve this need to ensure an alignment of employees' jobs with their designated training or education merits. As DeCenzo, Robbins, and Verhulst (2013) observe, UF Health have the option to integrate a monitoring and guiding system on its Human Resources Management platform to ensure alignment of employee training and their roles in the organization.
For the change to be implemented by UF Health, they need to have an agent of change in the form of a nurturing change agent. The role of the nurturing agent is to manage change. According to Palmer, Dunford and Akin (2008), the nurturing change agent accomplishes change by taking over minor changes that have a constructive impact on the hospital whereby the managing director of the hospital is unable to control the outcome of such changes effectively. In this way, the changes take place at UF Health from the lowest levels of operations to the top ranks in an effort to ensure long-term sustainability so that this vital organization remains afloat to provide the necessary service to Northeast Florida. For an organization to achieve iots goals, it must have a vision and culture attached to it that drives the employees to work towards the said vision. For UF Health, following their financial crisis, the efforts by the state legislature necessitated the need for measures to ensure sustainable operation in the long-term. a shared vision and organizational culture will enable UF Health to overcome the challenges and use allocated resources for attainment of its goals and sustainability for the future.
Belgard, W. P. (2004). Shaping the Future: A Dynamic Process for Creating and Achieving Your Company's Strategic Vision. AMACOM Div American Mgmt Assn.
DeCenzo, D. A., Robbins, S. P., & Verhulst, S. L. (2013). Fundamentals of Human Resource Management (11th ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.
Deetz, S. A., Tracy, S. J., & Simpson, J. L. (2000). Leading organizations through transition: Communication and cultural change. Sage.
Ming-Chu.Y., & Meng-Hsiu.L. (2015). Unlocking the black box: Exploring the link between perceiving organizational support and resistance to change. Asia Pacific Management Review 20, 177-183. Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.
Palmer, Ian., Dunford, R., & Akin, G. (2008). Managing organizational change: A multiple perspectives approach (2nd ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.
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