"Healthcare Management - Staff Morale Problems" is an engrossing example of a paper on the health system. The purpose of this essay is to provide a critical discussion on an issue pertaining to healthcare management. In this paper, the focus of the discussion will be on staff morale problems. The format that this paper will utilize is to first identify some of the issues and implications of this condition by first highlighting why morale problems are so prevalent in the healthcare industry followed by information about the subsequent problems associated with this condition.
As a final point in this paper will develop a plan to address this issue. Without question, there are a plethora of organizations that suffer from staff morale problems for any number of different reasons. In general terms, it could be argued that workplace morale is the condition resulting from certain inadequate or inappropriate workplace behaviors. According to research by Cameron et al. (2009), it is the case that in the Nursing industry, the condition is strongly correlated with workplace autonomy, the quality of the equipment that is used in the work environment, safety, the work demand placed on workers, stress, workplace safety (Or lack thereof), long term career prospects, remuneration as well as overall workplace reward (P. 617).
One could reasonably conclude that a work environment in which these aforementioned conditions exist would likely have a high degree of employee turnover, absenteeism, as well as an elevated threat of disruptive behaviors. The implications of poor staff morale as further argued by Cameron et al. (2009) is that the quality of care for the patients would suffer. (p. 616) According to Beyea (2004), one of the serious consequences of a healthcare environment in which there is a moral problem is that the condition can be contagious.
Even if an individual may actually be considered as having high morale, it could be argued that by simply placing them in a healthcare environment in which employees are unwilling or unable to offer constructive criticisms or suggestions for improving the workplace, it may result in an environment in which all employees are equally unhappy. Now that the causes and consequences of staff morale problems in the healthcare industry have been established, the issue of how to resolve these issues must be considered.
As there is no single cause for poor morale, unfortunately, there is also no single cure for the situation. According to the Centres for Disease Control (2011) organizations that implement workplace health programs that are designed and implemented with respect to employee needs and interests are known to drastically improve morale within a healthcare workplace. However if an organization wishes to truly find a solution to endemic moral problems, the management team could implement the four-step program as outlined by Meheen (2010).
The first stage of improving the morale situation is to allow the healthcare workers to express their complaints which both acts as a means of employees to vent their anger and for management to recognize potential long term systemic problems within the organization. The second step involves offering opportunities for training and development that are both tailored to the current job role and potential future job role of the employees, which would ensure that mutually recognized realistic job expectations are set.
The third stage is to offer meaningful rewards for good workers to encourage individuals to achieve their personal goals and to inspire others to achieve their own goals. Finally, management should pay attention to the specific and various talents of the employees that they oversee to help capitalize on future job needs. This paper argued that although staff morale problems in the healthcare industry are problematic, there are multiple solutions available. When implemented in a meaningful way, not only do workers perform better but the quality of healthcare for patients also improves.
Beyea, S. (December, 2004) Employee Morale and patient Safety. AORN: Association of Operating Room Nurses. Gale Group [online] Available at http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0FSL/is_6_80/ai_n8579098/?tag=mantle_skin;content Accessed on August 4th 2011.
Cameron, M., Pearce, S. & Rogers, C. (2009) Management of Disruptive Behaviour within Nursing Work Environments: A Comprehensive Systematic Review of the Evidence. Australian Centre for Rural and Remote Evidence Based Practice, A Collaborating Centre of the Joanna Briggs Institute. JBI Library of Sysyematic Reviews. 7(15):615-678. [online] Available at http://faculty.fims.uwo.ca/koziol/671/lectures/Management%20of%20Disruptive%20Behaviour.pdf Accessed on August 4th 2011.
Centres For Disease Control (2011) Morale and Organization Reputation: Workplace Health Programs can improve morale and organization reputation (PP.27-28, 37-38) Content Source National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion . [online] Available at http://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/businesscase/benefits/morale.html Accessed on August 4th 2011.
Meheen, C (2010) How to Improve Workplace Morale. Livestrong.com. Reviewed by Cone, A (2010) [online] Available at http://www.livestrong.com/article/197976-how-to-improve-workplace-morale/ Accessed on August 4th 2011.