Customer service, otherwise known as the patient satisfaction, has become a critical benchmark of modern healthcare. It is helpful from a business and reputation perspective while strongly contributing to positive patient outcomes. Management in the industry has shifted its focus towards patient satisfaction as a key measure of the clinic’s stability. This paper will seek to investigate a decrease in customer service scores associated with staff courtesy, friendliness, and competence at the Care agency.
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Attainment of Low Scores
Low scores on the scale of customer service have been attained due to the poor attention of staff to their patients. In both scenario’s the customers were treated in an abrupt manner, citing that the clinic is busy. This led to a lack of understanding on behalf of the nurses, and patients’ concerns were not adequately addressed. Furthermore, this distant approach led to procedural errors such as forgetfulness to record vital signs, lack of interest in patient history, and medication administration error. There was a feeling that staff was attempting to quickly move on from the patient, postponing actual treatment.
The six elements of system leadership perspective in terms of quality are: working together, eliminating the chain of command, honest communication, open access to information, a focus on procedures, and learning from experience. Everyone in the company should work together to achieve a common goal, and this creates an opportunity for individual success. The chain of command should be put aside, and management should strive to empower subordinates. Communication based on honesty and empathy is vital for cohesiveness. Access to information should remain open to those who need it, regardless of hierarchy. The focus should be on improving the process to optimize the complex system of interdependence in a company. Finally, learning experiences are most important, despite success or failure since it is the knowledge gathered that allows for future growth.
Transformational leadership is a strategy focused on encouragement and empowerment of followers in order to achieve a common objective. It is a value system which is established through a close relationship between a leader and subordinates as the process of mentoring and modeling helps to introduce innovative ideas and organizational culture (Boamah, Laschinger, Wong, & Clarke, 2017). Creating a supporting and caring environment for both staff and patients as a basic aspect of holistic nursing practice. This can be established by promoting certain values of respect and compassion for patients and peers, fostering a climate of care in the clinic. Through transformational leadership, a model of healthcare delivery is established, allowing to produce care for staff, patient, and family (Gallison & Kester, 2018). Transformational leadership is conducive to creating a unitary consciousness.
McKinsey’s 7s model has the key tools and variables for competent strategy implementation. The model presents that there are a series of interactive factors which center around shared values. Organizational strategy, systems, structure, staff, skills, and style are present on the outside. These aspects are inherent to an organization’s ability to change and require cooperability to drive any meaningful innovation (Channon & Caldart, 2015). A leader can support the process by being open to change and providing necessary support to the staff and organization, both in terms of practical tools as well as emotional support. Leadership skills such as listening to feedback, inspiring innovation, and critical analysis are present in a significant change process such as described.
The 7s model allows to identify gaps that require attention in the organization to improve the performance or align to a specific value. The framework is a strategic assessment which is inherently useful in restructuring and changing an organizational climate or system. The organizational culture, patient and employee activities or interactions are critical to forming a specific climate. The model’s primary purpose of alignment to evaluate employee abilities, goals and values about patient-centered care are helpful in a healthcare setting (Williams, 2017).
Course of Action
The key stakeholders involved in this intervention are patients, nursing staff, and clinic management. External stakeholders such as the media, healthcare agencies or state legislature may in involved indirectly as well. In order to have a successful change management program, engagement with all stakeholders is critical during every stage of the program. It is important to gather input and communicate guideline changes with a transitional period of time and appropriate support (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 2018).
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The steps to designing a new process to improve patient satisfaction are:
- Gather input and collect data on patient dissatisfaction.
- Provide an opportunity for staff to voice opinions and justifications for any inappropriate conduct without fear of retaliation or punishment.
- Identify causes and influencing factors which contribute to this issue. Attempt to isolate the problem.
- Apply transformational leadership and the McKinsey’s 7s model.
- Create necessary guidelines, supporting material, and provide appropriate tools for the staff.
- Implement administrative measures to reduce the workload on staff such as hiring additional personnel or extending work hours to provide enough time for each patient.
- Monitor behavior and evaluate change over a period of time.
This paper described how the management of the Care agency could address a decrease in customer service due courtesy and friendliness of the staff. Patient satisfaction is a critical indicator of clinic stability. Therefore, leadership and change management should focus on increasing it by creating an environment of care in the workplace. Through transformational leadership and McKinsey’s 7s model, appropriate tools are provided for the staff to show courtesy and dedicate time to customer service.
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2018). Designing and implementing Medicaid disease and care management programs. Section 2: Engaging stakeholders in a care management program. Web.
Boamah, S. A., Laschinger, H. K., Wong, C., & Clarke, S. (2018). Effect of transformational leadership on job satisfaction and patient safety outcomes. Nursing Outlook, 66(2), 180-189. Web.
Channon, D. F., & Caldart, A. A. (2015). McKinsey 7S model. Wiley Encyclopedia of Management, 1-1. Web.
Gallison, B., & Kester, W. T. (2018). Connecting holistic nursing practice with relationship-based care: A community hospitals journey. Nurse Leader, 16(3), 181-185. Web.
Williams, N. J. (2017). Defining shared values in patient-centered care: A case study. Web.