[ANSWERED 2023] Leaders of organizations are charged with solving problems every day. Think back to an organizational challenge or decision in your company (or in one that you wish to research).

Written By: Dan Palmer, RN

Leaders of organizations are charged with solving problems every day. Think back to an

Leaders of organizations are charged with solving problems every day. Think back to an organizational challenge or decision in your company (or in one that you wish to research).

Using Problem Solving to Address Challenges

Leaders of organizations are charged with solving problems every day. Think back to an organizational challenge or decision in your company (or in one that you wish to research). This should be a decision that the organization\’s leaders made. Address the following in a paper:

  • Provide a brief history/background of the organizational challenge.
  • Explain how the problem was resolved, using the steps from the problem-solving process presented in this module. If certain steps were skipped, name them and explain why.
  • Consider how you/the organization might have approached the problem differently. Again, use the steps from the problem-solving process.
  • Hypothesize whether the approach might have had a different outcome.

Assignment Requirements:

  • Your paper should be 4-5 pages in length, not counting the required title and references pages.

Expert Answer and Explanation

Addressing Challenges

The healthcare setting is continuously changing to incorporate more functionality and roles that nurses have to play to improve their overall performance. The demand for health is constantly increasing and the need for the facility to meet these demands is also on the rise. With the high rise of everything and the struggle of the facility to meet these demands, there are challenges that the institution is likely to face that can negatively impact the concept of medication dissemination (Abbasi, 2016).

In the face of adversity, healthcare leaders have to devise various ways to mitigate the prevailing issues and ensure that medical care maintains its quality and the Patients are satisfied with the care that they are receiving. One of the major challenges in my organization is the burden of preventable medical errors that have resulted in numerous cost implications, potential lawsuits, and utilization of unnecessary resources that would have been used to support another patient.

The burden of Preventable Medical Errors

The organization has had an increase with the overall challenge of medical error when the number of COVID-19 patients began to increase. The pandemic which rapidly spread from March onwards affected how nurses and other medical professionals interact with Patients and altered the normal culture of operations (Rahman et al., 2020).

The normal interactions between healthcare professionals and patients to improve the medication process reduced with measures being taken to safeguard the lives of the patients. Due to the high number of patients, a limited supply of nurses, and reduced interaction between the nurse and patients as a form of CVID-19 protocol, there was a gradual increase in medical errors within the facility.

Some of the main encountered errors include the wrong dosage, misdiagnosis, and delivering medical intervention to the wrong patient (Rahman et al., 2020). The high number of patients led to increasing paper work which overwhelmed the nurses in operations.

The burden is attributed to a number of factors that were observed within the facility. To begin with, some of the nurses were afraid of the issue and resorted to resign or take unpaid leave until the issue was mitigated. The remaining nurses had to work extra hours to combat the increase in the number of patients and meet the expectations or needs of the patients.

Nurse burnout, fatigue, and overall exhaustion can be attributed to these medical errors experienced within the facility over the time that the disease has been present (Rahman et al., 2020). Similarly, the fear to get close to the patient and offer a holistic approach to care affects how the diagnosis proves was conducted and the details that were captured from the patient.

Nurses were supposed to put on protective and preventive attires which limited the movement, speech synthesis, and physical tests conducted on a patient. The issues provided a major challenge within the facility and it warranted leadership intervention to help mitigate the rising number of medical errors.

Resolution of the Problem

The organization through the leadership and management intervention came up with measures to regulate the increasing number of medical errors. In order to ensure that the problem was existent and emanated from the perceived causes, a select committee was established and tasked with investigating and identifying the problem at hand. The committee was then to offer a report detailing the problem definition, and its implications (Mileder, 2017).

Similarly, the committee was expected to conduct a root cause analysis for the potential issues that are likely to course the existing challenges. Some of the potential causes identified include strained nurse-to-patient ratios, fear of the nurses to contract the disease which limits their interaction with the patients, misdiagnosis, dosage errors, and wrong medication.

The deliberation led to the identification of potential solutions to help mitigate the increasing mortality rates and patient dissatisfaction. The committee deliberately on all the possible solutions both major and minor. The solutions were divided into internal and external where the internal solutions focused on the aspects that the organization could do, while the external entities are focused on the factors that are not under the control of the organization but can be mitigated (Mileder, 2017).

From the possible solutions. A set of best solutions were selected and included the creation of an effective policy, staff education, adoption of technology to improve interaction while mitigating physical contact, and temporarily outsource nurses to aid with the shortages. These measures are critical to the facility and also improve the overall performance. The committee scheduled a series of events within which the selected intervention was to be implemented.

The timeline of events was selected so that it would have little to no impact on the nature of care dissemination (Formica et al., 2018). After the successful implementation results were to be analyzed using feedback from the patients, reduced mortality rates, and an overall reduction in medical errors experienced within the facility.

Post an explanation of whether psychotherapy has a biological basis. Explain how culture, religion, and socioeconomics might influence one’s perspective on the value of psychotherapy treatments

Alternative Approach

While the organization effectively used the steps from the problem-solving processes, there are other sections that were not effective and the options that were made did not lead to an effective outcome. For instance, the implementation of the selected solutions did not prioritize urgent interventions, rather implemented all the processes concurrently which led to confusion and increased implementation time (Halpern, Truog, & Miller, 2020).

The definition of the problem was attained effectively but there would be proper prioritization of the solutions to have the short-term intervention implemented first to mitigate the urgent and crucial aspects then followed by the long-term solutions. Utilizing a lot of time on long term intervention while the problem is still in progress would not be effective. Similarly, incorporating the aspect of patient safety in the solutions is also a key element that should be implemented within the plan.

Potential Different Outcome

Had the facility prioritized urgent and short-term intervention first, the approach would have had a different outcome than the one that was produced. While the final outcome was effective and solved the issues presented by the entity, it took a much longer time frame to complete (Halpern, Truog, & Miller, 2020). Taking a different approach would have ensured immediate intervention and better outcomes. Nurses would have been provided with important training and sensitized on how to improve their interactions with patients without having to worry about the disease.

Conclusion

The health care setting is one of the most volatile and dynamic sectors in the world. The changing dynamics make it difficult to have policies that are all-encompassing and might affect how the operations are made. Dealing with challenges and healthcare issues requires the intervention of leaders and prompt adherence to better problem-solving mechanisms. Each decision has a potential outcome and a resultant consequence on the patient. Through the use of the problem-solving process, it is easier for the facility to make informed decisions on the best solutions that can be undertaken to mitigate the prevailing issues.

References

Abbasi, J. (2016). Headline-grabbing study brings attention back to medical errors. Jama316(7), 698-700.

Formica, D., Sultana, J., Cutroneo, P. M., Lucchesi, S., Angelica, R., Crisafulli, S., … & Trifirò, G. (2018). The economic burden of preventable adverse drug reactions: a systematic review of observational studies. Expert opinion on drug safety17(7), 681-695.

Halpern, S. D., Truog, R. D., & Miller, F. G. (2020). Cognitive bias and public health policy during the COVID-19 pandemic. Jama324(4), 337-338.

Mileder, L. P. (2017). Medical error and patient safety in the spotlight. Wiener klinische Wochenschrift129(21-22), 852-853.

Rahman, S., Singh, K., Dhingra, S., Charan, J., Sharma, P., Islam, S., … & Haque, M. (2020). The double burden of the COVID-19 pandemic and polypharmacy on geriatric population–Public health implications. Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management16, 1007.

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FAQs

What are the challenges of leadership?/ what are the 5 leadership challenges?

Leadership can be an incredibly rewarding experience, but it also comes with many challenges. Some of the most common challenges of leadership include:

  1. Managing people: A leader is responsible for managing and motivating their team to achieve their goals. This can be difficult, as each individual has their own unique strengths, weaknesses, and motivations.
  2. Making tough decisions: Leaders are often called upon to make tough decisions that may not be popular with everyone. They must be able to weigh the pros and cons of each decision and choose the best course of action for the organization.
  3. Managing change: Leaders must be able to manage change effectively, whether it is implementing new policies or adapting to external factors. They must be able to communicate changes to their team and help them adjust.
  4. Inspiring others: Leaders must be able to inspire and motivate their team to achieve their goals. They must be able to communicate a vision and create a sense of purpose that motivates their team to work towards a common goal.
  5. Building relationships: Leaders must be able to build strong relationships with their team members, stakeholders, and other key stakeholders. This requires strong communication skills, empathy, and the ability to listen and respond to feedback.
  6. Managing time and resources: Leaders must be able to manage their time and resources effectively to achieve their goals. This requires strong organizational skills and the ability to prioritize tasks.
  7. Continuous learning: Leaders must be able to continuously learn and adapt to new challenges and opportunities. This requires a growth mindset and a willingness to learn from both successes and failures.

7 steps of problem solving and decision making

Problem solving and decision making are integral skills in various aspects of life, including professional, personal, and academic settings. The following are seven steps that can guide the process of problem solving and decision making:

  1. Identify and Define the Problem:
    • Clearly articulate the problem or decision that needs to be addressed. Define the issue in specific terms, focusing on the key elements that require attention. Ensure a thorough understanding of the situation.
  2. Gather Information:
    • Collect relevant information and data related to the problem. Identify the factors that contribute to the issue and seek a comprehensive understanding of the context. This step involves research, analysis, and consultation with relevant stakeholders.
  3. Generate Possible Solutions:
    • Brainstorm and create a list of potential solutions or alternatives. Encourage creativity and consider various perspectives. Aim to generate a range of options that address the underlying issues identified in the problem.
  4. Evaluate Options:
    • Assess the pros and cons of each potential solution. Consider the feasibility, potential outcomes, and implications of each option. Prioritize the alternatives based on their effectiveness, resource requirements, and alignment with goals and values.
  5. Make a Decision:
    • Select the most suitable solution based on the evaluation of options. Make a clear and informed decision, taking into account the information gathered, potential risks, and desired outcomes. Ensure that the decision aligns with the overall objectives and values.
  6. Implement the Decision:
    • Put the chosen solution into action. Develop an implementation plan and allocate necessary resources. Communicate the decision to relevant stakeholders and ensure that everyone involved understands their roles and responsibilities. Monitor the progress of the implementation.
  7. Evaluate the Results:
    • Assess the outcomes of the decision and implementation. Evaluate whether the desired results have been achieved and analyze any unexpected consequences. Reflect on the effectiveness of the chosen solution and use the insights gained to inform future problem-solving and decision-making processes.

Problem Solving Example:

Problem: A manufacturing company is experiencing a high rate of defects in its products, leading to customer complaints and increased production costs.

  1. Identify and Define the Problem:
    • Clearly define the problem: a high rate of defects in the products.
  2. Gather Information:
    • Collect data on the production process, machinery, and materials. Interview production staff and examine customer complaints to understand the root causes.
  3. Generate Possible Solutions:
    • Brainstorm potential solutions, such as upgrading machinery, improving quality control processes, or enhancing employee training.
  4. Evaluate Options:
    • Assess the pros and cons of each solution. Consider the cost, time required for implementation, and the expected impact on defect rates.
  5. Make a Decision:
    • Decide to invest in new machinery with advanced quality control features, as it aligns with the long-term goal of improving product quality.
  6. Implement the Decision:
    • Purchase and install the new machinery. Provide training to the production team on its use and maintenance.
  7. Evaluate the Results:
    • Monitor defect rates over the next few months. Analyze customer feedback and production costs. If defects decrease and customer satisfaction improves, the decision was effective.

Read the case study presented at the end of Chapter 10, which begins “The elderly patient resided at the nursing home for almost a year before she died at the hospital.”

Decision Making Example:

Decision: A manager must choose between two equally qualified candidates for a key project leadership role.

  1. Identify and Define the Decision:
    • The decision is selecting the project leader from two equally qualified candidates.
  2. Gather Information:
    • Review resumes, interview performance, and gather feedback from team members who interacted with the candidates.
  3. Generate Possible Solutions:
    • Consider the strengths and weaknesses of each candidate. Explore potential factors such as leadership style, communication skills, and relevant experience.
  4. Evaluate Options:
    • Assess how each candidate aligns with the project’s requirements, team dynamics, and the organization’s values. Consider potential long-term contributions and growth within the company.
  5. Make a Decision:
    • Choose the candidate whose leadership style aligns best with the project’s needs and team dynamics, demonstrating potential for growth within the organization.
  6. Implement the Decision:
    • Communicate the decision to the selected candidate and the entire team. Provide necessary onboarding and support to ensure a smooth transition into the new role.
  7. Evaluate the Results:
    • Monitor the project’s progress under the new leadership. Gather feedback from team members and assess the impact of the decision on project outcomes. If the project is successful and the team is cohesive, the decision was effective.

History of Organizational Development (OD):

Organizational Development (OD) is a field of study and practice that focuses on enhancing organizational effectiveness and individual well-being. The history of OD can be traced through key milestones and developments:

  1. 1940s – Birth of OD:
    • The roots of OD can be traced back to the 1940s and the work of social scientists Kurt Lewin, Ronald Lippitt, and others. Lewin is often regarded as the “father of OD” for his pioneering work in group dynamics and action research.
  2. 1950s – T-Group Training:
    • The 1950s saw the emergence of Training Groups (T-Groups), which were laboratory training sessions designed to improve interpersonal skills and group dynamics. These sessions aimed to enhance communication and collaboration within organizations.
  3. 1960s – Expansion of OD Concepts:
    • OD gained prominence in the 1960s as organizations sought ways to adapt to changing environments. The field expanded with the introduction of concepts like sensitivity training, team building, and process consultation.
  4. 1962 – First OD Conference:
    • The first OD conference, organized by the National Training Laboratories (NTL), took place in 1962. This event brought together professionals interested in applying behavioral science principles to organizational settings.
  5. 1970s – Systemic Approach and Interventions:
    • The 1970s marked a shift toward a systemic approach to OD. Organizations began to view themselves as complex systems, leading to the development of various interventions such as large-group interventions, socio-technical systems, and total quality management.
  6. 1980s – Globalization and Technology Impact:
    • The 1980s brought challenges posed by globalization and rapid technological advancements. OD practitioners started addressing issues related to mergers, acquisitions, and the impact of technology on organizational structures.
  7. 1990s – Diversity and Inclusion:
    • OD in the 1990s increasingly focused on diversity and inclusion. Organizations recognized the importance of fostering inclusive environments and managing diversity as a strategic advantage.
  8. 2000s – Agile and Adaptive Organizations:
    • The 2000s witnessed a growing emphasis on agility and adaptability in response to rapidly changing business landscapes. Concepts like agile methodologies and learning organizations gained prominence within the OD field.
  9. 2010s – Digital Transformation:
    • The rise of digital transformation became a key theme in OD during the 2010s. Organizations grappled with leveraging technology for improved efficiency, collaboration, and innovation.
  10. 2020s – Remote Work and Well-Being:
    • The COVID-19 pandemic in the early 2020s accelerated trends toward remote work, prompting OD practitioners to focus on virtual team dynamics, employee well-being, and resilience in the face of uncertainty.

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