Patient care is very important in the health institutions. As a result, it is the task of such an institution to work and streamline its activities and actions to come up with a plan that will make achieving this goal possible (Katz-Navon, Naveh, & Stern, 2005, p. 1076). Among the activities in a healthcare institution that help realize this goal is the creation of a shared governance program. A shared governance program is used in a healthcare institution to develop culturally-sensitive framework that enables accountability and sustainability in decision-making processes that support patient care (Katz-Navon, Naveh, & Stern, 2005, p. 1076). On the other hand, all healthcare institutions have their own shared governance programs, and it is up to each of them to ensure that they have a shared governance program that is working (Yoder-Wise, 2013, p 329). In the case, coming up with a shared governance program is the core reason for this write-up. The program will explore different attributes and strategies to stand out from the rest and to show what a good shared governance program should entail.
Situational Assessment and Analysis
In a health institution, there are many factors that determine the working relationship between an organization and its staff. Among these vital factors are the policies and procedures set down by an organization which an organization’s employees are supposed to follow (Force, 2005, p. 338). As a result, the area that is identified and that needs change is the positive practice environment, and a tool that best fits this description is a shared governance program. According to (Force, 2005, p. 340), the vision, mission, and philosophy are very important to its success. In the shared program, it is important to stress on the importance of decentralized decision making that ensures that all people in the organization have a voice in an issue before a decision is passed. This will ensure that there are no complains after certain policies and procedures have been passed and that the employees are aware of them prior to their implementation.
A positive work environment involves more than one aspect to ensure that it is properly organized. As a result, when such an environment is being changed, all these factors are taken into consideration, and they include the management practices in an organization, education, occupation, health and safety, and support structures (Yoder-Wise, 2013, p 331). In relation to management practices, an organization should be committed to equal attitude and fair treatment for all employees and people in the organization, encourage open communication, show a demonstration of effective leadership skills, and uphold effective performance management systems among other factors (Latham, Hogan & Ringl, 2008, p. 27). For the support structures, an organization needs to improve a positive work environment by investing in a healthy environment that is non-hazardous (Latham, Hogan & Ringl, 2008, p. 32). In the shared governance program, an inclusion of both aspects, such as equal employee treatment and a healthy environment, is used. In addition, a good shared governance program engages support structures through fostering strong employment relations, promoting a healthy life-work balance, providing access to adequate equipment, and offering employment security and predictability to all staff (Latham, Hogan & Ringl, 2008, p. 34).
Without a positive work environment, patient safety and the well-being of employees is not guaranteed. As a result, changing the nature of a work environment results in a lot of benefits for the organization. Among the benefits that a healthcare organization reaps from such an environment are higher retention rates of employees, a higher level of autonomy, the advancement in employee autonomy, lower rates of absenteeism, and the effective teamwork (Weiner, 2009). The inclusion of the benefits will, however, need to be done in a careful manner as a way of making sure that they are reaped at the maximum.
On the other hand, a poor shared governance program can cost a healthcare institution dearly and cause it a lot of losses and inconveniences. To starter with, an organization in the healthcare system that has its nurses and physicians working in a negative work environment leads to a higher rate of job dissatisfaction (Ulrich, Buerhaus, Donelan, Norman, & Dittus, 2005, p. 392). As this negative aspect is realized, patients are not assured of their health, and the image of the organization severely dips its form. As the quality of care provided is comprised, the duty of nursing in the organization contracts, and in the end, the organization abuses the rights of both the employees and patients. Poor working environment can also lead to slower response rates and alertness of nurses in a healthcare institution. When this happens, patients are put at risk, because proper intervention methods may not be set up for them at the required times. In the end, some of them may succumb to the conditions they are suffering from, while others will take a longer time to heal (Ulrich et al., 2005, p. 393).
Strategy for Implementation
The program of shared governance will look to meet a number of objectives so that the organization will be at the right position. One of the objectives of the program will be to ensure that they receive a contribution from each organizational member that is being impacted by a change proposed. In the decision-making criteria, a lot of information and details are needed for a final and vital decision to be reached. As a result, the details contributed by all the staff members will make a decision to favor all members because most of the information used to step to the decision was provided by them. Another objective of the shared governance program is to make decisions that are long-term and that will not be contested. Some nurses in an organization may not be aware of a certain decision or the criteria that were used to reach them. As a result, if they realize that the decisions are impacting them, they may find room for contesting, and in the process, the decisions will face barriers and the expected change will not come out effectively.
In implementing the change, the management will follow a certain procedure to ensure that the shared governance program is embraced. First, the management will present it to the nurses and ask them to air their opinions about it. As they will give both negative and positive response, they will be noted and the relevant ones that will be agreed by most or all members will be taken into consideration. After re-evaluation of the program, the management will bring it back to them and ask them what they think about it. As they will agree to it, the management will look at barriers facilitators of the change and uphold them as much as possible. This will result in introducing the change officially to the organization and announcing its offset. In the implementation process, the management will engage several factors that include workplace advocacy, organizational ethics, economic issues, and management functions.
In addition, it is good to paint the picture of the future when implementing change in an organization. This is because a picture of the future will ensure that members of the organization align with what is expected from them. One of the ways in which the future is painted is through being clear of the future plans of the organization’s leadership (Yoder-Wise, 2013, p 332). As the employees will be aware of the plans, they will try to adapt to them so that they are able to fit in well and ensure that they form a part of the long-term goals of their organization. As a way of implementing the leadership strategy program, it is easier to get it working by holding leaders responsible (Latham, Hogan & Ringl, 2008, p. 36). In this case, leaders agree to take responsibility for their actions and decisions, and in the process, make their followers to do the same (Latham, Hogan & Ringl, 2008, p. 38). In the implementation stage, this aspect will play a vital role because employees in the organization will feel that they are equal to their leaders, and in the case that any of them messes, they will undergo similar repercussions just like their leaders.
In other instances, it may be hard for employees in an organization to follow a shared leadership program that has been implemented. As a result, it is up to the leaders to know what to do in the implementation phase of the program if they need it to succeed. To do this, establishing forums and groups to ensure that employees share the details of the program and to air their opinions about it will work well for the organization (Yoder-Wise, 2013, p 333). However, the groups and forums created should consider a number of factors, including the size of the group and members, to ensure that they are not biased and do not promote biasness. On the other hand, a focus on the objective of a program for implementation is very necessary. Focus on the objectives makes the leaders of an organization focus on the implementation phase of the program, while, at the same time, being seen as supporting it.
Evaluation of the Change
After implementation, evaluation of the change will follow. In the evaluation process, the management will be seeking to determine the nature of the change and the way it is settling into the organization. However, the management will need to use several measures to check its credibility and worth. The measures that the management will use include staff response to the program, the efficiency of operations before and after the change, staff morale, and patient responsiveness to care and treatment. If all these factors turn out in a positive way, the management will be assured that the program that was designed and implemented is working in the right direction.
Success for the program will be determined by the values that will be achieved from the measures taken. For example, if there is a significant recorded improvement, the management will know that the program is working well and the change that was implemented has turned out to be a success. The success of the program will make the organization adopt such a strategy in the future or in other policies and issues changes that will assist the organization to move forward. In addition, change is also evaluated by the success of previous programs and the way they were received. If the programs concerning leadership or any other aspect are not seen as effective, it is most likely that the program will also not be received well. On the other hand, if other programs received a good reception, then the management will be assured that the same might happen to the current program.
The program will explore different attributes and strategies to stand out from the rest and to show what a good shared governance program should entail. In a concluding manner, a shared program is essential for all healthcare organizations to promote change and discipline within the organization and among employees. However, for the change to a positive work environment to be fully realized, there are a lot of potential and existing barriers that an organization is subjected to. The same will apply in the shared governance program, because before implementing it, a lot of limitations will have been crossed. This is a very strong facilitator. On the other hand, it can act as a barrier to change. The environment impact changes in the sense that the activities of an organization may not allow the change to be carried out effectively as it is planned.