Cultural Leadership Strategies
1) Write a paper (1,000-1,250 words) that compares and contrasts the strategies and applications of the dynamic cultural leadership model with the omnibus leadership model. An effective health care organization must be committed to improving the health of the community. Discuss how the following issues are addressed by each of the leadership models:
a) Clarity of mission.
b) Education of all organizational levels including governance.
c) Workplace should reflect the community it serves.
d) Organizational redesign to meet recently enacted Healthcare Reform.
e) Cultivation of high-potential employees.
f) Development of succession plans.
g) Reduction of turnover.
h) Processes to effectively implement new strategies.
i) Gender, religious, ethnic, and racial differences.
2) Prepare this assignment according to the APA guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center. An abstract is not required.
3) This assignment uses a grading rubric. Instructors will be using the rubric to grade the assignment; therefore, students should review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the assignment criteria and expectations for successful completion of the assignment.
40.0 %Compare and Contrast Strategies of the Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model With the Omnibus Leadership Model (Demonstrates thorough knowledge of the dynamic cultural leadership model and their implications. Clearly answers the questions and develops a very strong rationale. Introduces appropriate examples.)
30.0 %Integrates Information From Outside Resources Into the Body of Paper (Supports main points with references, examples, and full explanations of how they apply. Thoughtfully, analyzes, evaluates, and describes major points of the criteria.)
7.0 %Assignment Development and Purpose (Thesis and/or main claim are comprehensive. The essence of the paper is contained within the thesis. Thesis statement makes the purpose of the paper clear.)
8.0 %Argument Logic and Construction (Clear and convincing argument presents a persuasive claim in a distinctive and compelling manner. All sources are authoritative.)
5.0 %Mechanics of Writing (Includes spelling, punctuation, grammar, language use.)( Writer is clearly in command of standard, written, academic English.)
5.0 %Paper Format (Use of appropriate style for the major and assignment.) (All format elements are correct.)
5.0 %Research Citations (In-text citations for paraphrasing and direct quotes, and reference page listing and formatting, as appropriate to assignment and style.) (In-text citations and a reference page are complete and correct. The documentation of cited sources is free of error.)
Johnson (2009) notes that “culture is a learned system of knowledge, behavior, attitudes, beliefs, values, and norms that a group of people shares” (p. 161). This definition implies that within a given community of interactive human beings, a plethora of culture traits emerge: habits, mind sets, different languages, values, beliefs, practices, family and social relationships, and behaviors. This idea of community includes the community of employees that exists within each particular business, including a hospital. These traits can be associated with race, ethnicity, religion, socioeconomic status, educational attainment, occupation or profession, workplace, residential locale, generation, gender, and a host of other circumstances that define a group of persons with common sets of learned behavior.
Most people belong to more than one culture (e.g., home, workplace, and neighborhood). These multiple cultures require different and sometimes conflicting responses in order for the individual to navigate within them. Consequently, people find themselves conforming to culturally determined behavior that responds to and that fits the circumstances in which they find themselves in at any given time. Using a non-medical metaphor to illustrate the point, imagine a group of robust young men playing a spirited basketball game on an outdoor court. During the game there were loud outbursts of vulgar language, rough-housing, and foul play, normal behavior in the culture of the circumstance. The same group of young men, after the game, decided to visit a buddy of theirs who was recently hospitalized with severe injuries. Entering the hospital, they adjusted their mannerisms to fit the quiet atmosphere and circumstance, a behavior adjustment required by the hospital culture.
The Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model
Both the Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model and the Omnibus Leadership Model focus on organizational culture. Effective leadership at all levels of the organization is the catalyst that gave birth to the Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model. Overall success is based on leadership at three managerial levels: personal level, team level, and the organizational level. One perspective is that these three levels represent senior management (personal), department heads and support staff (team), and governance or board (organizational).
The strategy for success involves focusing on knowledge and skills so as to empower the total organization to achieve its goals, which allows the organization to successfully compete in an environment that constantly changes to meet challenges. That is, the ability to prepare for and meet challenges defines the organization’s ability to survive. The Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model stresses leadership team assessment, communication improvement, strategic planning, decision-making alignment, employment enhancement, and learning organization improvement. Johnson (2009) purports leaders who follow this sequence of leadership steps on a constant cycle have the best potential to deal with environmental change while building an effective organization culture.
Many real-life leadership activities support the Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model, beginning with governance membership. Board members set the stage for organization culture. Boards tend to pick members based upon their business knowledge as well as their understanding support of the missions and values of the hospital. In the past, board members were often high-profile community leaders who served out of the goodness of their hearts or as a matter of being in the limelight, but with no applicable business knowledge. Over time, such members were seen to be inappropriate for addressing the ever-changing challenges that face the ever-changing health care industry. More recently, boards have invited leaders with true business acumen in order for the organization to grow and prosper.
Perhaps the single most important impact on organization culture is selection of senior management. The individuals selected should have the experience and the ability to recognize and to assess the talents of the organization’s leadership team. In addition, senior management, after completing a team qualities assessment, must be able to align the team to fully utilize its diversity of styles, skills, experience, and ability in order for the organization to maintain a vigorous opportunistic approach to change. In order for an organization to be effective, shared beliefs and shared assumptions are a must.
Understanding factors that influence culture is imperative. Johnson (2009) elaborates: Culture is harder to change than climate, because climate is not stable over time. Whether employees are happy today (a climate indicator) is of temporal importance, while cultural factors, such as processes, incentive systems, communication, understanding of goals, and how the organization works to achieve goals, are more meaningful and important.
The Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model stresses a sense of balance by focusing the knowledge and skills of organizational leaders and empowering the total organization to accomplish its mission. This balance is brought about by the periodic, or cyclical, process of:
• Constant assessment of leaderships ability and skills; and
• Focusing on communication improvement, strategic planning, decision making, and learning organization improvement.
To be effective, the sequence must be repeated based upon the rate of change in the environment.
As a retiredhealth care executive noted:
My experience has been that even though today’s leadership model somewhat mirrors the Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model, the cyclical sequence has not been repeated often. This is probably due to the fact that change has not been as frequent or as imposing in the past as they are today. The future changes and uncertainty presented by the new Health Care Reform Bill, of course, will require more sensitivity to and awareness of a variety of change mandates. (B. Dickens, personal communication, June, 2010)
The Omnibus Leadership Model
The Omnibus Leadership Model places its emphasis on the values associated with intrinsic goal-directed behavior. This model raises the issue of whether leaders are born or made. In contrasting the two models with regard to evaluating leaders, the Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model focuses on the skills and knowledge of its leadership to envision and accomplish goals in reaction to challenges and change.
Traditional leadership models analyzes outcomes and business processes as they are affected by specific leadership traits, such as personal characteristics or behavior, to determine effectiveness. On the other hand, the Omnibus Leadership Model takes from previous literature in the field of leadership and provides a different outlook for evaluating leaders. Traditional models took into account variables, or constructs, that explain past leadership actions, whereas the Omnibus model uses these constructs to help predict leadership success. The three major constructs as explained in the text are:
1. Higher Order Construct: Principles and values based on factors such as family, spiritual teachings, and education.
2. Individual Culture Construct: Traits embedded in the psyche through broad societal influences such as race and ethnicity.
3. Environmental Construct: The availability and effectiveness of communication to translate and disseminate the leadership’s message.
Thus, the Omnibus Leadership Model considers the forces that influence the leadership of the organization to actually taking action as well as how those forces predict the best approaches for effecting change in response to various challenges.
The concept of leadership is complex. Does effectiveness of leadership in itself determine whether a leader has been successful? Consider a health care leader whose organization has been financially successful: On the surface and from the perspective of financial success, most would consider this individual a good leader. However, if the community his institution serves has not become healthier, eliminated disparities, and been more productive, can the leader truly be considered successful?
A similar experience previously discussed concerned an inner-city hospital faced with closure due to the exodus of doctors fleeing to the suburbs. The leader was faced with strong community opposition because of the potential loss of jobs in the inner city. Faced with this dilemma, the leader finally decided that the primary effort was to prevent the loss of jobs and his secondary effort was to reinforce a mechanism, exemplifying team leadership to create a response that both the community and the governance would approve. The fact that the leader was successful in meeting the community need to save jobs, even with the relocation of the hospital, would have made him a good leader in respect to the Omnibus Leadership Model. This is a classic case where leadership considered the importance of the values of others.
That example took place over 35 years ago. Today, the relocated hospital is viable and considered an outstanding medical facility. Incidentally, its response to the inner-city’s concern about loss of jobs was the creation of a hospital-owned transportation system that transported inner-city workers to and from the medical campus.
The impact of external and internal cultures must be considered as health care leadership adopts leadership styles. In health care, community cultures and organizational cultures may often dictate which style, Dynamic Cultural Leadership Model or Omnibus Leadership Model, would best determine the viability of a medical facility and determine if the leadership is good. In the long run, it is not an either-or situation as to which leadership model is embraced; what matters is that senior management is successfully able to manage culture in the health care organization.
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