FOCUS OF MANAGEMENT: SELF, UNIT/TEAM, AND ORGANIZATION
Effective healthcare management involves exercising professional judg- ment and skills and carrying out the aforementioned managerial functions at three levels: self, unit/team, and organization wide. First and foremost, the individual manager must be able to effectively manage himself or herself. This means managing time, information, space, and materials; being responsive and following through with peers, supervisors, and clients; maintaining a positive attitude and high motivation; and keeping understanding of management techniques and substantive issues of healthcare management current. Managing yourself also means developing and applying appropriate technical, interpersonal, and conceptual skills and competences and being comfortable with them, in order to be able to effectively move to the next level that of supervising others.
The second focus of management is the unit/team work level. The expertise of the manager at this level involves managing others in terms of effectively completing the work. Regardless of whether you are a senior manager, mid-level manager, or supervisor, you will be “supervising” others as expected in your assigned role. This responsibility includes assigning work tasks, review and modification of assignments, monitoring and review of individual performance, and carrying out the management functions described earlier to ensure excellent delivery of services. This focal area is where the actual work gets done. Performance reflects the interaction of the manager and the employee, and it is incumbent on the manager to do what is needed to shape the performance of individual employees at this level.
The third management focus is at the organizational level. This focal area reflects the fact that managers must work together as part of the larger organization to ensure organizational level performance and organizational viability. In other words, the success of the organization depends upon the success of its individual parts, and effective collaboration is needed to ensure that this occurs. The range of clinical and nonclinical activities that occur within a healthcare organization requires that managers who head individual units work closely with other unit managers to provide services. Sharing of information, collaboration, and communication are essential for success. The hierarchy looks to the contribution of each supervised unit as it pertains to the whole. Individual managers’ contributions to the overall performance of the organization in terms of various performance measures such as cost, quality, satisfaction, and access are important and measured.