Case Study: Dr. Perry Was Informed by His Receptionist

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¶ … Dr. Perry was informed by his receptionist that the staff morale at the Cromwell hospital was going low. It was suggested by the same source that the staff had no animosity to Dr. Perry but did not care to follow up with their work and were not motivated to attend to billing, cancellations and other follow up that they were expected to perform. Dr. Perry was acutely aware that he has n training in people skills; a draw back that he feels is the reason for not confronting the staff and taking decisive action. The problem was seen by the doctor as being two fold: One was that the practice was growing and the Staff, though well paid and in the top level for the situation, were despaired because of the gap in income. The paradox was that staff at a practitioner known to be hard was working better.

The problem is also the fact that the doctor has employed Assistants, Hygienists, receptionists and technicians who are indispensable for the business and expected to bring in the necessary revenue by their activities along with the doctor. Dr. Perry has already given all possible emoluments and all possible concessions to his staff. His one consideration to fetch more revenue by making the existing staff productive, or finding an alternate so that the business could use the full use of the employee ability and increase business is rooted to the use of remuneration as a means of achieving this. Dr. Perry therefore is interested in sharing some of the profits with his workers but has a dilemma as to how to go about it and what is the best approach. In reality the problem is more complex and Dr. Perry has to examine if the wages are really the issue. (Richard Ivey School of Business, n. d.)

2) Problem Identification

The issue as can be seen from a prima facie examination is that there is a concern about the organizational effectiveness. Te objective of this problem solving attempt it has to be acknowledged is simply making Dr. Perry's Clinic more effective in other words we are concerned with the organizations effectiveness. The original definition of the word effectiveness in this case was the definition that the extent to which the organization was able to achieve its stated goals. However this goal theory has fallen to disuse in a modern context. (McShane; Glinow; Ann, 2009)

The issue then could be asked if Dr. Perry did have a goal. That would open the eyes to how the institution functioned. What was the goal and mission that was set for each year to be achieved, in terms of revenue, and other achievements? What part of the revenue was set aside for improving the workplace and what was done to see that there was 'something for the staff' to look forward to? There is nothing to show that such a mission and vision statement existed for the firm. We cannot therefore blame the entire problem to be analyzed solely on the staff issue. Nothing in the given report shows that these discussed issues were also addressed earlier by Dr. Perry. The case shows that Dr. Perry was a just and very liberal employer who gave free time and understood the needs of his staff and was not cantankerous. He also is shown to be willing to take the employees into confidence and share profits and discuss issues with them. He is also thinking of making the hygienists as independent professionals. (Richard Ivey School of Business, n. d.)

The fact emerges that:

1. The doctor has not made a concrete analysis of his practice and set a road map with a through analysis of the paradigms that would have given him the idea of where his business and his staff were leading each day.

2. The doctor did not in theory find if the revenue sharing would help his cause and if he must at all share revenue with his staff.

3. The question is if the revenue shared would eat into the profit without bringing the desired result and create a liability?

4. Or are there alternate methods of motivation like converting the employees to freelancers in which case will they be retained and what will be the implications?

5. What other models can the doctor consider in order to motivate the staff without or with the revenue sharing process?

6. How can the staff be motivated and what will be the implications?

3) 8 Step Case Analysis Process

The 8 step process was outlined by the American Management Association --AMA and is considered in solving the problem of Dr. Perry. This process will use three stages and within that an eight step analysis to solve any problem. To do that for the case of Dr. Perry would mean solving the dilemma of the staffing issues.

Step 1 -- Review the case and identify the relevant facts

Dr. Perry was not unpopular with the workers. Therefore the problem lies elsewhere and not with the employer. On the other hand the doctor has a feeling of inadequacy about his people management skills. This is also considered by him to be a cause of the problem at the workplace.

a) the major problem is that the staffs are not motivated to attend to their work in a more befitting manner and they seem to show indifference.

b) This is observed for all the staff, which according to the reporter Sandi Receptionist (Richard Ivey School of Business, n. d.) was the case with the whole establishment.

c) One of the solutions that the doctor was considering was the motivation with sharing of profits with the staff thus motivation being created by the consideration. This idea was not Dr. Perry's but a sketchy recollection of a lecture and is a scheme that is not backed with full knowledge. This idea is the second problem because it has blocked all other roads and it is not complete.

Step 2 - Determining the Root Problem

There appears no concrete proof that the problem lies with emoluments alone, because it is established that Dr. Perry has already given all possible emoluments and all possible concessions to his staff. (Richard Ivey School of Business, n. d.) in other words the dentists who do better than him in the same place are hard and their staff seems to be dexterous. Is Dr. Perry too lenient? These questions if seen with the proper perspectives of employee motivation could provide the answer to the major question: "What must the doctor do to get the staff performance high?"

Step 3 - Identifying the Problem Components

1. The personnel management problem that Dr. Perry admits he has namely the lack of training in dealing with people may be the main problem although on the surface the staffs are cordial to him. (Richard Ivey School of Business, n. d.) Management could take on many dimensions and one of the problems could be that the doctor has been taken for granted by the staff. In other words nothing by way of leadership and motivation seem to stem from the Doctor. He must therefore be acquainted with principles of personnel management for which he must spend some time in study. It is doubtful if increasing remuneration alone can have an effect without the change in managerial approach by the Doctor.

2. The root problem thus is the method of increasing the productivity of the staff or creating a system that could motivate the staff into performing better. Since the process necessitates that all alternatives have to be analyzed the doctor's idea of sharing revenue is one of the alternative.

Step 4 - Generating Alternatives

The alternatives for this case can be made primarily using employee cooperation and motivation as the doctor seems to have gone a little deep into the matter with the idea. Further modern theorists who believe that the modern capitalist system has undergone vast changes and the traditional concepts of employment have all become obsolete. Employers look out for more flexibility and accommodative modes of production from employees while on the other hand the collective representation and bargaining power of employees post globalization is wanting.

Added to that, the casual labor, seasonal employment and specific purpose contract-based employment have come in vogue. The boundary between the traditional employer and the employee is slowly getting blurred. (Dundon; Rollinson, 2004) There thus ought to be a newer definition of employee relationship and the analysis of the modern development of employee relationship management. This may thus be a real solution, as it was thought of by Dr. Perry.

Alternatives for Dr. Perry

1. Go ahead with the plan for revenue sharing with or without freelancing of the staff: But revenue sharing by itself may not be the solution. The doctor ought to find out why staff like Sandi appears motivated while other is not. People are expected to manage their emotions in the workplace. They must conceal their frustration when… [END OF PREVIEW]

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