“Managing Organizational Behavior” by Baldwin

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Introduction

Organizational behavior plays an important role in the corporate culture as it defines the relationships between the members of teams and, therefore, has an impact on the performance of working groups and the quality of service. The given paper aims to convene the concepts presented in the book by Baldwin, Bommer, and Rubin (2013) and reflect how the findings can be used in individual professional development.

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Stress Management

Detrimental health risks have long been established as a sequela of stress-related outcomes in healthcare providers, and therefore stress management remains the topic of paramount importance. Stress management is a field that involves numerous techniques to help people to solve their personal problems efficiently. In their book, Baldwin et al. (2013) state that stress is inseparably associated with the range of deleterious consequences that have a negative impact on the essential skills of an individual. According to the authors, stress can be listed among the most prevalent causes of physical and mental illnesses in people from different countries; the researchers also suppose that people should choose coping strategies based on their character formations as the latter are closely related to the reaction to stress that different people demonstrate. Furthermore, there are other paralleled opinions concerning stress management as far as healthcare-associated stress and the benefits of its management are concerned.

In their research article, Fuentes et al. (2015) report the results of the study that has been conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of an intervention for healthcare specialists aimed specifically at reducing their stress levels. The sample used by the authors included more than 160 professionals, which implies that its external validity and the statistical significance of its findings were increased. The intervention implemented by the researchers included a substantial number of online tools and notes on the consequences of stress and the best stress management techniques. According to the data collected with a questionnaire, the participants recognized the importance of positive stress. As a result, the intervention was very effective as it helped people to understand the nature of stress more thoroughly.

In fact, a lot of researchers confirm the existence of positive stress. For instance, Tikkamäki, Heikkilä, and Ainasoja (2016) state that reflective practice remains an important tool for stressed people as it allows them to explore the hidden opportunities for personal growth that stress involves. Having interviewed about twenty business owners from Finland, the authors concluded that reflective practices such as keeping personal diaries could encourage people to work hard to eliminate their problems.

The problem of stress management in future healthcare specialists was also studied by Van der Riet, Rossiter, Kirby, Dluzewska, and Harmon (2015), who introduced a stress management program for undergraduate students which included exercises and studying theory. The exercises that have helped many participants to reduce stress, focused on bodily sensations and emotions. According to the findings reported by the authors, self-awareness remains an effective stress management component.

Therefore, the information retrieved from these sources can help me to improve my personal performance and perfect my professional skills. Understanding the importance of eustress, one can find a nerve to make one more attempt to encourage positive changes. Apart from that, I suppose that the use of reflective practices and exercises involving changing the focus of attention will help me to control my emotions during further practice. At the same time, I support the assumption that it is necessary for a specialist to review the theory on stress management to be able to discharge responsibilities effectively.

Ethical Decision-Making

Healthcare practice involves consistent communication interventions with clients who have problems that may significantly decrease the quality of their lives. Considering the specific needs that these people may have, it is crucial to understand the essential role of ethical decision-making in healthcare. In general, speaking about ethical decisions, specialists mean the ones that support common ethical values such as responsibility, respect, and trust. Also, it is necessary to understand that ethical decision-making is a process involving many steps, and future healthcare professionals should devote enough time to studying the topic. The textbook by Baldwin et al. (2013) contains a lot of information on ethical decision-making; according to the authors, it is crucial for people working in any sphere to recognize ethical issues that may seem unobvious. Another important thought expressed in the chapter is the existence of “right-vs-right” scenarios when employees are supposed to choose between two options, each involving both positive and negative consequences for different people (p. 124).

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Continuing on the issue of ethical decision-making, it is necessary to mention the article by Bazerman and Sezer (2016), who review the articles devoted to bounded ethicality and the ways to improve ethical behavior in individuals. According to the findings reported by the authors, dealing with unethical behavior should be regarded as one of the important tasks of leaders; therefore, the ability to recognize the decisions involving violations of ethical codes is an essential skill for those coordinating work of other employees.

The identified topic is also covered in the work by Teixeira, Ribeiro, Fonseca, and Carvalho (2014), who study ethical decision-making with regard to the cases from medical intensive care units. The authors state that healthcare specialists have to make a lot of tricky decisions when it comes to suspending medical treatment, communication, and the use of terminal sedation. As the researchers indicate, nurses and medical doctors are likely to understand the importance of ethical decision-making in different ways, and the latter are more aware of the features of ethical decisions. Therefore, the results highlight the need to provide further ethical education for healthcare specialists.

Ethical challenges associated with decision-making were also studied by Gotowiec and Cantor-Graae (2017), who conducted their research exploring the way that healthcare specialists saw ethical decisions. Apart from that, the researchers also worked on the problem of the influence of such a situation on the professional performance and personalities of the participants. As the analysis of the themes retrieved during the interviews shows, ethics is seen as the concept inextricably connected with organisational constraints and difficulties surrounding the process of decision-making.

As is clear from the discussed sources, there are a lot of problems that are intrinsically linked to ethical decision-making. Personally, I believe that the newly acquired knowledge can be used to improve my professional performance in the future. First, I will have to improve my skills, studying the features of ethical decisions more thoroughly. Furthermore, as a healthcare specialist, I will have to learn more about difficult cases in medical practice that involve right-vs-right scenarios.

Conflict Resolution

A conflict resolution is the concept that involves identifying the choice that allows for a compromise between the parties involved. It is crucial for healthcare providers to study this topic because it often happens that interpersonal differences or conflicting points of view may lead to confrontations between colleagues or patients and healthcare professionals.

Discussing the topic of conflicts and the methods helping to resolve and prevent them, Baldwin et al. (2013) highlight the importance of negotiation and mediation. According to their opinion, to resolve a conflict, it is extremely important to define its type, which can be connected with tasks or personal relationships. The book contains valuable information on the stages of conflict and strategies that can be utilised by the participants. The authors state that collaboration should be viewed as the most beneficial approach toward addressing conflicts whereas avoiding and competition can be useful only in particular situations. To me, it seems that this categorization can also be applied to the sphere of healthcare. The well-being of a patient remains the primary value for healthcare specialists, and collaboration must be the most effective way to improve the quality of life of clients.

Conflict resolution is a popular topic studied by numerous researchers. For instance, Chan, Sit, and Lau (2014) conducted the research to define the most common conflict management styles used by future healthcare professionals. The data was collected with the help of a questionnaire. Regarding the results, the authors state that integration is the most popular style whereas domination is considered as rather ineffective. Apart from that, the answers given by the participants emphasise the importance of emotional intelligence (EI) in conflict resolution. The researchers have managed to establish a link between the level of EI and the choice of methods; thus, participants lacking these skills were more likely to prefer the avoidance strategy.

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The role of EI in successful conflict resolution was also studied by Umashankar and Charitra (2014), who were focusing on the connection between the EI level and the frequency of work-related conflicts among the participants. Within the frame of the study, the researchers designed a special training program aimed at improving EI in participants, and the results indicate its effectiveness. The intervention implemented by the researchers helped to improve average EI level among the members of the experiment group, and, therefore, the number of conflicts was reduced.

In their study, Almost et al. (2016) review articles from scholarly sources devoted to conflict management and summarise the results. Having explored more than forty sources, the authors concluded that the majority of the researchers identify low EI level, lack of communication, and inappropriate work environment as the factors preventing successful conflict resolution. Summarising the findings reported by other researchers, the authors have managed to develop a few general recommendations helping to manage conflicts between healthcare specialists; on the whole, the research outcomes indicate the need for reducing the negative factors identified.

Applying the identified information to my area of expertise, one must admit that the ability to resolve conflicts is important for a medical doctor, which is why I will try to apply the knowledge retrieved for the sources in the future. Thus, the primary focus should be put on developing EI skills and using collaboration since its effectiveness has been proven many times. In general, it can be necessary to apply this strategy paying increased attention to the primary values of the profession. Ostensibly, the identified approach will help me to deliver better performance.

Motivation

There are numerous situations when people think they are incapable of completing a certain task, and an inappropriate mental approach can significantly reduce the effectiveness of the work. Therefore, motivation remains an important topic for professionals in all areas.

In their book, Baldwin et al. (2013) discuss many questions related to motivation. According to their opinion, the problem of motivation is surrounded by numerous myths; for instance, many people seem to think that inappropriate performance is always caused by low motivation levels and that boosting motivation is impossible without pecuniary rewards. Even though it seems that the topic is more applicable to managers, medical doctors should also be aware of the nature of motivation as the ability to motivate themselves may help them to work harder and perfect their professional skills. Also, healthcare specialists working as a team should motivate each other to reduce conflicts and improve outcomes for patients.

Expanding on the topic of motivation, it is necessary to mention the work by Chen, Ma, Jin, and Fosh (2013), who studied the problem of motivation in connection with gender differences and privacy. Just like the authors of the discussed book, the researchers prove that motivation is not always connected with increased salaries. According to the results of their research, one of the important ways to increase motivation is to provide people with the opportunity to gather and handle information on their own. In other words, employees should not feel that their work is constantly controlled since it has a negative influence on motivation. At the same time, comparing the reactions of the participants based on their gender, the authors found out that the use of mediation to motivate the participants had a stronger impact on male employees than on female ones.

Johnson and Nandy’s (2015) article studies the connection between leadership skills and motivation of the employees. Having analysed the themes mentioned by the participants in their interviews, the authors concluded that the level of motivation was strictly connected with the skills of leaders. Furthermore, the latter should utilise various assessment tools to ensure that their leadership styles should be effective and, therefore, improve motivation and job satisfaction levels among employees.

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The problem of motivation in healthcare was also examined by Okello and Gilson (2015), who conducted a systematic review of articles on the topic. Focusing on the connection between trust-based relationships and motivation, the authors found out that the link between these variables had been proven by the majority of the researchers. In fact, according to the review, trust-based relationships between colleagues make them more motivated and improve job satisfaction level.

To improve my professional performance, I am going to apply the knowledge retrieved from these sources. Moreover, to improve motivation of my future colleagues and, therefore, encourage better teamwork, it will be essential to establish trust-based relationships with other people and be respectful to their professional skills. Apart from that, it will be important to use self-assessment tools to identify the factors decreasing my own job satisfaction and motivation levels.

Professionalism

In terms of organisational behaviourbehaviour, professionalism is defined as the capability to perform the primary duties and manage unwanted situations at work (e.g., conflicts, misunderstandings, etc.). Discussing the nature of professionalism, Baldwin et al. called it a “source of trust and respect” (2013, p. 294) which strengthened the reputation of individuals and the entire organisations. Therefore, professionalism is considered as the feature which is responsible for the way that other people see an organisation.

Discussing the skills related to professionalism, it is important to mention the work by Mackey (2014), who studied changing perceptions of professionalism in healthcare professionals. According to the researcher, the participants indicate that current changes related to healthcare practices have affected their perception of professionalism and knowledge. Trying to define professionalism in the changing world, the participants used different strategies. Considering the influence of organisational structure and other limitations reported by healthcare professionals, the participants stated that the new interpretation of professionalism in healthcare should involve the need for reciprocal relationships. Also, professionalism is inextricably connected with ethical decisions and self-assessment.

According to Dunn (2016), professionalism in healthcare cannot be separated from medical ethics as the latter encourages healthcare practitioners to make decisions that align with ethical codes and bring benefits to patients. More importantly, the author states that professionalism should become the key focus for future specialists.

As stated by Taylor, Grey, and Checkland (2017), professionalism is the concept that involves subjective reflections. Having analysed the nature of professionalism from different points of view, the authors state that representatives of governmental bodies should pay more attention to the topic as the accepted notion of professionalism has a great influence on the behaviour of healthcare specialists. As the review details, professionalism in healthcare has numerous dimensions; for instance, on the intrapersonal level, it can manifest itself in “commitment, fairness, and morality” (p. 891).

Personally, I suppose that it is crucial for any healthcare practitioner to have a clear vision of professionalism as it is interconnected with motivation, job satisfaction, and the overall performance quality. I agree that professionalism defines reputation of a specialist. To apply this knowledge to improve my personal performance, I am going focus more on my relationships with other specialist and the appropriateness of professional decisions that I make. Additionally, it is clear that professionalism is strictly connected with other topics covered in the book; to me, professionalism involves all the topics that have been discussed. Therefore, to become a professional with a good reputation, I will have to use the findings reported by all the authors.

Conclusion

Personal development of a healthcare practitioner is a complex process that requires passing numerous stages of professional development. To me, it seems that any specialist who wants to be proud of their work should pay attention to the topics covered by the authors of the textbook and other researchers. Even though some of the findings were not new to me, I still suppose that a healthcare practitioner must deploy new strategies for improvement once they are confirmed by different researchers. Therefore, to grow and become a good medical doctor, I am planning to identify possible problems with my EI, focus on ethical values of healthcare practice, apply conflict management styles based on the situation, and motivate co-workers, demonstrating appreciation of their skills and attracting their attention to the link between motivation and health outcomes for patients. Applying these practices and the relevant ideas, I expect to improve my professionalism level, which is interconnected with all the skills mentioned.

References

Almost, J., Wolff, A. C., Stewart-Pyne, A., McCormick, L. G., Strachan, D., & D’souza, C. (2016). Managing and mitigating conflict in healthcare teams: An integrative review. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 72(7), 1490-1505.

Baldwin, T. T., Bommer, W. H., & Rubin, R. S. (2013). Managing organizational behavior: What great managers know & do. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Irwin.

Bazerman, M. H., & Sezer, O. (2016). Bounded awareness: Implications for ethical decision making. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 136, 95-105.

Chan, J. C., Sit, E. N., & Lau, W. M. (2014). Conflict management styles, emotional intelligence and implicit theories of personality of nursing students: A cross-sectional study. Nurse Education Today, 34(6), 934-939.

Chen, X., Ma, J., Jin, J., & Fosh, P. (2013). Information privacy, gender differences, and intrinsic motivation in the workplace. International Journal of Information Management, 33(6), 917-926.

Dunn, M. (2016). On the relationship between medical ethics and medical professionalism. Journal of Medical Ethics, 42(10), 625-626.

Fuentes, P., Barrera, M. I., González-Forteza, C., Ruiz, E., Rodríguez, E. M., & Navarro, C. (2015). Evaluation of effectiveness of an interactive intervention for stress management in health professionals. Salud Mental, 38(5), 347-351.

Gotowiec, S., & Cantor-Graae, E. (2017). The burden of choice: A qualitative study of healthcare professionals’ reactions to ethical challenges in humanitarian crises. Journal of International Humanitarian Action, 2(1), 2.

Johnson, S. M., & Nandy, S. (2015). Leadership skills, job satisfaction, and motivation in the workplace: A phenomenological research study. Journal of Perspectives in Organizational Behavior, Management, & Leadership, 1(1), 10-14.

Mackey, H. (2014). Living tensions: Reconstructing notions of professionalism in occupational therapy. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, 61(3), 168-176.

Okello, D. R., & Gilson, L. (2015). Exploring the influence of trust relationships on motivation in the health sector: A systematic review. Human Resources for Health, 13(1), 16.

Taylor, C., Grey, N. J. A., & Checkland, K. (2017). Professionalism… It depends where you’re standing. British Dental Journal, 222(11), 889-892.

Teixeira, C., Ribeiro, O., Fonseca, A. M., & Carvalho, A. S. (2014). Ethical decision making in intensive care units: A burnout risk factor? Results from a multicentre study conducted with physicians and nurses. Journal of Medical Ethics, 40(2), 97-103.

Tikkamäki, K., Heikkilä, P., & Ainasoja, M. (2016). Positive stress and reflective practice among entrepreneurs. Journal of Entrepreneurship, Management and Innovation, 12(1), 35-56.

Umashankar, K., & Charitra, H. G. (2014). Conflict resolution through training on emotional intelligence and empathy in a workplace – An empirical study. Research in Business and Management, 1(2), 121-145.

Van der Riet, P., Rossiter, R., Kirby, D., Dluzewska, T., & Harmon, C. (2015). Piloting a stress management and mindfulness program for undergraduate nursing students: Student feedback and lessons learned. Nurse Education Today, 35(1), 44-49.

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