Office politics create a multitude of problems for healthcare organizations. Administrators and managers must learn to minimize politics to foster a desirable and progressive workplace that provides efficient and effective healthcare services. Office politics can impede productivity and creativity while negatively impacting communication and teamwork. Office politics are an attempt to influence others, which can be positive during teamwork assignments, but will create an unhealthy work environment if the individual is attempting to undermine or sabotage others.
Office Politics that Negatively Impact Healthcare Organizations
- Stealing Ideas
- Insincere Compliments
- Sabotaging Others
- Lobbying Self-Interests
The best way to avoid office politics is through modeling and recognizing the type of behavior preferred within your organization. By displaying and encouraging honesty, teamwork, transparency and cooperation, managers can help their staff to reduce political games. Unfortunately, internal politics are not completely preventable, so learning how to minimize politics and manage the negativity are necessary skills for healthcare leaders.
Skills to Minimize Internal Politics in Healthcare
- Clear Communication – Listen, observe, and adjust communication where needed. Keep conversations to business with the gossiper. Be tactful and give recognition when appropriate.
- Build Strong Relationships – Build trust, be supportive, foster teamwork, be honest. A strong network of trusted colleagues will help organizations to navigate through political quagmires.
- Be a Leader, Not a Manager – Lead by example and recognize the success and skills of others. Avoid dictating and directing without encouraging input and teamwork. Be aware of troublemakers who create hostile work environments and make them aware that type of behavior will not be tolerated.
Office politics are bound to occur, but if you learn to minimize them and encourage positive teamwork you will foster a healthy work environment. For more tips on creating a competitive, growing healthcare organization look to Genesis Medical Management.
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