Although all indications gave an impression that all staff members needed change from Andrew and the managers, he assumed and ignored the mood of the meeting. He also failed to exchange any views with the employees who felt undervalued. By giving them a short opportunity to mention a pressing issue, Andrew indicated that he did not want to discuss anything with the staff. He also became insensitive and dismissed their demoralized feelings, by giving clear reasons for their complaints, in a manner that assumed that they were not genuine. He trivialized their concerns and ironically claimed that his door was open for solving their personal difficulties. Failure to listen to his staff members was an indication that he never understood the nature of his work.
Andrew also failed to plan for the departmental activities in time, conversely, he only promised a quick and unthought-of solution. This was a sign of insincerity and incompetency. He failed to suggest practical ways of overcoming the working pressure, stress and difficulties that staff faced, instead, maintaining the status quo. He also instilled fear in his staff who requested for legitimate support time. Instead of offering the support, he threatened them that if became unprofessional without justification, penalties would follow. He failed to give effective support or establish trust which is necessary to monitor the performance of every employee. This would create fear and lead employees to hiding their mistakes, and failure to ask for guidance or direction. Andrew also failed to empower the staff to determine their workload and control, in a way that gives enough equitable workload and quality responsibility to every employee.
Andrew did not prescribe appropriate professional practices that might meet the needs of NHS, as a way of operating in the prevailing political climate and high costs of production. He did not take note of the workload in his department and could not justify before his managers, why his department needed more resources and time. He failed to establish generous support needed to deliver qualified services. Finally, he closed the meeting in a hurry without proposing a practical and objective plan to solve the emerging problems.
Andrew should have chaired the meeting with the aim of discussing the issues in detail, to help the staffs to cope with the pressure of work. Andrew should have discussed with the staff members the proposed changes before describing their impacts and cutbacks on department funding. He should have chaired a meeting in a consultive manner to explore the pressures of work and the difficulties the workers faced. He should have been sensitive to the moods and attitudes of the employees towards the changes, especially when they sulked and became angry. He should have taken their sentiments seriously with regard to becoming demoralized and feeling no support.
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Andrew should have focused on the key tasks of the staff and support the required changes, rather than ignoring the individual workloads. As a leader, he should have demonstrated leadership in helping people overcome their shared obstacles, rather than inviting them to his office in person, a move which appeared intimidating. To handle the challenges effectively, Andrew should have adopted a learner’s attitude, to listen and understand the experiences of different staffs, based on their personal responsibilities and their strains affecting the quality of work. He should have ended the meeting by apologizing for his wrong perception concerning the prevailing problems. He also needed to have another meeting with all staff members to explore the many issues that emerged.
Andrew’s behavior made impossible to adopt any of the changes that the hospital staff desired. As a leader who acted as their link with managers, staff expected him to understand and share their predicament. The manner in which he held the meeting suggested that his opinion was to support the status quo. Consequently, he ended the meeting in a hurry, and he solved no problem.