Written Case Analysis
Modern management practice emphasizes the need for free expression and encourages open communications, especially between superiors and subordinates, and methods of continuing consultation and negotiation. The task for managers is therefore not just to resolve or suppress all conflict, but to manage it so as to reduce its harmful effects and benefit from its good effects. It should be mentioned that in the past conflict had been overlooked by behavioural scientists partly because it was felt that conflict was damaging to an organization and efforts should be concentrated on measures to create harmony. In this case, conflict is treated seriously as an important aspect in the proper understanding of organizational behaviour.
Taking into account the circumstances, it is evident that Dr. Spiller has the right to intrude into purchasing process because the hospital “which owned the equipment he used, paid him one-third of the gross earnings of the department” (case study). In this case, he is interested in high quality equipment for his department. On the other hand, he is a head of radiology department and first-rate specialist. His decision is very important in this case.
Nevertheless, Dr. Spiller is not responsible for purchasing procedures; he plays a consultation role to approve or reject the decision accepted by the purchasing department. He could ask Silver (as he actually did) to buy the model he needs. The sources of conflict that is considered here are more related to intergroup conflict, but apply to some extent to conflict between individuals, and between individuals and departments.
The problem is that Dr. Spiller does not follow a standard purchasing procedure. In any case, Dr. Spiller has the right to choose the supplier because he is well aware about the quality of the equipment the department uses. On the other hand, he has no right, officially (according to the case study) to approve the price for this equipment. If any differences arise, Silver will be responsible for this purchase as a cooperative purchasing executive. The problem is that without direct participation of Silver equipment may be purchased at too high a price, or of the wrong quality, which may lead to obsolescence and loss of interest or capital. So incorrect buying can have a marked effect upon profits.
In any case, performance should be based on responsibility and ethical decision-making. The high level of responsibility should be implemented in all spheres of hospitals activity. His approach can increase potential risk for hospital. On the one hand, he is not responsible to approach the level of prices, even if his department generated substantial revenues. The duties of a cooperative purchasing executive are to coordinate this part of work.
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