Leadership in the Clinical Laboratory – Health System Example

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"Leadership in the Clinical Laboratory" is a perfect example of a paper on the health system. The problem seems to be that of time schedule; the period when the samples are taken, given to the laboratory for analysis, and then reported back to patient charts for the use of the doctors making their rounds at 7:30 in the morning. The specimens should be taken a bit earlier than 6:00 a. m. (it could be taken in the preceding night so results are ready by the morning when the doctors make their rounds and are able to make decisions already).

On the other hand, another alternative will be to make the doctors do their rounds later in the morning at perhaps 9 or 10 in the morning, so there is enough time for the lab results to be sent back. The management style that is preferred can be a combination of joint decision (or democratic) when it comes to the generation of possible solutions and alternatives but then it should be the leader or manager who makes the final decision with regards to which solution will be adopted or used.

This is to hasten the decision-making process as time is of the essence in that the budget is being cut and there is an urgent need to cut a patient's length of stay in the hospital. Team members can offer their suggestions but it is the manager of the community hospital who has to make the decision so that no delays will be incurred in finding solutions. The team should include the physicians (users of the lab results), phlebotomists, the laboratory manager, and the supervisor.

This will form the core team members but if possible, allow others like the nurses and the bench tech to participate and give their inputs. This is to make the problem solving an all-inclusive approach in that all those involved in finding the solution are consulted and given a chance to air their side, give their suggestions or opinions, and thereby ensure the cooperation of everyone involved. The idea is to get a “ buy-in. ” The anchoring trap can be avoided if each team member is given only a limited time to explain their side and concerns because it can consume so much time.

There is not much of a need to weigh the pros and cons since the problem is already well identified; the problem is just a question of proper scheduling of when the samples are to be taken so the lab results can be ready by the time the doctors make their rounds since obviously, the doctors cannot make a decision with regards to possible patient discharge without those laboratory results. The sink cost trap is not really necessary at this point since it will just encourage finger-pointing and looking for someone else to blame if there are mistakes made.

The confirming evidence trap can be avoided by skipping this exercise altogether as it is not necessary for the sense the problem is quite simple to solve and its core issue has been identified, just of time schedules. The framing trap is also not very necessary at this point, because as already pointed out, the problem is not that complex at all. Doing this exercise will just consume time and cause further delays in finding an urgent and effective solution to a relatively simple problem. If I am the team leader investigating the turnaround time of the laboratory results, it is better to use the democratic style of leadership because this approach is the most effective.

It ensures the cooperation of all stakeholders involved because their ideas, suggestions, and opinions are listened to and given importance. Everybody is given a chance to speak up for an opportunity to highlight their points of view (POV) but then, as time is limited, I as the leader have to make a quick decision at some point in order to meet the time constraints.

A democratic style of leadership produces positive results which are more permanent or longer-lasting than any result obtained in another way. Further, a democratic style is intended to transform the entire organization for the long term so any new problem can be solved democratically in the most efficient and effective manner possible (Lussier & Achua 70) because a good leader is dependent on cooperation, viewpoints, and inputs from all members or subordinates.        


Lussier, Robert, and Christopher Achua. Leadership: Theory, Application, and Skill Development. Florence, KY, USA: Cengage Learning, 2009. Print.
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