Overcoming Resistance to Innovation
Douwe W. van Twillert
University of Phoenix
Workforce dynamics in the Ambulatory Treatment Center of University of Texas Anderson Cancer are described in relation to the development and implementation of a renewed scheduling system. In addition possible strategies to overcome organizational resistance are described. A force-field analysis provides insight in some of the forces that resist or drive change. Overcoming Resistance to Innovation
The Ambulatory Treatment Center (ATC) of University of Texas Anderson Cancer Center (ACC) is a multiple-service treatment facility. ACC is composed of five units, each providing a specific type of ambulant treatment for patients suffering of cancer (University of Texas, 2007). The previous Chief Executive Officer (CEO) introduced the current scheduling system for patients seven years ago. The scheduling system is based on a set time per type of treatment and was introduced to control organizational performance. Underlying the system is the assumption that an appointment of a specific type will take an average amount of time and can therefore take place within a specified time. In reality the system causes long wait times, due to several factors not accounted for. Patients of a nearby elderly home visit ATC in the afternoon and appointments of the elderly usually take longer than average. Some appointments include tasks performed by more than one specialist leading to increased wait times. The previous CEO regarded wait times a sign of low performance and considered alternative scheduling systems that were suggested a risk of giving in to bad performance. The new CEO who recently replaced the previous CEO encourages staff to be innovative. A small Project Group (PG) is formed and given the task to suggest a solution to the problem of long wait times. Concerns exist that innovative plans will not be supported by the CEO...
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