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Organisational culture and change: implementing person‐centred care

Eric D. Carlström (Sahlgrenska Academy, Institute of Health and Care Sciences, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden)
Inger Ekman (Sahlgrenska Academy, Institute of Health and Care Sciences, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden)

Journal of Health Organization and Management

ISSN: 1477-7266

Article publication date: 18 May 2012

16185

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the connection between organisational cultures and the employee's resistance to change at five hospital wards in Western Sweden. Staff had experienced extensive change during a research project implementing person‐centred care (PCC) for patients with chronic heart failure.

Design/methodology/approach

Surveys were sent out to 170 nurses. The survey included two instruments – the Organisational Values Questionnaire (OVQ) and the Resistance to Change Scale (RTC).

Findings

The results indicate that a culture with a dominating focus on social competence decreases “routine seeking behaviour”, i.e. tendencies to uphold stable routines and a reluctance to give up old habits. The results indicate that a culture of flexibility, cohesion and trust negatively covariate with the overall need for a stable and well‐defined framework.

Practical implications

An instrument that pinpoints the conditions of a particular healthcare setting can improve the results of a change project. Managers can use instruments such as the ones used in this study to investigate and plan for change processes.

Originality/value

Earlier studies of organisational culture and its impact on the performance of healthcare organisations have often investigated culture at the highest level of the organisation. In this study, the culture of the production units – i.e. the health workers in different hospital wards – was described. Hospital wards develop their own culture and the cultures of different wards are mirrored in the hospital.

Keywords

Citation

Carlström, E.D. and Ekman, I. (2012), "Organisational culture and change: implementing person‐centred care", Journal of Health Organization and Management, Vol. 26 No. 2, pp. 175-191. https://doi.org/10.1108/14777261211230763

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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