Differing Approaches of Leaders and Managers to Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) and Patient Satisfaction

DifferingApproaches of Leaders and Managers to Continuous Quality Improvement(CQI) and Patient Satisfaction


DifferingApproaches of Leaders and Managers to Continuous Quality Improvement(CQI) and Patient Satisfaction

Theuse of the terms leader and, the manager has been usedinterchangeably and has many a times led to confusion on whether theyare the same or not. However, in the two aren’t the same as notevery manager within the nursing sector is a good leader, whereas anurse who shows good leadership qualities does not necessarily makegood managers. In an organization such as hospitals, a nurse managerholds an assigned position, and in turn she holds decision-makingpowers. On the other hand, a leader within the same organization mayonly possess recognized authority, but not an assigned position.

Thereare many similarities between leaders and managers. Both disciplinesentail influencing others to accomplish organizational goals (NoureElahi, n.d.). As a result, the term leadership and management aresometimes used interchangeably. However, a leader and a manager playtwo different roles. Leaders use their ability to influence theirfollowers towards the achievement of goals. Managers, on the otherhand, facilitate of their team’s success by providing everythingthat is needed to be productive and accomplish the goals (Winkler,2010). Therefore, leaders and managers approach workplace issues fromdifferent angles. This essay discusses the differing approaches to aleader and a manager to Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) andpatient satisfaction issues.

CQIis an approach or method used to improve the health care delivery,focusing on organization processes rather than the patients. Itentails recognizing the needs of the patient, identifying problems,and implementing corrective actions that solve the problems of thepatients (Ncchc, 2010). CQI and patient satisfaction are, therefore,the principal pillars of any health care delivery system. Healthcareorganizations have a duty to improve the quality of their healthcaredelivery process continuously to promote customer satisfaction.Managers and leaders use different approaches CQI and patientsatisfaction approaches. In the modern and the emerging competitivemarket in sectors such as healthcare, leaders/managers ought to focuson achieving the best rating so as to differentiate theirorganization from their competitors. One of the focuses ismaintaining and excellent customer royalty. This can be achievedthrough different approaches such training programs such as ‘totalquality management’ or the application of CQI ‘continuous qualityimprovement’. With these approaches, nurses and other employeeslearn how to sensitive to patient’s needs, which is the first steptowards building loyalty.

Amanager is an administrator, but a leader is an innovator (NoureElahi, n.d.). Therefore, managers approach CQI by focusing on theorganization’s policies and procedures (Bohoris &amp Vorria,2010). The nurse manager improves quality by ensuring that the laiddown systems and structures are strictly followed. He/she establisheselaborate policies and quality manuals that stipulate the expectedquality standards in the healthcare organization. The managers makesure that these policies, rules and manuals are strictly followed torealize quality service delivery and patient satisfaction. A manageralso gives every certain employee responsibilities to meet based onthe desired CQI goals.

Aleader, on the other hand, is flexible and continuously looks forbetter ways to improve processes in the healthcare organization(Bohoris &amp Vorria, 2010). Unlike the manager, a leader is notbound by the structures, policies or procedures, but rather thinksoutside the box. He encourages creativity and innovation amongworkers which leads to better ways of delivering competent care tothe patients (Noure Elahi, n.d.). A nurse leader is an advocate forchange and allows employees to act willingly towards improving thequality of services delivered. He empowers the employees to come upwith innovative ways to improve care and reach the highest possiblepotential.

Managersuse the extrinsic motivators such as rewards and punishments torealize the organizational goals (Bohoris &amp Vorria, 2010).Therefore, nurse managers approach CQI and patient satisfaction byestablishing a system of reward and punishment. Employees who work toachieve the CQI and provide patient satisfaction are rewarded throughpromotions and bonuses to motivate them. The employees who fail tomeet the required standards receive punishments such as dismissal.

Aleader, on the other hand, approaches CQI and patient satisfaction bymotivating the employees with a vision. According to Winkler (2010),a transformational leader inspires their followers to forego theirpersonal interests for those of the organization with a vision.Unlike the manager, a leader avoids using punishment and rewards tomotivate employees. Instead, a nursing leader approaches CQI andpatient satisfaction by providing the workforce with a CQI vision andinspiring them to own it. Additionally, a leader enlightens theemployees on the importance of CQI and patient satisfaction. He/sheeducates them on what CQI is and how it leads to patientsatisfaction. As a result, the employees are motivated intrinsicallythus they work towards achieving the vision.

Oneof the major and essential achievements in a nursing setting isimproved customer satisfactions. From a personal point of view, Ibelieve that the leadership approach is best suited for theimplementation of CQI and patient satisfaction. The leadershipapproach has several significant merits over the management approach.The leadership approach leads to better employee job satisfaction andimplementation of CQI to promote patient satisfaction. The autonomygranted to the employees, promotes responsibility and jobsatisfaction which ensures that employees are loyal to theorganization. The management approach is based on extrinsicmotivation and the coercion of the employees. The lack of freedom indecision making in the management approach can be a hygiene factor inthe workplace area leading to job dissatisfaction.

Additionally,the leadership approach leads to long-term success in CQI, andpatient satisfaction, whereas the management approach, is focused onthe short-term gains. With the two different approaches towards therealization of goals, the leadership approach looks more viable forlong-term customer satisfaction within an organization. Nurse leadersinspire employees with a vision. The vision represents the biggerpicture of the organization making CQI and patient satisfaction theorganization’s philosophy (Bohoris &amp Vorria, 2010). Employeesown the vision and work towards it even in the absence of the leader.On the contrary, the management approach uses reward and punishmentswhich if withdrawn reduces the commitment of the workers to the CQIand patient satisfaction goals leading to short-term success.

Inconclusion, CQI, and patient satisfaction should be a priority forhealthcare organizations. The organization should ensure that CQI andpatient satisfaction goals are met. However, nurse leaders andmanager use different approaches to promoting CQI and patientsatisfaction. While managers use rewards and punishments to motivateemployees towards the attainment of CQI and patient satisfaction,nurse leaders inspire their employees with a vision. Manager followslaid down structures and manuals to ensure CQI and patientsatisfaction, whereas leaders encourage innovation and creativity.This makes nursing leadership approach the best in implementing CQIand patient satisfaction goals. However, it’s clear that, with thedistinct roles assigned to leaders and the managers, the objectivesand goals remain and integral element towards achieving the best forthe organization.


BohorisG. &amp Vorria E. (2010). Leadershipvs. Management.November 24, 2013. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ep.liu.se/ecp/026/076/ecp0726076.pdf

Ncchc.(2010). ContinuousQuality Improvement | National Commission on Correctional HealthCare.Retrieved 24 November 2015, fromhttp://www.ncchc.org/spotlight-on-the-standards-24-1

NoureElahi, M. (n. d) Inducting School Leaders and Managers. SSRNElectronic Journal.http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2271064

Winkler,I. (2010). Contemporaryleadership theories.Heidelberg: Physica-Verlag.