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Engaging Professionals in Sustainable Workplace Innovation: Medical Doctors and Institutional Work

journal contribution
posted on 2020-11-19, 05:42 authored by Timothy Bartram, P Stanton, GJ Bamber, Sandra LeggatSandra Leggat, R Ballardie, R Gough
© 2018 The Authors. British Journal of Management published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Academy of Management This paper investigates the role of medical professionals in the success and longevity of the implementation of workplace innovation and organizational change in the Accident and Emergency (A&E) Departments of two large public hospitals, in Australia and Canada, during the introduction of process improvement using Lean Management (LM) methodologies. We ask why and how doctors resist, influence or enable LM initiatives in healthcare. Using a qualitative methodology, we contribute to institutional work theory by unpacking the complex forms of boundary and practice work undertaken by key actors who effectively use their professional status and power to enable practice changes to be embedded. Our findings lend support to the importance of the involvement and ownership of senior doctors in the design, introduction and implementation of successful workplace innovation and organizational change. Senior doctors use their professional expertise, positional and political power at the industry, organization and workplace levels to influence strategically the use of resources designated for workplace innovation to improve efficiencies, quality of patient care and maintain their dominance. The significant organizational change achieved reflected the ownership and leadership of the workplace innovation by senior doctors in ‘hybrid roles’ who captured the rhetoric and minimized adversarialism among key stakeholders.


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British Journal of Management






14p. (p. 42-55)





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