Fiedler’s Contingency Theory
In this assignment, you will analyze
Fiedler’s Contingency Theory and learn to identify the most effective
leadership style to use in different situations.
Using the South University Online Library or
the Internet, conduct research to gain a greater understanding of
Fiedler’s Contingency Theory.
Read the following scenario and analyze how this situation should be handled.
John, a health management student completing
an internship at Memorial Hospital, has been appointed chair of a
multidisciplinary clinical taskforce by the hospital’s CEO. The
taskforce will design a new operational system to reduce the waiting
time of patients entering the hospital’s emergency room (ER). Although
John had no clinical experience, he had successfully completed a course
in operations management prior to beginning his internship and was
excited to apply his new knowledge for solving a “real” problem for the
The hospital CEO told John that when a
patient entered the hospital’s ER, it could take up to eight hours from
the time the patient was initially triaged by a nurse to the time the
patient was either discharged home or admitted as an inpatient by the
physician. The CEO said, “Due to quality of patient care issues, this
timeframe is unacceptable and the taskforce needs to come up with
solutions to this problem. My goal is to reduce the “turnaround” time
for the patient from eight hours to two hours.”
Prior to being assigned as the chair of this
taskforce, John had informally observed the operations of the
hospital’s ER and noted that many of the bottlenecks causing patient
care delays were caused by operational issues such as nurses filling out
duplicate forms and a lack of communication between the hospital
departments (for example, radiology) when the ER physicians ordered
tests or were waiting for test results to confirm their diagnoses. These
bottlenecks caused a slow turnover of the ER’s examination rooms and
unnecessary paperwork resulting in the ineffective use of both the
physicians’ and nurses’ time.
In addition to John, the CEO assigned Dr.
Smith, the medical director of the hospital’s ER, and Mary, the ER nurse
manager, to the taskforce. As chair of the taskforce, John scheduled an
initial meeting for 10:00 a.m., the following Monday. John was
surprised that both Dr. Smith and Mary arrived twenty minutes late to
the meeting saying that this was “taking valuable time away from their
normal assignments.” John started the meeting by first introducing
himself. Before this meeting, he had no interactions with Dr. Smith and
Mary. He then reviewed the current statistics of the average wait time
for a patient presenting to the ER and the hospital’s CEO desire to
reduce this time. He then opened the meeting for comments and
Dr. Smith spoke first, “In my opinion, the
current operational systems that we have in place are just fine. We just
need more ER physicians and examination rooms so that more patients can
be seen.” Dr. Smith told John to recommend that the operational systems
were good enough and that the hospital should build a new wing for
additional ER exam rooms and hire more physicians.
Interrupting Dr. Smith, John said, “The
hospital has a very limited capital budget and no funds have been
allocated for building more facilities. We need to redesign the
operational system to be more efficient and effective.” Dr. Smith gave
John a stern look and reminded him that he, not John, was the medical
director and therefore, knew what is needed and what is best for the
Mary was the next to speak. She recommended
that more nurses be hired so patients could be triaged quicker when they
first present themselves in the ER. Dr. Smith disagreed, saying,
“Hiring more nurses is not the solution because even if patients were
triaged quicker, there aren’t enough examination rooms to move the
John was just about to remind them of the
taskforce’s purpose, when an overhead page indicated that both Dr. Smith
and Mary were needed in the ER immediately. By now, patients were lined
up in the hallways waiting to be seen in the ER. Dr. Smith told John to
make the hiring and building recommendations to the CEO. The meeting
adjourned, with Dr. Smith and Mary running off to the ER where patients
were waiting to be seen.
John sat in the empty meeting room and
thought, “The CEO is not going to be happy with the taskforce’s
recommendations.” He wondered, “As chair of this taskforce, what could I
have done to produce the desired outcome?” John knew that hiring more
physicians and nurses and building more examination rooms was not the
answer. The answer was better coordination and integration of the ER’s
Based on your research, understanding of the
Fiedler’s Contingency Theory, and the above scenario, create a 4- to
5-page Microsoft Word document to address the following questions:
- What is Fiedler’s Contingency Theory? How did it develop? What are its applications? What are its pros and cons?
- Does everyone have just
one leadership style or can it vary? Why? What factors exert pressure
to influence a shift in leadership style? Are the factors exerting
pressure to influence a shift in leadership style appropriate with
respect to merit and measure? Why or why not?
- What factors influence a leader to adopt a specific style (personal traits, characteristics, environment, and so on)?
- What role do communications, dynamic listening, and conflict resolution play for a leader?
- Using Fiedler’s Contingency Theory, how would you help John determine what leadership style he should use? Why?
- What is the relevance of ethics in the above scenario?
- Which leadership style do you consider the best? Why?
- What would be the most effective leadership style in the above case scenario using Fiedler’s Contingency Theory? Why?
- Assess your own leadership qualities using what
you’ve learned. What is your natural leadership style? Are you
task-oriented or relationship-oriented leader?
Support your responses with appropriate research, reasoning, and examples.
Format your document and cite any sources in accordance to APA guidelines.
Name your document SU_HCM4007_W2_A2_LastName_FirstInitial.doc.
Submit your document to the W2 Assignment 2 Dropbox by Tuesday, May 24, 2016.
Assignment 2 Grading Criteria
Described Fiedler’s Contingency Theory, including its development, application, and pros and cons.
explained, and provided reasons on whether everyone has just one
leadership style or it can vary. Explained the factors that exert
pressure to influence a shift in leadership style. Described whether the
factors exerting pressure to influence a shift in leadership style
appropriate with respect to merit and measure.
the factors that influence a leader to adopt a specific style (personal
traits, characteristics, environment, and so on).
Described the role communications, dynamic listening, and conflict resolution play for a leader.
Explained how you would help John determine what
leadership style to use based on Fiedler’s Contingency Theory.
Described the relevance of ethics in the above scenario.
Explained and provided reasons for the leadership style that you consider the best.
Described the most effective leadership style in the above case scenario using Fiedler’s Contingency Theory.
your own leadership qualities using what you’ve learned. Explained your
natural leadership style. Described whether you are task-oriented or
Used correct spelling, grammar, and professional vocabulary. Cited all sources using APA format.