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Dealing with management

Sanjiv Kumar & Sumesh Kumar |

Today is the era of multispecialty hospitals where doctors are busy with clinical work and neither has time nor skills for management.

This should be taken care of by hospital managers. They need to go through the daily complexities and strategic decision making. The demand for professional managers is high in healthcare institutions. Pursuing postgraduation in this field opens up opportunities in diverse healthcare segments such as bio-pharmaceutical, health insurance, clinical research, government sectors, and many others. There is a high level of work satisfaction and remuneration.

Also, one has the flexibility of working at varying locations from the non-urban communities to metropolitan cities. Students gain practical knowledge about the nuances to administer the healthcare facilities from a domestic as well as global perspective. There is a dire need to train the managers with appropriate skills.

The skills required for such managers are:

Interpersonal skills: The ability to interact well with the staff and clients is very important for these professionals. Some believe that these skills are innate but the reality is that with proper training and practice they can also be developed.

Leadership skills: They include the ability to delegate authority, motivate others and communicate effectively. This helps them to take thoughtful decisions and meet deadlines.

Analytical and goal setting skills: This will enable a professional to collect, scrutinise and analyse information effectively. It will also help in efficient decision-making. Students are engaged in research projects. Goals should be set in accordance with the data analysed. The success of the manager depends on the extent of goals he achieves.

Entrepreneurial skills: The ability to take initiatives, grab opportunities, take risks and make decisions in uncertain situations are the key skills for successful managers. In the current scenario, the scope of healthcare industry is tremendously widening, bringing in a large pool of opportunities in terms of employment.

Besides the doctors and other paramedical staff, this industry, looks forward to qualified and specialised management professionals who can handle the administrative and the management needs well.

The job profiles involve management of the internal affairs of hospitals. They must deal with critical problems encountered by hospitals and other healthcare agencies and respond favourably to such adverse situations.

Usually, these candidates are placed in community hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, outpatient clinics, and hospices with flexible work timings. Some of the other job roles available in this field are hospital administrator, healthcare finance manager, medical director, HR recruiter, blood bank administrator, pharmaceutical project manager among others.

(The writers are director, IIHMR and assistant professor, IIHMR, respectively)