How Psychology Can Help in Health Service Administration Career
Psychology can be defined as the scientific study of the brain functions and how it modifies behavior. Psychology is a wide field that has connection to various branches of science. The need to learn various behaviors has led to the emergence of many areas of specialty in the field of psychology. Psychology has two sections. One of them is research. Research involves receiving knowledge. The other section is the practice that involves applying the knowledge acquired through research in solving the problems faced in the real world. Through practice, psychology can be segmented into various sections. Psychologists in the modern world have developed different scientific methods to solve most of the problems faced every day. The following paper seeks to analyze how psychology is vital in health services administration career.
Psychology is a diverse field of science. It has a number of areas, which include the abnormal psychology that focuses on research and treatment of various mental disorders. Biological psychology is another field, which studies biological processes and how they affect human brain and its behaviors. There is also clinical psychology that focuses on assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of the mental disorders. Moreover, there is a cognitive psychology that focuses on the study of the human thinking processes and cognitions. Comparative psychology is another area of specialty in psychology. It deals with the study of animal behavior (Peltier, 2011). Developmental psychology is another area that focuses on the human growth and development throughout their lifespan. It focuses on theories of human cognitive abilities, social functioning, morality, and other life areas. One more area is forensic psychology. It is a field that applies psychological processes in the field of law and criminal justice. Other areas of application include school psychology, personality psychology, social psychology, and industrial and organizational psychology. Psychology can be applied in many fields to solve challenges faced in real the world. Therefore, it can be applied in the field of health service administration.
Health service administration career is concerned with the business aspect of health facilities. In such career, an administrator will oversee functions, such as human resources, accounting, organizing and leading, planning, information system, marketing, sales, and general facility management. An administrator can work in areas, such as hospitals, psychiatric centers, and ambulance service provider business among many others (Banyard & Hayes, 2013). The administrators are expected to perform various functions, such as policy developments, budgeting of the available resources, and expansion of available scientific research. The current area falls under various specialties of psychology. Health service administration is a complex career that includes the issue of huge facility budgets. It involves managing a big pool of employees and is considered a complex and a demanding career. To ensure that the facility managed by the health service administrator provides quality health care, much work is expected to be done (Harrison, 2013). The specific roles involved include leading, motivating, and ensuring the provision of quality health care. Such roles may be very challenging. A psychological background can help in tackling the challenges and lead to a successful career.
In the general facility management, psychology can be applied based on the industrial or organizational area of specialty. Management requires providing solutions to the business problems. Psychology helps an administrator understand the work problems and generate solutions (Harrison, 2013). Managers with the psychological background can perform well in areas of employee training to improve productivity and performance. Managers can organize training programs to achieve the above target. Regular research to understand the work problems is important to ensure proper function of any business (Banyard & Hayes, 2013). The research may be aimed at studying consumer reaction regarding products, assessing employees for promotions or placements. The psychological background can be of great help. In sales management, psychological background helps the manager attract, recruit, and train a qualified pool of sales representatives (Peltier, 2011). The ability to study and understand human behaviors is important. A psychological background can help a manager choose the right data to base decisions from a psychological research about markets. For sound management, human resource is very important.
Human resource management is an area that health service administrator will work on in his or her career. It is perhaps the most important function in the career. Moreover, such area is a determinant of a businesses’ success. It the sphere, which helps answer the question regarding how to find the right people, motivating and leading them to ensure success. Human resource management entails hiring the right persons for a particular job (Bakker & Leiter, 2010). The psychological background helps in understanding individual’s behaviors and how they can fit in the given job. The administrators learn the strengths, weaknesses, and attitudes of the employees in the given particular area. Under human resource management, the employees’ welfare is very important. The wellness of an employee means good performance for the business. Learning employees’ conditions and concerns is a function of the human resource managers. With a psychological background, resource managers can easily provide working solutions.
Employees need to be motivated in their jobs. It is important for them to solve numerous challenging exercises, as well as satisfy their needs to grow and many other concerns. Resource managers need to understand the human psychology to motivate employees. Consequently, a psychologist will be better placed in handling such issues. Periodical study of employees is important to ensure increased productivity. Human resource managers need to find areas were employees need to improve and develop (Bakker & Leiter, 2010). It requires close observation of the employees’ behavior. Being at work, employees undergo stress due to the nature of their jobs or working environments. A psychological background will help the human resource manager understand such problems. Counseling is the most preferred solution to these problems. It can help the employees balance employment and family life. Their productivity will increase, and they will lead a better life. Knowledge of how to use counseling is well-represented in the field of psychology. Human resource management is tasked with the role of creating organization culture, which results in the appearance of a sense of belonging among employees. A culture can be created with a good understanding of human behaviors. Through counseling, employees can create psychological attachments to a certain organization, which makes psychology important. Additionally, health service administration career is represented in the service industry (Weiten, Dunn, & Hammer, 2011). Sound management of the human resource can lead to better performance. The psychological background helps administrators achieve this goal.
The administrator is expected to lead the employees to achieve the set goals. Leadership requires followership. Therefore, the leaders are expected to recruit, maintain, and motivate their followers. In the 21st century, leadership has grown to be inclusive so that to achieve common goals. The leader has to understand the behavior of individuals and groups that he/she is leading. Psychology of leadership helps in understanding the practice of leadership and organizational systems (Peltier, 2011). Leadership requires identifying joint goals that can be achieved by the groups collaboratively. The goals should be fitting the groups assigned to reaching them. Psychology helps study the behaviors of given groups and understand what fits them best. Leaders initiate changes that can help organizations address challenges that they face. Individual employees accept the information regarding the areas that need changes, but they find it difficult to initiate the change. Moreover, it may even be difficult to change their beliefs and behaviors. In such case, a presence of transformative leader is required to help them move from such beliefs. Psychological background plays a big a role in this course. It is a process that requires a good understanding of human behaviors. Psychology has different leadership theories, such as behavioral theories, participative theories, management theories, situational theories, contingency theories and great man theories among many others (Weiten, Dunn, & Hammer, 2011). The administrator can choose from such theories. Different situations require different approaches. Depending on what challenge he/she is facing, they can choose one or a combination of the theories to address the challenges. Psychology provides a framework for leadership, which makes it helpful in the administrative function.
Health service administration, as previously mentioned, is concerned with the business aspect of an entity in the health sector. The business aspect of a business cannot operate without accounting and finance. Psychology can be applied in accounting, while money accounting is not the only thing that accountants manage. They also deal with the emotions of the clients. Understanding clients’ psychological needs helps an accountant work smoothly in accounting matters. The use of cognitive psychology in accounting can help an accounting person have a positive relationship with clients (Banyard & Hayes, 2013). Cognitive psychology can be applied in various areas of accounting and auditing. Decision-making is an area of accounting that uses cognitive psychology. Understanding how clients perform decision-making in incomes and expenditures makes it easy to know what the client needs.
In accounting, the relationships between an accountant and clients grow. It moves from money subject to emotional connection and fears. An accountant requires cognitive psychology to develop a successful relationship. Moreover, in accounting, cognitive psychology is important in understanding clients, especially in tax returns. When dealing with clients who have investment minds, an accountant using cognitive psychology can feel safe (Bakker & Leiter, 2010). Clients may not be willing to expose their investment dealings. Cognitive psychology can help accountant understand how to handle difficult clients. In accounting, reports are provided in the form of numbers that are used in decision-making. Psychology explains other factors that cannot be explained in numbers, such as human behaviors that are also important in decision-making.
Planning is an important function of management. A health service administrator will need to plan for an organization he/she is working for. Planning entails choosing the best course of action to achieve a certain goal. Planning is a mental predisposition to do things in an orderly manner. It is where psychology can be implemented (Peltier, 2011). Cognitive psychology helps an individual make important priorities to match with the available resources. Planning involves generating specific goals and means of achieving them. The psychological background helps in defining and developing specific goals that are measurable and achievable. Psychology of goal setting can be applied in the planning process.
Information systems are an integral part of health service administration. Psychology can be extremely important in this field. Information systems are used in keeping business related information, such as purchases, payrolls, sales among other functions (Weiten, Dunn, & Hammer, 2011). Such systems require interaction between human and the machines. Human behaviors need to be studied to understand how they can fit best in such function. Information systems measure the progress of a business against the set goals. Information systems need regular upgrades to meet the expected function. The need to be upgraded poses problem in the functioning of the system (Harrison, 2013). The psychological background is important in identifying the problem and generating solutions. Similarly, in such scenario cognitive psychology will be of great importance. Cognitive skills are important in identifying areas that need to be improved in the system, while generating solutions is based on psychology.
In the health service administration, marketing of the facility and the various products offered is very important. Marketing plays a major role in the growth and development of any business (Weiten, Dunn, & Hammer, 2011). With a psychological background, health service administrator can excel in the marketing field. There are various techniques available to ensure the success of marketing, using psychological knowledge. Psychological research helps in studying the prices and other factors that make consumers prefer one product to another. In marketing, understanding the consumer behavior is very important. Using consumer psychology can help in achieving the objective (Harrison, 2013). It involves studying consumer behavior and decision-making in marketplaces. In such case, researches involving inducing a condition to understand the consumer behavior can be used. An example is where individuals can be given money to spend in a market setting to see how they spend it. It enables the researcher to understand the consumer preferences. The current study helps in understanding how advertising, promotion and other marketing tools can influence consumer behavior. Some psychological techniques, such as creating fear and uncertainty helps marketers attain good results in marketing.
Sales are an important function in any business. In the health service, administration marketing is a function that cannot be underestimated. In sales, psychology is an important aspect. Sales and buying are classified as emotional activities that are unconscious. With a clear understanding of such facts from psychology, the administrator can excel in the sales function (Weiten, Dunn, & Hammer, 2011). Over the years, sales people have not understood what tools they can use to reach customers. With psychological background, one starts by understanding what the customers need. Such understanding helps a person to formulate words and methods to reach the customers. Good information that matches the customers’ needs makes them feel that the good or service is made for them, as well as that the salesperson cares for them. Psychology gives a competitive advantage to the sales person or, in this case, an administrator. In advertising, psychological background helps in formulating message that can capture the mind of the intended customer.
Budgeting health facility’s resources is another function within the mandate of the health service administrator. The psychological background is important in budgeting. The psychology of budgeting helps individuals set real targets as opposed to the normal unrealistic means common in budgeting. Budgeting is more psychological process than it may seem. It involves allocating resources from a central point to the peripherals (Bakker & Leiter, 2010). To understand the spending of a given unit, deep scrutiny is important. Psychology can be helpful in determining whether there are underestimates or overestimates in the budget forecasts. People tend to underestimate the type of spending they have. Psychology helps identify the underestimated areas and make the relevant changes. Budgets use past figures to forecast what the future needs will look like. With psychological background, scrutiny of the past figures will help in making right future estimates.
One of the most important functions of a business is research and development. Such function is a major tool to measure the progress of a business. It helps identify areas that need to be rectified for optimal results. Research and development may not be important in some organizations, but in the health field they play a crucial role. Health service providers need researches to receive an insight on how they may impact their customers and the community in general (Weiten, Dunn, & Hammer, 2011). Health service administrator is mostly tasked with the duty to initiate researches. Research may vary in the health service administration, being an important part in psychology. Consequently, the students have to be well-prepared for making researches in their careers. Psychology as a discipline offers various guidelines for research purposes. Such measures help in achieving the best results for the subject under study. Observing the guidelines helps a researcher give unbiased information about the subject under investigation. In case of psychological researchers, they can be required to get the consent of the respondents. It ensures that good responses are acquired without forcing the responded to participate. Psychology provides various mechanisms for collecting accurate information. The researcher with psychological background knows when it is time to introduce a lie scale. It enables them to test the authenticity of the responses given by respondents. Researchers under psychology would prefer using questionnaires over direct interviews (Weiten, Dunn, & Hammer, 2011). It is caused by the fact that respondents would give more accurate information through writing than in case of face-to-face communication. Such techniques provided by psychology are helpful in ensuring quality research. Moreover, they can be applied in all forms of research considering the fact that psychological background is always important. It ensures that accurate data is received from respondents, and the findings of the research are accurate, as well.
In conclusion, health service administrators will find psychology useful in their field of activity. Psychology is a diverse study that covers various fields. General administrative functions require deep knowledge of human behaviors. Health service administrator’s functions are mainly represented by overseeing the business part of a health facility. Business management skills are important for the administrators, while psychology is an important field in all management functions. The psychological background helps in accomplishing various functions with a competitive edge. Human behaviors are an important factor in any business. As a result, psychology can be successfully implemented in studying human behaviors. The administrators with the psychological background can easily address various challenges that are faced by business. Various tools are provided by psychology to address numerous challenges. Good understanding of industrial and organizational psychology helps individuals provide working solutions to challenges faced by businesses. Generally, psychological researches are very accurate given the fact that the field sets guidelines to its researchers to ensure that the findings are dependable. Application of such skills can enable the administrator to propel in decision-making, as the data available is accurate. The same knowledge can be applied to achieve good results in the sales and marketing fields. Good understanding of consumer behavior through research can lead to good results. Understanding human behaviors will help in recruiting, training, and compensating employees. In the human resource management field, psychology has proven to be the best source for finding solutions. The psychological background helps in understanding behaviors, concerns, and the welfare of employees. In addition, leading requires psychological knowledge. Psychology of leadership helps in choosing the best ways to initiate changes in organizations. With psychological background, health administrators can perform the functions of their careers without problems. It offers a competitive edge in the career as most of the functions are well-embedded within psychology.