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Quality Management for Sustainable Health: Methodologies, Values and Practices taken from Swedish Organizations
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering, Physics and Mathematics. (Kvalitetsteknik)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7621-2649
2006 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In many Western countries today, not least in Sweden, there are a lot of organizations that have great problems with sickness absence. The costs connected to the high rates of sickness absence have also risen to alarming levels. Healthy co-workers and healthy organizations are obvious goals for many leaders, but this is not always so easy to establish. Work practices and leadership that are beneficial to co-worker health are thus vital to identify.

 

Studies have shown relationships between company-wide implementation of quality programs and improved co-worker satisfaction along with low co-worker turn over; in other words, co-worker health along with improved customer satisfaction and financial results. Despite the great problems concerning sickness absence, there are organizations that have been awarded prizes for excellence in leadership, internal partnership, working environment, and profitability.

 

The overall purposes of the research described in this thesis are to examine and describe how management and leadership can establish sustainable health among the co-workers and examine how the leadership for sustainable health is related to Quality Management. The in-depth purpose is to examine which aspects within the values derived from the quality movement are those that primarily influence the co-workers’ perceived health.

 

The results presented can be described in three parts and are results from four case studies carried out in five different organizations. Three of the organizations have received awards for establishing good working environment, good financial results, and low sick leaves among their co-workers; the fourth received an award for the successful implementation of quality programs.

 

The first part consists of results from case studies in three different organizations and describes how organizations can work to achieve sustainable health among their co-workers, with practical examples. The results are methodologies, values and organizational structure, which it is  considered possible for other organizations to adopt in their efforts to achieve good working conditions resulting in fewer sick leaves.

 

The second part is an attempt to investigate if leadership for sustainable health is related to Quality Management. Methodologies, leadership values, organizational structure, and general values found in organizations which have achieved sustainable health are analyzed in the light of Deming’s 14 points, and a correlation is indicated. There is also correlation found between the TQM values and the co-workers’ perception of their health.

 

The third part examines which of the aspects within the values grown from the quality movement are those that influence the co-workers perceived health. The results show significant correlation between the values and the co-workers’ perception of their health. Aspects found within the value “Top management commitment” were named; Empathy, Presence and Communication, Integrity, and Continuity. Within the value “Let everybody be committed” the aspects; Development, Influence and Being informed were found. These aspects are described in more detail and also in one model per value.

 

The result implies that the TQM values; “Top management commitment”, “Improve continuously” “Let everybody be Committed” and “Focus on customers” are important for achieving healthy organizations and sustainable health among co-workers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Luleå: Universitetstryckeriet , 2006. , p. 105
Series
LTU-LIC, ISSN 1402:1757 ; 2006:49
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-9842OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-9842DiVA, id: diva2:236635
Presentation
2006-09-28, Luleå, 10:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2009-09-24 Created: 2009-09-24 Last updated: 2010-02-25Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Are healthy and successful organizations working accordingly to Quality Management?
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Are healthy and successful organizations working accordingly to Quality Management?
2009 (English)In: International journal of workplace health management, ISSN 1753-8351, Vol. 2, no 3, p. 245-257Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine if healthy and successful organizations are working accordingly to Quality Management. The purpose is also to describe in more detail how they are working.

 

Methodology/Approach

Three Swedish organizations that have shown excellence in leadership, internal partnership, working environment and profitability have been examined, to find out what methodologies they have used for their success. To discover whether these healthy and successful organizations are working accordingly to Quality Management, Deming’s 14-point list has been used as an analytical tool.

 

Findings

Identified methodologies used by the healthy and successful organizations are described.  Viewed in the light of our analysis, a relationship between the three examined healthy and successful organizations and Quality Management is indicated.

 

Practical implications

Working with the methodologies described in the paper, the three organizations have improved co-worker health. Other organizations could probably adopt the identified and described methodologies to improve the health of their co-workers and effectiveness in the organization.

 

Originality/value

Concerning the performance evaluation and the continuous improvement component in Quality Management, substantial contributions could be made to the health area by applying the tools that the quality area have used over a considerable period to improve the quality outcomes.

Quality and health aspects have common success factors, and a focus on high quality could be seen as positive for health outcomes.

Keywords
Quality Management, health, leadership, methodologies, performance, effectiveness., Kvalitetsteknik, Kvalitet
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-6385 (URN)10.1108/17538350910993430 (DOI)2-s2.0-76749122827 (Scopus ID)4496 (Local ID)4496 (Archive number)4496 (OAI)
Available from: 2009-02-23 Created: 2009-02-23 Last updated: 2018-11-27Bibliographically approved
2. How successful Swedish organisations achieve sustaniable health
Open this publication in new window or tab >>How successful Swedish organisations achieve sustaniable health
2005 (English)In: International Journal of Management Practice, ISSN 1477-9064, E-ISSN 1741-8143, Vol. 1, no 3, p. 233-250Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The costs connected to the rapidly increasing sick leaves have risen to alarming levels in Sweden and, for instance, Norway and the Netherlands. To find out how to handle the situation on an organizational level, a case study of two organizations has been carried out, which are recognized and have been awarded for their excellence in methodologies for decreasing the number of sick leaves. One is a small manufacturing company and the other one is a large public health care organization. Both organizations are non-hierarchical with responsibility and authority delegated to different groups. The data collection has mainly been carried out through brainstorming in groups, structured in tree diagrams, complemented by interviews. Important working methods for mangers are low-prestige, visibility and functioning as coaches with activities aimed at building relations. On the basis of the result of this study, suggestions are presented which are considered possible for others to adopt.

Keywords
Sustainable health, Methodologies, Lleadership, Partnership, Quality Technology and Management, TQM, Quality control, Kvalitetsteknik, Kvalitet
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-3312 (URN)10.1504/IJMP.2005.008036 (DOI)2-s2.0-33846279584 (Scopus ID)3249 (Local ID)3249 (Archive number)3249 (OAI)
Available from: 2008-09-30 Created: 2008-09-30 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved
3. Quality management and health: a double connection
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Quality management and health: a double connection
2007 (English)In: International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, ISSN 0265-671X, E-ISSN 1758-6682, Vol. 24, no 1, p. 49-61Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this paper is to examine and discuss the effects of quality management in the health care sector and the general effects of quality management on the health of the employees. Methodology/approach The empirical basis consists of three case studies in one industrial manufacturing company and two hospitals. The empirical data have been gathered with both qualitative and quantitative methods. Findings: The twofold value of quality management, of preventing disease by supporting more rewarding working conditions as well as improving the treatment of disease by increasing the effectiveness of health care organisations it indicated. Leadership commitment was found to be the most crucial common prerequisite for successful quality management implementation and for creating a healthy work environment. In addition, continuous improvements and participation of everybody were found to have importance for well functioning quality management as well as for health. Research limitations/implications: The paper provides additional understanding of the influence of quality management on health and a model is presented. A limitation is that the factors studied are fairly broad and for further research it will be useful to go deeper into the mechanics of them. Practical implications: The three factors leadership commitment, participation of everybody and continuous improvements have been shown to be vital contributors for health and managers should make every effort to implement them. Originality/value: The double effect of quality management on health has not been studied before and knowledge of the factors contributing to it is valuable.

Keywords
Quality Management, Health, Health-care, Leadership Commitment, Society, Quality Technology and Management, TQM, Quality control, Kvalitetsteknik, Kvalitet
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-3721 (URN)10.1108/02656710710720321 (DOI)2-s2.0-33846117654 (Scopus ID)3887 (Local ID)3887 (Archive number)3887 (OAI)
Available from: 2008-09-30 Created: 2008-09-30 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved
4. The relationship between quality management and employee health -: exploring the underlying dimensions
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The relationship between quality management and employee health -: exploring the underlying dimensions
2010 (English)In: International Journal of Productivity and Quality Management, ISSN 1746-6474, Vol. 5, no 2, p. 109-123Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The first purpose of this study was to verify the relationship between workplace health and quality management, particularly the values ‘leadership commitment’ and ‘participation of everybody’ whose importance previous research has pointed to. The second purpose of the study was to examine the constituents and mechanics of the relationships between health and those values. A case study was carried out in a Swedish manufacturing company using data triangulation in the form of in-depth interviews and focus-group interviews on three levels.

 

The findings show that the perceptions of the quality management values were significantly correlated with the employees’ perception of their health. This finding substantiates earlier studies indicating a relationship between quality and health. Important dimensions of ‘leadership commitment’ and ‘participation of everybody’, regarding health, were identified and described in models. The paper provides additional understanding of the connection between quality management and health, particularly regarding the role of leadership.

 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
InderScience Publishers, 2010
Keywords
Employee health, Quality management, TQM, values, workplace health, leadership commitment, participation of everybody, Quality Technology and Management, TQM, Quality control, Kvalitetsteknik, Kvalitet
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-6381 (URN)10.1504/IJPQM.2010.030737 (DOI)2-s2.0-80051999326 (Scopus ID)4425 (Local ID)4425 (Archive number)4425 (OAI)
Available from: 2008-12-07 Created: 2008-12-07 Last updated: 2017-05-03Bibliographically approved

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