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Management learning in public healthcare during pandemics
University West, Department of Engineering Science, Division of Production Systems. (KAMPT iAIL)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2721-3888
University West, School of Business, Economics and IT, Divison of Informatics. (iAIL)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1421-868X
2024 (English)In: Learning Organization, ISSN 0969-6474, E-ISSN 1758-7905Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Purpose:

This study aims to explore the management learning during a long-term crisis like a pandemic. The paper addresses both what health-care managers have learnt during the COVID-19 pandemic and how the management learning is characterized.

Design/methodology/approach:

The paper is based on a qualitative case study carried out during the COVID-19 pandemic at two different public hospitals in Sweden. The study, conducted with semi-structured interviews, applies a combination of within-case analysis and cross-case comparison. The data were analyzed using thematic deductive analysis with the themes, i.e. sensemaking, decision-making and meaning-making.

Findings:

The COVID-19 pandemic was characterized by uncertainty and a need for continuous learning among the managers at the case hospitals. The learning process that arose was circular in nature, wherein trust played a crucial role in facilitating the flow of information and enabling the managers to get a good sense of the situation. This, in turn, allowed the managers to make decisions meaningful for the organization, which improved the trust for the managers. This circular process was iterated with higher frequency than usual and was a prerequisite for the managers’ learning. The practical implications are that a combined management with hierarchical and distributed management that uses the normal decision routes seems to be the most successful management method in a prolonged crisis as a pandemic.

Practical implications:

The gained knowledge can benefit hospital organizations, be used in crisis education and to develop regional contingency plans for pandemics.

Originality/value:

This study has explored learning during the COVID-19 pandemic and found a circular process, “the management learning wheel,” which supports management learning in prolonged crises. © 2024, Ritva Rosenbäck and Ann Svensson.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2024.
Keywords [en]
Crisis; Decision-making; Health care; Learning; Meaning-making; Pandemic; Power games; Sensemaking; Storytelling; Surge capacity; Trust
National Category
Nursing Business Administration Work Sciences
Research subject
Production Technology; Work Integrated Learning
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-21475DOI: 10.1108/tlo-01-2023-0002ISI: 001142666600001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85182486620OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hv-21475DiVA, id: diva2:1850674
Note

CC BY 4.0

Available from: 2024-04-11 Created: 2024-04-11 Last updated: 2024-05-07
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Rosenbäck, RitvaSvensson, Ann

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