Many experienced healthcare providers choose to take their career to the next level as a hospital manager. Hospital managers’ jobs rarely involve face to face interactions with patients, yet they are directly involved in the creation of policies and systems that either make or break patient care. Position titles that typically fall under hospital management work include hospital administrators, patient care managers, practice managers, and etc. In general, they oversee hospital staff, policies and finances all while ensuring that the hospital runs efficiently and provides for the needs of the community. This article aims to explore what it takes to be a hospital manager and the key skills needed in this field of work.
Academic and Experience Requirements
Many hospital managers hold a bachelor’s degree, however increasing competitiveness in more established institutions have created a preference for those who hold master’s degrees. An MBA degree can increase the likelihood of getting accepted and also significantly accelerate advancement to higher positions in the long run. Other masters degrees that can provide sufficient backgrounds are those that focus on health service administration, public health or business administration. More than academic experience, one vying for a management position must have real world experience in upper management in other organizations. According to an article written by the Our Lady of the Lake University, an estimated 49% of hospital managers have between 5 to 19 years of experience.
Ultimately, formal requirements provide the assurance that applicants possess inherent management skills that ensure they perform well in the position. Analytical skills enable them to understand existing policies and create solutions to problems. Technical skills are just as important since they will be involved in different departments of work whether it be finances, data analytics or patient care. Even a general understanding of all these fields allow for more informed discussion and decision making. Lastly and most importantly, leadership skills are needed to establish good communication channels across different sectors, manage staff and ensure they are well trained and motivated, and to execute carefully formulated programs and policies.
A good manager must be able to remove roadblocks for employees, be knowledgeable of the technology in the hospital or facility, and understand employee routines and responsibilities. More specifically, they set work goals, constantly evaluate the institutions current performance, oversee finances, make sure that the institution is following existing laws and regulations, and serve as representatives of the institution in different meetings and ceremonies. At the end of the day, a hospital manager’s work really varies depending on the unique situations faced by different facilities. They need to be able to adapt to the changing environment and make sure that everyone is able to perform at their best potential.