Mountain West Health Plans, Inc

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Introduction

There is always a gap created in an organization when someone retires or leaves for one reason or the other. The case is different when the person-leaving person is a leader in the organization. The gap created is much larger hence demands many changes in the organization.  All organizations recognize that change in leadership is an important activity that should be handled with great care. The development of trust, loyalty and all virtues that employees may have had in the outgoing leader is not easy and requires time and effort to develop. Before laying down any plan to replace an exiting leader, there should be an understanding of the possible impacts of changes that might in the absence of the leader (Mullins, 2004). The risks should be well thought-out in details. This should be followed by testing and auditing on regular basis the performance of the new leader who has replaced the leaving one.  

Martin Quinn faces many challenges resulting from the resignation of Evelyn Gustafson’s retirement. Her resignation created a vacancy for a new director in the customer service department. The first challenge that Martin Quinn has is finding a fitting replacement. The new director in charge of customer service should be someone who can bring down the escalating cost within the department. Mr. Quinn thus recruits Eric Rasmussen who has a bachelor’s degree in administration of business. This next challenge is to ensure that Eric Rasmussen is functioning in his new duty as the new director in the customer service department. The other challenge that Mr. Quinn faces is to ensure that the new director fits into Evelyn Gustafson’s shoes and supersedes her standards.  Evelyn Gustafson’s failures were her inability to increase efficiency and to lower the high costs of labor in her department. Mr. Quinn must therefore ensure that the new director is able to increase efficiency and reduce labor costs in customer service department.

The leadership styles of Evelyn Gustafson and Erik Rasmussen are different from each other. Evelyn Gustafson had several desirable personal characters that endeared her to the employees in the customer service department. She was warm and sincerely concerned about her subordinates. Most employees might have taken this virtue as weakness and engaged in other activities besides the work provided. For instance, they expected to be given several breaks, which is counter productive in the end. They could also keep subscribers on hold for a long time. Evelyn Gustafson provided plenty training opportunities, which is good because benefits obtained results into increase of efficiency, but on the other hand requires many resources.

Erik Rasmussen is hardworking and serious about every aspect of the business. The first change that he makes when he begins work at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc. is to increase the number of calls every hour that a representative is expected to handle. He develops a mechanism that measures performance of each representative. This he achieves by developing software that produces automatic work schedule. This increases efficiency and speed which is the goal of any business. This shows that the young man is creative and result oriented. He not only plans for changes that are consistent with the organizational goals but also implements the same. The other area that was eating into the resources of the Mountain West Health Plans, Inc is the frequent training programs. When Erik Rasmussen comes in, he immediately cuts down on the number of training programs. His main aim of doing this is to cut down on the financial burden associated with such programs. The changes that Mr. Erik Rasmussen introduced yielded immediate results. There was a higher performance standard and the number of calls made every hour increased tremendously. This had the effect of reducing the number of hours spent by subscribers on hold. The leadership style that Erik Rasmussen employed also resulted in significant reduction in the financial resources spent at the customer service department.

The strengths of Evelyn Gustafson’s leadership style are that they endear employees to her hence making them loyal to the organization. Her concern and understanding of each employees situation ensures that employees are retained at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc.  Her weakness is her inability to reduce cost, increase efficiency and limit the number of subscribers being put on hold.

The strengths of Erik Rasmussen’s leadership style are that they are result oriented. When he found chance at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc, he analyzed the prevailing situation and designed solutions tailored to solve the existing problems. The measures he established reduced cost, increased efficiency and limited the number of subscribers on hold. Developing software that generates automatic work schedule assisted in ensuring that each employee is performing according to the required standard. His weakness is lack of experience. He is in a leadership position, which is relatively new since all along he has been a student. Unlike Evelyn Gustafson who began working at the lowest level and rose through the ranks, he begins from the top. The lack of experience makes him to require employees to work like machines. Rigid working conditions increase the number of employees exiting any organization (Weiss, 2007).

In order to resolve the current situation at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc, several changes should be made. If I were the manager at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc, I would propose the following changes. Since many employees are leaving and creating several vacancies, we would recruit qualified and aggressive employees. If we recruit the best, we know that we are going to reap the benefits of our efforts since our employees will carry outstanding performances. They will be involved in the maintenance of efficiency in their operations thus develop a culture of excellence. This creates confidence in every employee since each one is exceptional.

The aspect that I can look into is the compensation of employees. Compensation refers to remuneration in forms of wage or salaries. Apart from the other significant activities, that the Human Resource department at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc is involved in, it should also analyze compensation of its employees. Compensation is the payment that an employee receives because of his or her contributions within the organization. They include the monetary and the non-monetary benefits. Compensation motivates employees and improves their effectiveness in the organization. Mountain West Health Plans, Inc should develop the compensation systems such that it is consistent with the objectives of the organization.

The factors that should be considered include job work and responsibilities. The three systematic components of the compensation system are Job analysis, Pay structure and salary surveys (Canas, & Harris, 2010). Job analysis is a systematic analysis of jobs, which leads to the development of job description. Some of the techniques used involve interviews, observation and questionnaire. Pay structure includes the use of grades in rewarding employees. Each grade has a minimum wage or salary. The third component is the salary survey, which is collection of salary market information. These maybe be the average salaries or cost of living indicators.   Since it is clear that a good compensation system should not be focused on only attracting or retaining employees, all employees at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc should be compensated appropriately. After recruiting talented employees, they should be rewarded in relation to their performance and capabilities.

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