Management: Needs Assessment And Preliminary Recommendations Homework Essay Sample


Organizations use a needs assessment in order to correlate the organization’s goals with the organization’s needs while focusing on the employees’ current skills and the gap between the employees’ skills and the organization’s objectives. Methods of the data collection, the aspects of the data analysis, preliminary recommendations, and possible barriers to the intervention implementation are discussed in detail in the paper.

Needs Assessment and Preliminary Recommendations

In health care organizations, the question of diversity is actively discussed because the level of workforce diversity is rather high. However, there can be problems associated with promoting diversity principles in health care facilities because of a lack of effective training and development programs. Thus, such organizations as health care facilities need effective solutions to their diversity question with references to improving the approaches to the employees’ learning and development.

A needs assessment is necessary to state whether the proposed training program is effective in addressing the diversity question in the organization. It is important to focus on the methods of the data collection, on the data analysis, on developing preliminary recommendations for using the training, and determining possible barriers associated with the implementation process.

Data Collection for Needs Assessment

A needs assessment is the first stage of developing the training program, which is associated with identifying the organization’s goal and the gap between the employees’ skills and knowledge and the organization’s objectives. To gather the data necessary for analyzing the needs, it is necessary to use a variety of methods and techniques (Elkeles & Phillips, 2007, p. 90). In order to assess the employees’ skills in respecting and promoting diversity in the workplace, it is necessary to use questionnaires that provide the qualitative information and structured tests that provide the quantitative information on the employees’ needs.

The Analysis of the Needs Assessment Data

Having conducted a needs assessment, it is necessary to analyze the collected data according to its type. Thus, quantitative and qualitative data are analyzed separately. While discussing questionnaires and the presented qualitative data, it is necessary to focus on the skills, successes, challenges, and barriers mentioned by employees in their answers. Such personal information as the employees’ visions of teamwork, individual work, diversity, job satisfaction, and motivation is important to determine the content of the training program (Pless & Maak, 2004, p. 129). The quantitative needs assessment results should be categorized in a table or chart, and they present the areas for improvement and training referring to numbers and percents.

Preliminary Recommendations

Referring to the analyzed needs assessment data, it is possible to note that the employees of the health care facility need to receive more training on using the advantages of diversity in their workplace. As a result, the best learning initiative for this organization is the on-the-job training program oriented to educating managers and employees in the sphere of promoting diversity in the workplace.

The first recommendation to follow while planning the training program is the focus on hiring the outside specialist in the sphere of diversity training in order to organize the coaching sessions for managers and employees (Frigo, 2008, p. 25). The second recommendation is the focus on using the system of seminars and workshops conducted by the organization’s HR specialists in order to address the learners’ different needs and interests, to apply the training to the organization’s activities, and to promote the principles of respecting diversity.

Barriers in Securing Approval for Intervention

The on-the-job training program which needs hiring outside specialists and trainers is an expensive intervention that requires the revision of the organization’s budget. From this point, possible barriers in securing approval for the stated recommendation are the focus of the management team on the budget limits and the necessity to pay much attention to the ROI calculation in order to predict benefits for the organization (Antariksa, 2007; Deiser, 2009, p. 58). The determined barriers can be overcome with the focus on the accurate calculation of the expected benefits associated with the training’s implementation.

Barriers in Implementing Intervention

Implementing the intervention, it is also possible to observe such barriers as the problems with equipping the facilities, scheduling the program activities, combining the regular job activities with the on-the-job training, and administration. In order to overcome the identified barriers, it is necessary to plan the implementation of the program effectively, with the focus on the details associated with the budget and other material issues (Ellinger, Ellinger, Yang, & Howton, 2002, p. 5). Much attention should be paid to predicting changes in the budget associated with the organization’s regular activities.


In order to respond to the organization’s goal and to contribute to making the company an effective learning organization, it is necessary to implement effective training programs that address the organization’s needs. A needs assessment as the analysis of the organization’s specific needs can be effectively used to identify the areas for improvement. Training programs oriented to promoting diversity are effective at health care facilities. To implement the program successfully, much attention should be paid to the data collection stage of the needs assessment, to the proper analysis of the received data, and to predicting possible barriers in the implementation process.


Antariksa, Y. (2007). Measuring ROI of training. Web.

Deiser, R. (2009). Designing the smart organization. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Elkeles, T., & Phillips, J. (2007). The chief learning officer: Driving value within a changing organization through learning and development. Burlington, MA: Butterworth-Heinemann.

Ellinger, A. D., Ellinger, A. E., Yang, B., & Howton, S. (2002). The relationship between the learning organization concept and firms’ financial performance: An empirical assessment. Human Resource Development Quarterly, 13(1), 5-22.

Frigo, M. (2008). Return driven: Lessons from high-performance companies. Strategic Finance, 90(1), 25-30.

Pless, N., & Maak, T. (2004). Building an inclusive diversity culture: Principles, processes and practice. Journal of Business Ethics, 54(2), 129-147.

Negotiating Ethical Conflicts In Nursing


Negotiating ethical conflicts is part of a nurse’s everyday duties. However, this does not mean that all nurses can make effective ethical decisions. The judgment may be impaired by a variety of factors, including personal beliefs, lack of information about a patient’s culture, moral distress from having to make difficult choices, and more. In addition, workplace policies and regulations may obstruct the decision-making process, for instance, if there are specified procedures for certain cases that may not be ethically right for individual patients. Nevertheless, there is a set of practices that the nurses should apply to ethical decision-making to ensure successful negotiation of conflicts.

Respecting Patient’s Privacy and Confidentiality

The American Nurses Association (ANA, 2015) recommends the nurses to ensure that patient’s right to privacy and confidentiality of information are preserved at all times throughout the care process. This is especially relevant to the challenges posed by telehealth technologies and the use of technology for storing and transferring patients’ data.

According to the ANA (2015), the patients should be given the right “to decide to whom, and under what circumstances, their individually identifiable health information will be disclosed” (p. 1). Moreover, the patients should be notified of any case when the information must be disclosed to third parties (ANA, 2015). Disclosure of any private information without the patient’s consent may lead to undesired consequences, including the patient’s moral distress, which could worsen the existing ethical conflict.

Considering Patient’s Cultural Values and Beliefs

One of the main challenges that nurses of the 21st Century face are the need to treat patients’ from different and often unfamiliar cultural backgrounds (McClimens, Brewster, & Lewis, 2014). When an ethical conflict arises, nurses may decide to treat it from the perspective of their own culture, which may, in some cases, contradict the patient’s cultural values and beliefs. McClimens et al. (2014) stress the importance of considering the patients’ culture in the decision-making process: “Recognising and respecting cultural diversity is essential to ensure that individual patients’ needs are met” (p. 52).

One of the ways to gather appropriate information regarding the patient’s cultural values and beliefs is by assessing the twelve domains of the Purnell Model for Cultural Competence, which include characteristics such as communication, family roles, death rituals, spirituality, and more (McClimens et al., 2014). The care provided to a person should not contradict his or her cultural values and traditions, as identified by the assessment.

Holding Family Conferences

According to Wood (2014), one of the ways to address ethical dilemmas and moral distress is to hold a family conference. This practice should not contradict the previous two recommendations regarding the patient’s privacy and culture. As long as the patient gives consent to disclose information to his or her family and including the family in the decision-making process does not conflict with the patient’s cultural values, holding family conferences may be a good way to resolve any ethical dilemmas in care. This option should also be used if the patient is unable to provide the information needed to ensure positive ethical care, for instance, if he or she is unconscious or incapable of communicating clearly. In this case, the patient’s family becomes a source of cultural information, which can be utilized in the decision-making process.


Overall, the best way to negotiate ethical conflicts in nursing is by using the patient-centered approach. Ensuring that the decisions made by the nurse or the doctors do not violate the patient’s privacy or cultural values will help to avoid moral distress and improve the quality of care by offering an individual approach to each person.


American Nurses Association (ANA). (2015). American Nurses Association Position Statement on privacy and confidentiality.

McClimens, A., Brewster, J., & Lewis, R. (2014). Recognising and respecting patients’ cultural diversity. Nursing Standard, 28(28), 45-52.

Wood, D. (2014). 10 best practices for addressing ethical issues and moral distress.

Forecasting, Risk Management, And Decision-Making


Risk is a situation that exposes one to danger. It involves exposing a person to something that is valued to danger, loss or harm. Risk is, therefore, a threat or probability of injury, liability, damage or another negative occurrence. It is the possibility of incurring a loss or misfortune, for example, in a business or insurance company (Tversky & Kahneman, 1973, p. 220). Business risk is the probability of danger or loss in the operation of an organization and environment such as adverse economic conditions and competition.

The loss can impair the ability of the organization to provide returns on investment (Nisibet & Ross, 1980, p. 116). There is a risk that organizations may experience a hard period of poor earnings, mainly due to competition or adverse economic conditions. Business risk is common in relatively new businesses and cyclical firms. Business risk affects all the stakeholders of a business, from the holders of stocks and bonds to the cleaners (Schwarz, 1991). It can be a risk if a company goes bankrupt or the sale of a particular product decreases due to competition. It is a norm for every company to carry a business risk that it may have trouble in the cash flow to maintain operations (Waenke, Schwarz, & Bless, 1995, p.110).

There are various sources of business risk. Some sources are systematic while others are unsystematic. There are some components of business risk, which have a greater impact than others. Every company takes the risk that the broader economy may perform poorly, therefore, affecting its sales. Also, customers may dislike the company’s products. The business risk could arise due to external factors that the company can do nothing about, or its problems.

The company has no control over external factors. Examples of external factors are declining economy, changes in regulations affecting the industry, and a decreased demand for services or products. Internal factors are easily controllable since they arise from within. Internal factors of business risks are problems within a company. Some of the internal factors of business risk include the company initiatives, overhead costs, and the company’s budget (Dawes et al, 1993).

There are three major factors that should be considered in business, when evaluating the possibility of investing in a company. They include external factors in the business marketplace, easily fixable internal factors, and the state of the organization’s assets and securities. The risk factor affects the company’s pricing securities and stock. The decline of security in a company shows an increased risk of investing in that organization. When the price of securities goes up, the organization is safe for investment (Waenke, Schwarz, & Bless, 1995, p. 131).

Impact of decision-making heuristics, bias and risk preference

Various factors affect decision-making. These factors include cognitive biases, belief in personal relevance, escalating commitment, past experience, age, and personal differences. A heuristic is a shortcut that allows people to make judgments fast, effectively and efficiently to solve problems. These rules of decision-making strategies shorten the time used in making decisions and allow people to work without having to think about the next course of action. This is a trial and error method of solving problems through exploration. There is no guarantee that the problem will be solved (Nisibet & Ross, 1980, p. 116).

Heuristics are very helpful on many occasions, but also lead to biases. Since heuristics involves the use of prior experience and available information, bias can be easily manifested in the process. Whether conscious or unconscious, heuristics ignores some of the information. Heuristics leads to biases and risk preferences, which sometimes lead to high-perceived risk and low perceived expected returns. The perceptions may lead to unnecessary depression in cost. However, after the disappearance of unnecessary depression, excessive returns will be realized (Waenke, Schwarz, & Bless, 1995, p. 135).

Drug abuse is a common problem affecting many workplaces. Some workers abuse drugs, which affect their productivity for the company. This could lead to a reduction in the production of the whole company. This could also put the drug abuser and his fellow workmates at risk, especially if it is a production industry, which involves the use of machines (Bar-Hillel & Neter, 1986, p. 1120).

Decision-making heuristics

There are three major decision-making heuristics. These are representativeness heuristic, availability heuristic and anchoring and adjustment (Folke, 1988, p. 265). Representativeness is a situation where the possibility of a hypothesis is described by finding out the resemblance between the available and the existing data. It is a cognitive bias where people categorize a particular situation based on a pattern of previous experiences and beliefs about the situation (Tversky & Kahneman, 1983, p. 300).

Availability heuristic assesses the possibility or occurrence of an incident, based on the way relationships take place. In availability heuristic, decision-making relies on the readily available knowledge rather than an examination of other procedures or alternatives. People judge the probability of events by the ease with which it occurs. Therefore, incidences in availability heuristic have higher chances of occurring if similar occurrences are considered. Decisions making is based on what can be remembered rather than the complete data (Kehneman, Tversky & Slovic, 1982, p. iv).

Adjustment and anchoring heuristics are about making decisions under circumstances of uncertainty. To reach a conclusion, the anchor is established and then changed inadequately. For example, a person’s productivity can be measured by making your productivity as the anchor or reference point (Folke, 1988, p. 282). The productivity of the person in comparison is then rated depending on the level of productivity. There is a tendency of making judgments by starting with a reference point or an anchor and then adjusting the estimate to reach a conclusion (Waenke, Schwarz, & Bless, 1995). From the above three decision-making heuristics, anchoring and adjustment best fit the method to be used in a company to determine the level of drug abuse by different employees (Tversky & Kahneman, 1973, p. 185).

Decision-making biases

The following are some of the common cognitive biases that influence or affect people’s decisions. The confirmation bias is where people readily collect information that regards certain judgments while overlooking other information that supports alternative judgments. On the other hand, a situation where people do not readily change their prior thinking in regard to new circumstances is referred to as inertia bias. In selective perception, information that is thought to be unimportant is screened out. Repetition bias is the unwillingness to believe or trust what has been said most often, and by the highest number of various sources (Lynch, 2008).

Adjustment and anchoring provide that decision making is affected by the original information, which impacts on the direction of the succeeding information. Group thinking takes place where peers influence each other, hence, forcing others to adopt their ideas and opinions. In regency, people tend to take seriously recent information more than distant or old information. In source credibility bias, people tend to reject things or information if they have a bias towards the reporter. People have a tendency to receive, accept and reciprocate information from reporters they like (Folke, 1988, p. 255).

Role fulfillment bias explains the tendency of people to conform to the decision-making expectations of someone in their position (Waenke, Schwarz, & Bless, 1995, p. 131). Underestimating uncertainty and the illusion of control also shows the tendency of people to believe that they can controllably eliminate potential problems in their decisions.

Incremental decision-making and escalating commitment-decision is looked at as a small step in a big process, perpetuates a series of same decisions (Pearl & Judea, 1983). Usually, untimely end of search by evidence people take the first choice that appears to work. Wishful thinking or optimism bias people tend to alter their attitude and judgment because of their relentless effort of getting positive results. Choice-supportive bias people’s “minds or memories are distorted on chosen and rejected options in making their chosen options” (Kehneman, Tversky & Slovic, 1982, p. iii).

The three biases that apply to the problem of drug abusiveness by employees are anchoring and adjustment, incremental decision making, and escalating commitment, and role fulfillment. Initial information about the abuse of drugs will help the employer to decide on the kind of decision to make. The expectations of people in the position one are holding play part in the kind of decision one makes (Kehneman, Tversky & Slovic, 1982, p. iv).

Risk implication

The implications of the problem could be devastating to a company or organization. Some workers abuse drugs, which affects their productivity for the company. This could lead to a breakdown or reduction of the production of the whole company. This could also put the drug abuser and his fellow workmates at risk especially if it is a production industry (Carroll, 1978, p. 65).

Risk management process

Risk management involves five stages, which go simultaneously. The first stage involves risk identification. It is the most vital step since nothing can be done until a problem is identified. The identification of the risk starts at its origin. The origin of drug abuse is identified first before the next procedure is done. In risk analysis, the analysis of the risk is done and its vulnerability or impact measured (Waenke, Schwarz, & Bless, 1995, p. 131). The frequency and severity of the problem or risk are also measured. Risk control involves making decisions on how to control the risk. If the risk cannot be controlled, then it should be transferred. For example, if the employees have indulged themselves so much on drug abuse that they cannot stop it, the best way to solve the problem is to fire them (Tversky & Kahneman, 1974, p. 214).

Risk transfer comes in when the risk is not manageable. It is transferred to the third party. Insurance comes into action in this stage (Folke, 1988). Risk review involves evaluating all the above procedures. A review of the risk management steps should be done regularly since the conditions and circumstances of organizations change continuously (Kehneman, Tversky & Slovic, 1982, p. ii).


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