With so many changes coming to abut due to the pandemic of COVID-19, the workplace looks a little different. Being a part of an institution that is very culturally diverse, as a potential leader, there are many ways I can exhibit, acknowledge, address, and assess cultural differences. It is important to be culturally competent and ensure I am giving all patients and employees the respect they deserve. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) identifies cultural respect as an essential factor in reducing healthcare disparities and improving access to high-quality healthcare for diverse groups of patients. Failure to be culturally competent can lead to patient dissatisfaction (Importance of Cultural Competence, 2016).
For example, we currently have a monitoring system in place to check the temperatures of patients as they enter the doors of the hospital. If the monitoring system detects a high temp, it will warn you and prompt you to physically take that persons temperature. Often times it reads high temperature because of hats or head coverings people are wearing. To address cultural differences the entire team should be educated on why it is okay to ask an African American male to remove his hat and check his temperature, but it is not okay to ask a Muslim woman to remove her hijab. As a leader, if I fail to educate my team over the importance of respecting spiritual beliefs this could hurt our business. According to Rowitz, a culturally competent leader should examine thoughts, feelings, and develop cross-cultural skills necessary for enhancing organizational success (Rowitz, 2014).