A grounded exploration of the dimensions of managerial capability: A preliminary study of top Australian pharmacist owner-managers

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Woods, Phillip
Gapp, Rod
King, Michelle A
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2015
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Abstract

Background: Australian community pharmacies are experiencing challenges, including government prescription pricing reform and a dramatically increasing competitive environment. Enacting appropriate responsive actions requires capable pharmacy managers. ‘Capability’ implies managing effectively in the present, but with unknown or emerging contexts and with new problems. A conceptual understanding of managerial capability as practiced by pharmacist owner-managers is unavailable in the literature. Objectives: This research aimed to address the question: How can we understand managerial capability in relation to effective community pharmacy management? The study’s objective was to develop preliminary theoretical departure points for continuing research responding to the research question. Methods: The objective was approached by exploring how 5 top Australian pharmacy owner-managers accomplish the management of their businesses in a changing business environment. Qualitative research methods were employed to develop a social process perspective of how the managers enact their management practices. In-depth semi-structured life-world interviews were undertaken as the major method of data collection. Interview text thematic analysis was carried out identifying rich conceptual properties and dimensions, which ‘dimensionalized’ 3 key integrated categories. Results: The findings show how the managers are immersed in their business, managerial and personal practices in a holistic and relational manner. Managerial processes, reported through three conceptual categories, their properties and dimensions, reveal the highly situational nature of the reality the managers were experiencing, including their need to express their personal/professional identity. The properties and dimensions of the category ‘learning generatively’ in particular, reveal how the pharmacy owner-managers shape their business activities and their emerging context as time passes. Conclusions: The preliminary interpretive view of managerial capability describes the phenomenon as an emergent human accomplishment rather than a possessed ability. This social process perspective enables the inclusion of context with time. The study acts as a formative departure point for continuing research of pharmacist managerial capability which seeks to better understand the linkage between ‘knowing’ and ‘doing’

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Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy

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This publication has been entered into Griffith Research Online as an Advanced Online Version.

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Pharmacology and pharmaceutical sciences

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