OBJECTIVES AND ATTRIBUTES
KEY OBJECTIVES OF THE BUSINESS EXCELLENCE OS
Business success is achieved when the following seven areas of business focus are addressed simultaneously (Ref. Baldrige Award):
How leadership is exercised;
How strategy is developed and deployed;
How focus is maintained on key markets and customers;
How staff is developed and how an environment is created for them that fosters excellence;
How processes are developed and used consistently to both lead as well as to work, and how these processes are continually improved;
How information is designed, gathered and analyzed to make fact-based decisions; and
How a strategic performance measurement system is designed and used to manage the company, its functions and its services.
Common Issues that hinder organizations from achieving lasting business success
Leadership direction not clearly articulated and cascaded;
Vision, mission, strategies, processes and metrics not linked at all levels;
Processes for both leadership and work not defined and linked;
Framework to ensure fact-based decision-making not established; and
Approach for systematic continuous improvement not defined.
The Business Excellence OS addresses the seven business areas as well as solves these common business issues.
KEY ATTRIBUTES OF THE BUSINESS EXCELLENCE OS
Leadership has to be planned to be effective. Every function needs clear direction. Clear direction means a clear mission, vision, strategies and associated measures. Achieving this clarity is an effective and simple way to ensure focus and alignment.
Functions and Services: Every function needs clarity on how to achieve its purpose in alignment with the company’s mission, vision and strategies. This cannot be an activity-based process. That is why in the Business Excellence OS, work is referred to as a set of ‘services’, and a question is asked: “What services does a function deliver?” This allows the following set of simple questions to be asked: “What is the tangible output of this work? Is it of value in achieving the company’s strategy? Who benefits from it and are they satisfied with the way it is delivered? What process is used to deliver this output and is it continually improved? And finally, what skills are needed to deliver this output and is there a program for the development and/or acquisition of enough of these skills to achieve future requirements?”
Strategic Focus: Strategy needs to be developed and quickly cascaded throughout the organization. The Business Excellence OS framework speedily assesses which functions and which services need to take action in response to the strategy. However, one can’t do this without investing the time to develop the function and service ‘stories’. So, careful balance is needed between responding to immediate priorities and making the time to develop the leadership framework that enables the speed and focus needed to deploy strategy. Experience shows that organizations never have ‘natural’ time to plan. Priority has to be given to future planning. This is a leadership prerogative.
Generic Versus Specific Strategy: There are ‘generic’ strategic expectations by the shareholders, clients and employees. The company and its functions have to be aligned to deliver on these expectations. The Business Excellence OS offers a framework that addresses ALL these generic expectations at the function level. However, specific strategies need to be developed for the company and cascaded to each function to take advantage of market conditions and seize the opportunities the business case assumes. These conditions are dynamic and volatile and the organization has to quickly respond with clear strategies. Regular strategy review sessions need to take place to develop these strategies and cascade them to each function.
Performance Measurement and the Balanced Scorecard: Leadership has a dual focus. One is strategic and the other operational. The strategic focus needs to address requirements in four critical areas: Financial, Customer, Process and Learning (from the Balanced Scorecard). The strategic focus derives from the business proposition and the ever-changing market conditions and continually develops future direction. The operational focus derives from the strategic focus and ensures that the strategic direction is implemented. Unless leaders force the attention on the strategic focus, the operational focus, which only satisfies current requirements, will consume all the attention.
Business Excellence OS Critical Success Factors: Once the company’s Balanced Scorecards, with their strategic and operational focus, are designed, all metrics have to be collected by each function and service, trended and regularly used for:
i) Company, function and service performance review;
ii) Personal objective setting, evaluation and rewards; and
iii) Allocating resources by service value and performance (people and costs).
Building and using a lasting leadership framework is vital for achieving a company’s expectations of success. The Business Excellence OS offers an answer to this need.
PROVEN WORLD CLASS STRATEGIC
BUSINESS EXCELLENCE OS (BEOS)