1. Baldrige is answer to how to create the culture you need

    April 21, 2016 by ahmed


    Originally posted on Blogrige by Dawn Marie Bailey

    Only one person on the planet can claim to have led three organizations to Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Awards. And he did it with a focus on people, purpose, passion, and a whole lot of role-model leadership.

    Being honored with the 2016 Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award, John Heer, Jr., former president and CEO of Baldrige Award recipients North Mississippi Health Services (Tupelo, MS), North Mississippi Medical Center, and Baptist Hospital, Inc. (Pensacola, FL), said “I love Baldrige. I love everything about it. It’s such a good role model.”

    Heer said he was first introduced to the Baldrige Health Care Criteria around 1996, “I read through the Criteria, and I thought, man, that’s how you run a great company.”

    Despite being honored for his role-model leadership and commitment to advancing excellence, Heer said he hasn’t done it alone. In addition to thanking his wife, Polyanna, and God, thousands of employees helped him make excellence happen.

    “One person can’t win the Baldrige Award,” he said, “It has to be an entire organization. From somebody sweeping the floor, to the cook back in the cafeteria, to the CEO, to the board. Everybody has to be involved, and I’ve worked literally with thousands of people over the years who I love dearly and really appreciate all of the effort they have put into really what I would call more than Baldrige. What I would call culture. . . . None of the organizations that I’ve been associated with ever really said, ‘We’re doing Baldrige.’ We were. But what we were really doing was creating a great culture. And if you look through the Baldrige Criteria and really study them, that’s what you’ll see, that it’s culture. That’s what Baldrige is all about.”

    Heer said culture is something that he’s “passionate about, something that I love, something that I feel is my purpose in life.” He founded P3Leadership: People, Purpose, Passion to share tips and articles about culture and leadership.

    Through the 1990s and early 2000s, you rarely heard people talking about culture, even in Baldrige circles, he said; when Baptist Hospital was honored with the Baldrige Award in 2003, among seven organizational recipients that year, not one senior leader mentioned culture in acceptance speeches.

    At the 2015 Baldrige Award ceremony in early April, every single person who came up on stage talked about culture, said Heer; “I think what we’re seeing is a big change in the business environment now. People are starting to realize how important culture is.”

    But “as employers grasp its importance, they also realize that they have no clue where to begin in creating the culture that they need. And you know what my answer to that is, right here. Baldrige can help you create that kind of a culture,” he said. “We’ve got a recognition now that culture is extremely important, but then we’ve also got the recognition that a lot of people really don’t know what culture is or how to start to change it.”

    Heer shared quotes from Peter Drucker (“Culture eats strategy for breakfast.”) and Investopedia.com: “Corporate culture refers to the beliefs and behaviors that determine how a company’s employees and management interact and handle outside business transactions. Often, corporate culture is implied, not expressly defined, and develops organically over time from the cumulative traits of the people the company hires.”

    “Now think about that for just a second,” said Heer. “Does that scare you to think about a company that basically just lets things happen? They doesn’t really have a plan? ‘[Culture] develops organically over time’. . . . How many CEOs get fired from these companies? . . . [As we hire people] we’re finding what kind of culture we are actually creating in this company. That’s scary.”

    Heer referred to a Fortune magazine article “How to Build the Perfect Workplace” by Geoff Colvin, who wrote, “The secret to attracting and holding on to the world’s best talent isn’t about the perks—it’s about relationships. . . . You’ve realized by now that we’re talking about culture, the way people behave from moment to moment without being told. More employers are seeing the connection from culture and relationships to workplace greatness to business success.”

    Added Heer, “What’s most common among Baldrige Award winners and other role models is great culture and great people. Culture in a nutshell from my perspective is who you are, how you behave, your relationships.” And he took it a step further, defining a servant culture: “A servant culture is a servant leader, servant-led employees, a servant environment designed to ensure that employees’ highest-priority needs are being met, with character that inspires confidence. [A servant culture is] mission-driven, vision-focused, values-centered, employee-centered, and customer-devoted.”

    Heer defined the characteristics of servant leadership: humility, patience, guidance, respect, selflessness, forgiveness, honesty, commitment, results-oriented, a no-excuses environment, no egos, team accomplishments.

    He said part of the servant culture focus on employees has to do with their great importance on the front-line. “So why is focusing on employees so important? This is a little tongue and check, but who is going to implement all of your great ideas? Who is going to make your products or deliver your services? Who is going to give great customer service? Who is going to control your costs? Who is going to help you grow your data and information? If you think about it, the front-line is what customers see. They don’t see what goes on in the leadership section. . . . [The front-line] makes a huge difference [on how customers view the organization.] Seriously. It’s the right thing to do. It’s about treating others the way that we want to be treated. Create a superior culture, which leads to dedicated employees and decreases turnover.” He added that in health care the costs to recruit, hire, train, and ensure a fully functioning new registered nurse total at least $40,000.

    To be a servant leader, you have to be trusted, empowering, and respectful, and you have to ensure focus, discipline, execution, and, added Heer, a whole lot of prayer.

    • Focus: Means continued alignment and reference to the mission, vision, values, and critical success factors. “You can’t let the employees forget why you are there and what things are about,” he said. And “don’t chase rabbits,” meaning don’t keep changing your leadership initiatives, he added.
    • Discipline: Means eliminate programs that don’t relate to the mission, vision, values, and critical success factors. Be able to say no in a nice way if a new idea doesn’t fit with the mission or strategic plan, for example, he said.
    • Execution: Means clearly and widely communicate. You have to let people know why you are doing something; it has to be tied back to the mission, vision, values, or critical success factors.

    “It doesn’t sound like very complicated stuff does it?” he asked. “Then why do so many of us not do it. Create, monitor, measure. Reward and recognize champions. Coach low performers. You may have to move some senior leaders out of leadership or out of the organization.”

    Heer summed up his vision of servant leadership, saying, “Imagine a workforce so engaged that they were giving you great ideas, they were innovating, they were willing to make the changes that you were trying to instate. . . . They create customer loyalty, higher-quality products and services. They actually participate and help with financial performance, and you can have growth because you’re doing all of those things well.”

  2. Webinar: The secret sauce used by rapid growth businesses

    April 20, 2016 by ahmed

    No Masterchef would dare plate up a dish without the sauce – that magic ingredient that pulls together, or integrates all the different flavours into a coherent dish ready for the diner’s experience.

    Business is no different. 70% of businesses fail to achieve their true potential. And yet they are nearly there. All the components are in place. It is just they are missing the essential ‘sauce’ that provides coherence and alignment in their business.

    Our April webinar Step Up: The secret sauce used by rapid growth businesses

    covers a proven 4 step process for removing those barriers that stop them from achieving success; the secret sauce that is missing from business that no one talks about.

    Click on the link below to find out more and book your place on this 60 minute webinar.

    Step Up: The secret sauce used by rapid growth businesses

  3. School boards and the Baldrige Framework = Excellent results

    April 16, 2016 by ahmed


    Originally posted on Blogrige by Christine Schaefer

    The 2013 Baldrige Award-winning Pewaukee School District of Wisconsin began using the Education Criteria for Performance Excellence (part of the Baldrige Excellence Framework) at the prompting of a school board member, according to its superintendent, JoAnn Sternke. Larry Dux—then clerk of the Pewaukee School District Board of Education—was familiar with the Baldrige framework’s value to the business sector from his work. Dux believed his school district could benefit just as for-profit organizations had from adopting a systems approach to improving its performance, among other Baldrige core concepts.

    He was right. As Sternke’s high-performing school system has since demonstrated, the Baldrige Education Criteria can be used as a self-assessment tool by a school and, better yet, the entire school system to improve performance in all key areas. Those include leadership and governance systems; strategic planning and development; approaches to engaging and supporting students, stakeholders, and employees; knowledge and data management as well as performance measurement; operations; and results.

    Sternke and Liz Menzer—a longtime school board member and a leader in both Wisconsin’s Baldrige-based program and the nationwide network of local programs known as the Alliance for Performance Excellence—presented earlier this week on the Baldrige framework’s benefits to school boards at the 2016 annual meeting of the National School Boards Association (NSBA). I recently asked them to share some key information about their presentation for readers of the Baldrige blog.

    As background, Sternke noted that NSBA has identified the following as core skill areas that effective boards of education need to ensure that all students achieve at high levels: vision, accountability, policy, community leadership, and relationships.

    “These five dovetail beautifully with the Baldrige framework,” said Sternke. “In fact, the Baldrige framework supports and makes these concepts become actionable. This is the focus of our presentation at the National School Board Association conference (held in Boston, April 9–11).”

    When asked why school boards can find the Baldrige framework valuable, Menzer responded, “Ensuring that public education will meet emerging challenges requires a clear vision for the work and operations of school boards in the future. The Baldrige framework can help boards shape proactive strategies that make school board members more relevant, credible, and effective leaders of public education.”

    Sternke and Menzer each shared examples of the value they described, based on their respective experiences in school communities in Wisconsin.

    “Using the Baldrige framework has helped our organization better utilize people, plan, and use processes to achieve [desired] results,” said Sternke. “Our board and our senior leaders clearly know their roles and their key work as we pursue our mission to open the door to each child’s future.”

    For her part, Menzer said, “Using the framework has made us more data-driven, and this makes us better decision makers. It also makes us better ambassadors for public education because we can be less anecdotal and more factual about the good things going on in our public schools.”

    Sternke and Menzer also provided their answers for three questions school boards are likely to ask about adopting the Baldrige framework, as follows:

    1. Does adopting the Baldrige framework add more work for school boards?

    Menzer: “No, it just organizes your work and provides focus.”

    2. How do you get started?

    Sternke: “The state-level, Baldrige-based programs of the Alliance (see link above) throughout the country can be great resources for educational leaders. In fact, Pewaukee School District got started with the support of the Wisconsin Center for Performance Excellence, which is headed by Liz Menzer.”

    3. What’s the board’s role and the superintendent’s role in pursuing school/district improvement?

    Sternke and Menzer: “One of the nice things about using Key Work of School Boards along with the Baldrige Excellence Framework is that these resources provide clear direction about governance versus operations. The first clearly presents differing roles that superintendents and school board members hold in education organizations that function optimally. These roles are supported by the Baldrige framework, which aligns the focus for all and also identifies the line between leadership (the work of senior leaders) and governance (the work of the board).”

  4. Critical things ridiculously successful people do every day

    April 13, 2016 by ahmed


    Originally posted on Linkedin by Dr. Travis Bradberry

    Having close access to ultra-successful people can yield some pretty incredible information about who they really are, what makes them tick, and, most importantly, what makes them so successful and productive.

    “Whenever you see a successful person, you only see the public glories, never the private sacrifices to reach them.” – Vaibhav Shah

    Kevin Kruse is one such person. He recently interviewed over 200 ultra-successful people, including 7 billionaires, 13 Olympians, and a host of accomplished entrepreneurs. One of his most revealing sources of information came from their answers to a simple open-ended question:

    “What is your number one secret to productivity?”

    In analyzing their responses, Kruse coded the answers to yield some fascinating suggestions. What follows are some of my favorites from Kevin’s findings.

    They focus on minutes, not hours. Most people default to hour and half-hour blocks on their calendar; highly successful people know that there are 1,440 minutes in every day and that there is nothing more valuable than time. Money can be lost and made again, but time spent can never be reclaimed. As legendary Olympic gymnast Shannon Miller told Kevin, “To this day, I keep a schedule that is almost minute by minute.” You must master your minutes to master your life.

    They focus on only one thing. Ultra-productive people know what their “Most Important Task” is and work on it for one to two hours each morning, without interruptions. What task will have the biggest impact on reaching your goals? What accomplishment will get you promoted at work? That’s what you should dedicate your mornings to every day.

    They don’t use to-do lists. Throw away your to-do list; instead schedule everything on your calendar. It turns out that only 41% of items on to-do lists ever get done. All those undone items lead to stress and insomnia because of the Zeigarnik effect, which, in essence, means that uncompleted tasks will stay on your mind until you finish them. Highly productive people put everything on their calendar and then work and live by that calendar.

    They beat procrastination with time travel. Your future self can’t be trusted. That’s because we are time inconsistent. We buy veggies today because we think we’ll eat healthy salads all week; then we throw out green rotting mush in the future. Successful people figure out what they can do now to make certain their future selves will do the right thing. Anticipate how you will self-sabotage in the future, and come up with a solution today to defeat your future self.

    They make it home for dinner. Kevin first learned this one from Intel’s Andy Grove, who said, “There is always more to be done, more that should be done, always more than can be done.” Highly successful people know what they value in life. Yes, work, but also what else they value. There is no right answer, but for many, these other values include family time, exercise, and giving back. They consciously allocate their 1,440 minutes a day to each area they value (i.e., they put them on their calendar), and then they stick to that schedule.

    They use a notebook. Richard Branson has said on more than one occasion that he wouldn’t have been able to build Virgin without a simple notebook, which he takes with him wherever he goes. In one interview, Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis said, “Always carry a notebook. Write everything down. . .. That is a million dollar lesson they don’t teach you in business school!” Ultra-productive people free their minds by writing everything down as the thoughts come to them.

    They process e-mails only a few times a day. Ultra-productive people don’t “check” their e-mail throughout the day. They don’t respond to each vibration or ding to see who has intruded into their inbox. Instead, like everything else, they schedule time to process their e-mails quickly and efficiently. For some, that’s only once a day; for others, it’s morning, noon, and night.

    They avoid meetings at all costs. When Kevin asked Mark Cuban to give his best productivity advice, he quickly responded, “Never take meetings unless someone is writing a check.” Meetings are notorious time killers. They start late, have the wrong people in them, meander around their topics, and run long. You should get out of meetings whenever you can and hold fewer of them yourself. If you do run a meeting, keep it short and to the point.

    They say “no” to almost everything. Billionaire Warren Buffet once said, “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.” And James Altucher colorfully gave Kevin this tip: “If something is not a ‘Hell Yeah!’ then it’s a no.” Remember, you only have 1,440 minutes in a day. Don’t give them away easily.

    They follow the 80/20 rule. Known as the Pareto Principle, in most cases, 80% of results come from only 20% of activities. Ultra-productive people know which activities drive the greatest results. Focus on those and ignore the rest.

    They delegate almost everything. Ultra-productive people don’t ask, “How can I do this task?” Instead, they ask, “How can this task get done?” They take the I out of it as much as possible. Ultra-productive people don’t have control issues, and they are not micro-managers. In many cases, good enough is, well, good enough.

    They touch things only once. How many times have you opened a piece of regular mail—a bill perhaps—and then put it down, only to deal with it again later? How often do you read an e-mail and then close it and leave it in your inbox to deal with later? Highly successful people try to “touch it once.” If it takes less than five or ten minutes—whatever it is—they deal with it right then and there. It reduces stress, since it won’t be in the back of their minds, and it is more efficient, since they won’t have to re-read or re-evaluate the item again in the future.

    They practice a consistent morning routine. Kevin’s single greatest surprise while interviewing over 200 highly successful people was how many of them wanted to share their morning ritual with him. While he heard about a wide variety of habits, most nurtured their bodies in the morning with water, a healthy breakfast, and light exercise, and they nurtured their minds with meditation or prayer, inspirational reading, or journaling.

    Energy is everything. You can’t make more minutes in the day, but you can increase your energy to increase your attention, focus, and productivity. Highly successful people don’t skip meals, sleep, or breaks in the pursuit of more, more, more. Instead, they view food as fuel, sleep as recovery, and breaks as opportunities to recharge in order to get even more done.

    Bringing It All Together
    You might not be an entrepreneur, an Olympian, or a billionaire (or even want to be), but their secrets just might help you to get more done in less time and assist you to stop feeling so overworked and overwhelmed.

    What do you do to stay productive? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below, as I learn just as much from you as you do from me.

  5. Commerce deputy secretary honors 4 organizations with 2015 Baldrige Award

    April 9, 2016 by ahmed

    2015 Baldrige

    Originally posted on Blogrige

    Describing them as “the nation’s role models for excellence,” U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews presented four U.S. organizations on April 3, 2016, with the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the nation’s highest honor for organizational innovation and performance excellence.

    Andrews said, “Only a handful of organizations each year earn a Baldrige [Award] crystal. But thousands more reap the benefits from using the Baldrige approach to measure and improve their performance. The Baldrige Framework is a systems approach that doesn’t just recognize excellent organizations—it helps create them. What’s even more impressive is that the structure Baldrige provides for understanding and achieving performance excellence works for so many type kinds of organizations.”

    • MidwayUSA, Columbia, Mo. (small business; won in the same category in 2009)
    • Charter School of San Diego, San Diego, Calif. (education)
    • Charleston Area Medical Center Health System, Charleston, W.V. (health care)
    • Mid-America Transplant, St. Louis, Mo. (nonprofit)

    Remarks (as prepared for delivery) by U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews at the Baldrige Award Ceremony on April 3, 2016.
    Summary of Baldrige Award Ceremony on April 3, 2016, including highlights of remarks given by representatives of four 2015 Baldrige Award recipients

    Named after Malcolm Baldrige, the 26th Secretary of Commerce, the Baldrige Award was established by Congress in 1987 to enhance the competitiveness and performance of U.S. businesses. Eligibility for the award was expanded in 1998 to include education and health care, and again in 2007, to include nonprofit organizations. The Baldrige Performance Excellence Program, managed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in conjunction with the private sector, raises awareness about the importance of performance excellence in driving the U.S. and global economy; provides organizational assessments, training, tools and criteria; educates leaders in businesses, schools, health care organizations, and government and nonprofit organizations; shares the best practices of national role models; and recognizes those role models with the Baldrige Award.
    Since the first group was recognized in 1988, 109 Baldrige Awards have been presented to 102 organizations (including seven repeat recipients).