1. Economic Impacts of Baldrige Excellence in Every State

    April 12, 2020 by BPIR.com Limited

    Originally posted on Blogrige by Christine Schaefer

    Recent Data, Searchable by State

    Did you know that you can easily access and download concise data about the economic benefits of Baldrige in all 50 states across the country, plus the District of Columbia, from the Baldrige Program’s website? As an example, let’s take a look at the latest data on the impacts of Baldrige in Texas (PDF).

    Texas Participants in the Baldrige Award Process

    The state of Texas is home to 19 organizations that have received Baldrige Awards. Those organizations represent nearly every sector of the U.S. economy. They include seven small businesses (with one two-time Baldrige Award recipient, Texas Nameplate Company, Inc. (PDF), five manufacturing businesses, a service business, three health care organizations, two education organizations, and one nonprofit (a municipal government).

    What’s more, between 2005 and 2019, 91 organizations that participated in the annual Baldrige Award process have been based in Texas. Six Baldrige Award applicants from Texas in the past three years (2017 through 2019) alone represent 20,909 jobs, 178 work locations, over $868 million in revenues/budgets, and an estimated 3.9 billion customers served.

    Through the rigorous performance evaluations provided as part of the Baldrige Award process, all applicant organizations from Texas over the years have received comprehensive feedback reports to help them improve work processes and results. Of course, the Baldrige evaluation feedback ultimately promoted the Texas-based organizations’ long-term success and, in turn, the economy of the state—and ultimately, the nation’s economy.

    Alamo Colleges District instructor Richard Jewell teaching a turbine engine class at St. Philip’s College Southwest Campus.

    Spotlight on Baldrige Award Winner: Alamo Colleges District

    A recent Baldrige Award recipient from Texas is Alamo Colleges District, the largest provider of higher education in South Texas. Its five independent colleges provide two-year degrees that focus on preparing students to transfer to baccalaureate-granting institutions and workforce development programs that help build new careers and meet the needs of businesses. The organization also encompasses ten education and training centers that offer a wide range of education and training for the community and military; and three district support operations centers.

    A few achievements of Alamo Colleges District:

    • 150% increase in four-year graduation rate, the best in the state
    • Increase in scholarship awardees from 580 to 2,175, plus increase in amount awarded in scholarships from $500,000 to over $2 million
    • Doubling in number of degrees and certificates awarded over four years, three times the state norm
    • 88.4% student satisfaction with the overall educational experience, more than two points higher than the national norm

    Like most other Baldrige Award recipients, Alamo Colleges District first received a top-tier, state or regional award for its high performance in an evaluation based on the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence (part of the Baldrige Excellence Framework). In 2016, Alamo Colleges District earned the Governor’s Texas Award for Performance Excellence (TAPE) of the Quality Texas Foundation. The feedback report that the organization received through the TAPE evaluation helped it improve its work processes and results.

    Quality Texas Foundation

    As a partner program serving organizations in its home state, the Quality Texas Foundation (QTF) relies on the national Baldrige Performance Excellence Program to develop and distribute the Baldrige Excellence Framework and related resources that help organizations in its region improve their performance. In this way, the federal Baldrige Program and its private-sector partner programs in the nonprofit Alliance for Performance Excellence (which counts QTF as a member) together help strengthen the entire U.S. economy. The journey to excellence of Alamo Colleges District, supported by evaluation services it received from both the national and state-level Baldrige programs, is just one example of how the Baldrige enterprise benefits America.

    “Baldrige evaluation feedback ultimately promoted the Texas organizations’ long-term success and, in turn, the economy of the state—and ultimately, the nation’s economy.”

    AHCA/NCAL National Quality Award Program

    Just as Alliance for Performance Excellence programs support business, nonprofit, health care, and education organizations in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, the AHCA/NCAL National Quality Award Program provides a pathway toward performance excellence for organizations that provide long-term and post-acute care services.

    The AHCA/NCAL program is based on the core values and award criteria of the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program. It offers tiered awards at Bronze, Silver, and Gold levels that represent a progression toward full assessment (at the Gold level) of an organization’s performance in all seven categories of the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence.

    For 2019, AHCA/NCAL reported six skilled-nursing facilities in the state of Texas as Silver Award recipients, along with 20 Bronze Award recipients (including 19 skilled-nursing facilities and one assisted-living organization).

    See how your state is now benefiting from the nationwide network of nonprofit programs that support continuous improvement, innovation, and excellent performance by organizations of every size and sector using the Baldrige Excellence Framework!


  2. Does Everyone Know What Your Mission Means (Expects)?

    March 18, 2020 by BPIR.com Limited

    Originally posted on Blogrige by Dawn Bailey

    “What is your organization attempting to accomplish?”
    According to the Baldrige Excellence Framework, this question addresses your mission: your organization’s overall function. The mission might define cus­tomers or markets served, distinctive or core competencies, or technologies used.

    A Mission Statement of the People

    In a wonderful speech from 2005, Sr. Mary Jean Ryan, president and CEO (retired) of SSM Health Care, the first Baldrige Award recipient in health care, said, “For any organization, the mission is the lifeblood. . . the fundamental reason why we do what we do.”

    She went on to talk about her health care system’s early challenges with not having a common mission statement, instead allowing its health care facilities across seven regions the autonomy to identify their own missions and values. SSM eventually “discovered” a 13-word mission statement, involving nearly 3,000 employees at every level of the organization from every one of its entities, she said.

    “It wouldn’t have taken long for our communications department to come up with a catchy mission statement . . . that everybody in the system could relate to,” said Ryan during her presentation. “But we realized that a mission statement . . . must be of the people, by the people, and for the people. . . . If a solid mix of employees has not helped create the mission statement, it will not truly belong to them, and the potential to transform your organization will be hindered.”

    In 1999, after a year-long process, SSM came up with the following mission statement that is still used today:

    “Through our exceptional health care services, we reveal the healing presence of God.”

    The SSM website says that the mission statement and values are known by every employee and used to guide decisions and how staff members treat one another. Ryan said, “The mission and values must . . . be an internal guidepost to our own behavior. Because if we don’t treat one another well, how can we ever expect that our patients will feel that they’ve experienced the healing presence of God?”

    “This wonderful experience of rearticulating our mission and values might never have happened had we not used the Baldrige framework to improve our organization,” added Ryan.

    Award Winners’ Mission Statements
    Recently, a Baldrige Executive Fellow took a look at the mission statements of the Baldrige Award recipients. I thought this was an interesting exercise, so I focused on the 25 health care winners that came after SSM won in 2002. The following were their missions at the time they won the Baldrige Award:

    2019
    Adventist Health White Memorial
    Los Angeles, CA
    Mission: “Living God’s love by inspiring health, wholeness and hope.”

    Mary Greeley Medical Center
    Ames, IA
    Mission: “To advance health through specialized care and personal touch.”

    2018
    Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center
    Jasper, IN
    Mission: “Christ’s healing mission of compassion empowers us to be for others through quality and excellence.”

    2017
    Adventist Health Castle
    Oahu, HI
    Mission: “Living God’s love by inspiring health, wholeness, and hope.”

    Southcentral Foundation (2017 and 2011 Baldrige Award winner)
    Anchorage, AK
    Mission: “Working together with the Native Community to achieve wellness through health and related services.”

    2016
    Kindred Nursing and Rehabilitation – Mountain Valley (now Mountain Valley of Cascadia)
    Kellogg, ID
    Mission: “To promote healing, provide hope, preserve dignity, and produce value, for each patient, resident, family member, customer, employee, and shareholder we serve.”

    Memorial Hermann Sugar Land Hospital
    Sugar Land, TX
    Mission: “A not-for-profit, community-owned, health system with spiritual values, dedicated to providing high-quality health services in order to improve the health of the people of Southeast Texas.”

    2015
    Charleston Area Medical Center Health System
    Charleston, WV
    Mission: “Striving to provide the best health care to every patient, every day.”

    2014
    Hill Country Memorial
    Fredericksburg, TX
    Mission: “Remarkable Always.”

    St. David’s HealthCare
    Austin, TX
    Mission: “To provide exceptional care to every patient, every day with a spirit of warmth, friendliness, and personal pride.”

    2013
    Sutter Davis Hospital
    Davis, CA
    Mission: “To enhance the well-being of people in the communities we serve, through a not-for-profit commitment to compassion and excellence in health care services.”

    2012
    North Mississippi Health Services
    Tupelo, MS
    Mission: “To be the provider of the best patient-centered care and health services in America.”

    2011
    Henry Ford Health System
    Detroit, MI
    Mission: “To improve human life through excellence in the science and art of health care and healing.”

    Schneck Medical Center
    Seymour, IN
    Mission: “To provide quality healthcare to all we serve.”

    2010
    Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital
    Downers Grove, IL
    Mission: “To serve the health needs of individuals, families, and communities through a wholistic approach.”

    2009
    AtlantiCare
    Egg Harbor Township, NJ
    Mission: “We deliver health and healing to all people through trusting relationships.”

    Heartland Health (now Mosaic)
    St. Joseph, MO
    Mission: “To improve the health of individuals and communities located in the Heartland region and provide the right care, at the right time, in the right place, at the right cost with outcomes second to none.”

    2008
    Poudre Valley Health System (now part of University of Colorado Health)
    Fort Collins, CO
    Mission: “To be an independent, non-profit organization and to provide innovative, comprehensive care of the highest quality, always exceeding customer expectations.”

    2007
    Mercy Health System (now part of MercyRockford Health System)
    Janesville WI
    Mission: “To provide exceptional healthcare services resulting in healing in the broadest sense.”

    Sharp HealthCare
    San Diego, CA
    Mission: “To improve the health of those we serve with a commitment to excellence in all that we do.”

    2006
    North Mississippi Medical Center
    Tupelo, MS
    Mission: “To continuously improve the health of the people of our region.”

    2005
    Bronson Methodist Hospital
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Mission: “Provide excellent healthcare services.”

    2004
    Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton
    Hamilton, NJ
    Mission: “Committed to Excellence Through Service. We exist to promote, preserve, and restore the health of our community.”

    2003
    Baptist Hospital, Inc.
    Pensacola, FL
    Mission: “To provide superior service based on Christian values to improve the quality of life for people and communities served.”

    Saint Luke’s Health System
    Kansas City, MO
    Mission: “Committed to the highest levels of excellence in providing health services to all patients in a caring environment. We are dedicated to medical research and education. As a member of the Saint Luke’s Health System, we are committed to enhancing the physical, mental, and spiritual health of the communities we serve.”

    Assessment of Mission Statements
    I think what these health care organizations are attempting to accomplish is pretty clear from reading these missions. I also think it’s interesting that embedded in these missions are the expectations for staff members of how to treat patients and one another. Patients and other customers might also have care expectations after reading such missions.

    • Have you thought about what your mission says about your organization?
    • Does each employee know what it means and how his/her job relates to and supports it?

    In other words, is your mission statement of the people?


  3. How Innovation Management Can Lead to Game-Changing Ideas

    March 1, 2020 by BPIR.com Limited

    Originally posted on Blogrige by Dawn Bailey

    The best organizations do not cultivate ideas by accident. This is true for Tri County Tech (TCT), a public career technology center in Oklahoma, and a 2018 Baldrige Award recipient, whose ideas come from empowering workforce members in a culture of continuous improvement, as well as involving them in innovation management.

    At the upcoming Quest for Excellence® Conference in March, Kim Smith, chief financial officer and director of operations, and Eric Randall, director of physical plant services and technology, will present “Rabbits and Resources:Workforce-Led Innovation,” offering strategies for innovation and
    process improvement.

    Innovation Management and Process Improvement

    “Our concept is that you never know where the next game-changing idea is going to come,” said Randall. TCT believes that by sharing and helping the workforce to understand data about the organization (from finances to resource priorities), workforce members are empowered to make better decisions.

    The presentation will offer ideas for managing improvement and innovation. It will also cover how the technology center allocates resources and prioritizes budget requests. A culture of continuous improvement, including process refinement, is critical to understanding resources. The presentation will detail how the center uses a process-based approach to determine what priorities for growth and innovation will be pursued.

    “We didn’t stop trying to improve just because we won the award,” said Smith. “We are constantly looking for ways to ensure continuous improvement.” For example, TCT’s senior leaders recently reviewed the center’s long-term strategic plan and major initiatives. Part of the review included the development of Vision 2025, which consists of a goal to continue the technical center’s journey of excellence to a second Baldrige Award win.

    Lessons Learned and Shared

    Randall said TCT has learned three big lessons on its Baldrige journey of continuous improvement:

    • Whether an organization is using the Baldrige Excellence Framework for growth or in active pursuit of the Baldrige Award, the initiative has to be leadership-driven. In other words, there has to be absolute buy-in from the top and senior leaders acting as the driving force behind implementing the framework.
    • It’s essential to have a vision that helps everyone understand his/her purpose in the organization. This helps workforce members stay engaged.
    • The organizational culture must support the vision.

    Tammie Strobel, deputy superintendent and chief quality officer, said that often organizations reach out to TCT for advice, especially in convincing CEOs that using the Baldrige Framework is the right thing to do.

    For us, using the framework as a model for how we operate our business has propelled us to outstanding results,” she said. “I would think most CEOs would be interested in results. . . . If you want to create an extremely satisfied workforce, have a strategic focus, and increase your bottom-line—whether it’s profit, patient outcomes, or, for us, student outcomes—using the Baldrige framework will help you achieve that.

    TCT has offered three best-practice sharing days, with another scheduled April 16 and 17, for organizations interested in learning more. This past fall, TCT was even visited by a delegation from New Zealand that included educators from Otago Polytechnic College. According to Strobel, the Kiwis were among the first to call TCT to congratulate it on its 2018 Baldrige Award win. The delegation included organizations interested in performance improvement, some of whom were in pursuit of the New Zealand Performance Excellence Award, which is modeled on the Baldrige Award. Over time, Strobel said, the TCT staff has stayed in touch and become friends with the Kiwis, offering support to them after their devastating volcano eruption in December 2019.

    Smith said she would describe organizations involved with Baldrige as collaborators, not as competitors. “Everyone wants to have better results and better outcomes. We’re not afraid of sharing ideas and processes from other people because it’s not competitive. We all want to help each other to become better organizations,” she said.

    Benefiting from the Baldrige Framework

    Randall said that the TCT staff believes that the Baldrige Excellence Framework would apply to any institution, including those in the education sector. “It helps you to focus on what your organization does best. It allows you to ask the brave questions. Certainly, for us, what should we stop doing, what should we get rid of, and why are we doing this if we aren’t the best in the world at it?” he said. “Ultimately, the framework for us has helped to improve student outcomes, which is why we are in business. We believe that every education organization can benefit in some way from using the framework as we did.”

    Over the past ten years, under the leadership of Superintendent and CEO Lindel Fields, TCT has been named a Great Place to Work in the United States for four consecutive years, the only public educational institution on the list. In addition, TCT engagement results for most workforce segments have been in the top 10 percent nationally since FY2014. TCT has more than doubled overall enrollments and grown its foundation to ensure that no student is denied an education due to lack of funds.


  4. Make the Baldrige Framework “How You Work”: Lessons from Adventist Health Castle

    February 21, 2020 by BPIR.com Limited

    Originally posted on Blogrige by Christine Schaefer

    When Steve Bovey first learned about the Baldrige Excellence Framework, he was impressed that it was not “another flavor of the month” among management fads. In contrast, he said he saw that it is “a systematic framework that can apply to any type of business, which can use whatever flavor (performance improvement system) it has already chosen.”

    “The Baldrige framework doesn’t need to replace what you have,” he added. “It makes what you have more effective.”

    In the case of Adventist Health Castle (AHC)—the 2017 Baldrige Award recipient in Hawaii where Bovey serves as quality improvement coordinator—he summed up the benefits this way: “The Baldrige framework has helped us look at our organization from the 30,000-foot view to enhance alignment and integration.”

    “The [Baldrige] Criteria have helped us identify our blind spots and become more systematic in our methodology through the use of ADLI. When we became more systematic about our real work, we achieved the results that we needed.”

    How AHC Makes Baldrige “How We Work”
    With a focus on how his health care system uses the Baldrige framework to continue to support excellent performance today, Bovey looks forward to leading a session at the Baldrige Program’s upcoming Quest for Excellence® Conference. “Our time is too valuable to be doing extra work, so we have made a conscious effort to make Baldrige ‘how we work,’” said Bovey recently. “During [our Quest] session, we will describe methods we have used to make this goal a reality.”

    Asked for an example of how AHC has benefited from integrating the Baldrige framework, Bovey responded, “By merging category teams with existing teams and committees, we have reduced the number of meetings and increased the effectiveness of our teams.”

    He further described how AHC teams of employees use the Baldrige process evaluation factors of Approach, Deployment, Learning, Integration (ADLI) to think about the performance of their work processes. The teams now do an annual update of responses to Baldrige Criteria questions in the category related to their function in the organization, and they use an ADLI table format to capture information in those four dimensions of process evaluation, Bovey said.

    “Our team members also have received training to become internal Baldrige examiners to evaluate organizational performance both in their category and in one other team’s category. The result of this annual examination is a prioritized list of improvement opportunities for their team in the coming year,” he added.

    Tips to Introduce Your Organization to the Baldrige Framework
    Based on AHC’s experience, Bovey shared the following tips for those in other organizations who are interested in introducing or sustaining their use of the Baldrige framework:

    1. Align Baldrige categories with the real work of organizational teams/committees.
    2. Engage team leaders and team members in an annual Baldrige application update [updating responses to Baldrige Criteria questions], but with a focus on updating bullet points in an ADLI table rather than “wordsmithing” paragraphs in a document.
    3. Train team members to be examiners and apply that training to evaluate their own work and the work of another (category) team.
    4. Use this evaluation to identify strengths and prioritize opportunities for improvement for the coming year.
    5. Develop 90-day action plans in each team.
    6. Schedule quarterly meetings for team leaders to provide updates to their 90-day action plans and to identify opportunities for integration.

    Finally, Bovey shared with me what he’d say about the Baldrige framework if he wanted to give a quick summary of the benefits to a group of senior leaders who knew little or nothing about it:

    “If you are tired of putting out fires—and of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing—then you may want to consider using the Baldrige framework. It’s not so much about an award as it is about helping you get the results that you need.”

  5. It Is 2020. Is Your CEO Thinking about Perpetual Reinvention?

    January 23, 2020 by BPIR.com Limited

    Article originally posted on Blogrige by Harry Hertz

    It has been a little more than two years since I last summarized the topics that are keeping CEOs up at night, either thinking about challenges their organization faces or opportunities and innovations that should be explored. I ended that 2017 Insights column by stating that I looked forward to taking another look a few years down the road to see how those challenges and opportunities have changed. Well, we are now down the road!

    As in the past, the findings presented below are generally applicable across industry sectors (including government and other nonprofits) and to organizations of all sizes. Also, as in the past, I have combined what I have heard from senior executives, what I have read in blogs and publications of all types, and what I have learned from 11 specific studies. I have identified six areas that are important to CEOs as we enter the next decade. Many of these areas are logical outgrowths of the topics highlighted in the 2017 study, but with new twists and a greater sense of urgency. Agility is the key word and, as the title of this column suggests, CEOs sense a forward-looking need for perpetual reinvention.

    I will briefly describe the 11 articles included in the current study, share the six areas for consideration in 2020 and briefly relate them to how the 2019-2020 Baldrige Excellence Framework is addressing these topics, comment on the similarities and changes in considerations from 2017 to 2020, and provide some food for thought as the Baldrige framework is revised in future years.

    The 11 Articles
    The first article, entitled “What’s Keeping CEO’s Up at Night?” was written by Ben Morton, an opinion columnist for CEOWORLD magazine (CEOWORLD). The second article, entitled “CEO’s Curbed Confidence Spells Caution,” (PDF) is the product of PwC’s 22nd annual global CEO survey (PwC). It involved 1,378 CEO interviews in 91 territories. The third article results from the Gartner 2019 CEO survey (Gartner). This study involved 473 business leaders from 32 countries.

    The fourth article was produced by the Conference Board (CB). The CB’s C-Suite Challenge 2019 is based on a survey of over 800 CEOs and over 600 other C-Suite executives, primarily from the United States, Asia, and Europe. The fifth article, “15 Big Challenges You’ll Face as a Modern CEO (and How to Solve Them),” results from the challenges shared by 15 members of Forbes Coaches Councils based on struggles their executive clients are facing (Forbes). The sixth article, “3 Priorities for CEOs in 2019,” was a product of the World Economic Forum annual meeting (WEF).

    The seventh article, entitled “Global Trends: Navigating a World of Disruption,” (PDF) results from McKinsey Global Institute research and served as a briefing note for the WEF (MGI). The eighth article, “How are CEOs Adapting to the Innovation Challenges of 2020?” comes from EUROPEANCEO magazine (EUROPE). The ninth article, “Incumbents Strike Back,” (PDF) was produced by IBM. It shares the perspectives of 12,854 respondents across six C-suite roles from 112 countries and represents the 19th C-suite study in the series (IBM). The tenth article, entitled “Citizenship and Social Impact: Society holds the Mirror,” results from the Deloitte 2018 Global Human Capital Trends (Deloitte). The 11th and final article comes from the November 2019 McKinsey Quarterly (McKinsey) and is entitled “Answering Society’s Call: A New Leadership Imperative.

    The Six Areas for 2020
    To arrive at the six areas for 2020, I have analyzed and synthesized information across the various articles and studies. I have listed the resulting six areas in order of decreasing mention across the 11 articles, giving some additional weight to the articles that result from studies of many C-suite executives. The first two areas are tied in importance and reflect a focus on the external environment and internal organizational environment, respectively. Areas three and four are also tied. All the areas are considerations for strategic-planning discussions.

    1. Emerging Technologies and the Digital Economy: The importance of this trend is probably best summarized in CEOWORLD. After stating that no single business or sector is safe from disruption by emerging technologies and the digital economy, (even) in the service sector, the article quotes hoteliers and taxi companies who said in effect, “Technology won’t affect us; people will always need a hotel and a taxi.” And then Airbnb and Uber entered the marketplace. Technology, including big data, data analytics, and artificial intelligence (AI), is crossing industries to create new and unique product offerings. Two examples that combine manufacturing and service are a Nike shoe that fastens itself through a mobile app and then collects data via sensors to send back to the company, and a capability developed by General Motors and Volvo to have Amazon deliver packages to car trunks using a one-time digital code to unlock the trunk wirelessly.

    According to Gartner, 82 percent of CEOs state that they have initiatives to make the organization more digital, including dealing with cybersecurity concerns. According to the WEF, over 70 percent of CEOs interviewed believe they need to lead a radical digitally led transformation of their business model and that understanding of the cloud, the impact of AI on the workforce, and cybersecurity are becoming table stakes for them. CEOs need to find the right balance between data and intuition, which means they need to get deeper into the way they develop data-driven insights for their business, according to the WEF.

    In more than two-thirds of the use cases studied by MGI, AI can improve performance more than other analytics techniques. MGI promotes the belief that AI adoption can boost global GDP by as much as $13 trillion in the next ten years. IBM writes about the Internet of Things (IoT) bridging the digital and physical worlds. IBM indicates that the IoT will result in value shifting to organizations that best orchestrate the combined digital-physical worlds. And just recently, the Harvard Business Review announced a survey on how executives are using technology and shared data to unite their Human Resources and Finance teams to increase efficiency.

    The Baldrige framework has organizational learning and agility and managing for innovation as two of its core values. The 2019 Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence (part of the framework) ask how your strategic planning process addresses the potential need for transformational change and organizational agility. The notes refer to the need to integrate data from all sources to generate strategically relevant information, including technological innovations that could affect your products and services.

    1. The Right People for the Organization: While this topic did not generally rank at the very top of CEOs’ list of concerns (unlike technology and the digital economy), it was consistently present on their list of concerns. Several different organizational needs related to “the right people” were mentioned repeatedly by C-suite executives: the need for new skills and lifelong learning because of automation, AI, and the digital economy; the need for more cross-functional teamwork; the growing need for management development in a more empowered workforce environment and for leadership development of the next generation of leaders; the need to “liberate” the workforce through empowerment and encouragement to experiment; and the need to retain talented people in a more mobile workforce. According to Forbes, leaders need to promote a simple statement: “people first.”

    In the CB study, CEOs globally ranked attracting and retaining top talent as their number-one internal concern. Developing the next generation of leaders was their third-highest concern. CEOs expressed a need for more formal leadership development programs that provide cross-functional rotational opportunities. According to MGI, about 15 percent of the global workforce (approximately 400 million people) could be displaced by automation by 2030. At the same time, 550 to 800 million new jobs could be created that demand increasing digital skills. EUROPEANCEO executives predicted that in 2020, the third and fourth most commonly added C-suite job roles will be focused on digital and cloud, respectively. (The first most commonly added role is focused on customer experience, my sixth area; the second on big data, my fifth area.)

    In the IBM study, people skills rose sharply to third place among the external forces that will impact the organization, recognizing the need for having the right people in the organization. Sixty-one percent of C-suite executives rated this as an important external factor. They also believe they will be sharing people skills with other organizations in their value chain. Asked to rank the capabilities most important for innovation, CEOs in the study ranked two characteristics above all others: a willingness to experiment and the support of empowered people in the organization

    A Baldrige framework core value is valuing people, and this core value is thoroughly embodied in the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence. The Baldrige Criteria place a specific focus on building an effective and supportive workforce environment, including preparing your workforce for changing work systems. This focus is accompanied by questions related to workforce and leader development. This development incudes supporting the organization’s intelligent risk taking. Additional questions relate to how the organization’s workforce engagement processes foster retention. In the Leadership category of the Baldrige Criteria, leaders are asked how they create an environment for success, including the development of future leaders and cultivating individual learning and intelligent risk taking.

    1. Evolving and Uncertain Global Markets: According to PwC, 2018 saw a record jump in global optimism about economic growth. By contrast, 2019 has seen a record jump in pessimism, with nearly 30 percent of CEOs projecting a decline in global economic growth. CEOs are showing growing concern over trade disputes and an unpredictable geopolitical landscape, counteracting a 40-year trend of increasing globalization. According to CEOWORLD, this is happening at the same time when CEOs are challenged by currency volatility, extended and uncertain supply chains, local competition, and a concern about changing policies and legislation that will have to deal with human, ethical, and moral implications of new technology. The CB study indicates that globally, CEOs rank a recession as their number-one external concern and threats to global trade as their second-highest external concern. The WEF concluded that CEOs need to hone their geopolitical skills and engage more with politicians and civil society leaders.

    These uncertainties are enhanced by MGI data that indicate that two-thirds of global GDP growth and more than half of new consumption over the past 15 years stems from emerging economies. Furthermore, more than 120 companies from these economies have joined the Fortune Global 500 list since 2000. MGI states that, by several measures, these companies are more innovative, nimble, and competitive than their Western rivals. IBM concludes that companies will have to “dance with disruption,” having the fortitude for perpetual reinvention even when the status quo is working well.

    Two of the Baldrige framework core values are visionary leadership and organizational learning and agility. Visionary leaders need to manage risk and deal with external uncertainties. The organizational learning and agility core value states, “Success in today’s ever-changing globally competitive environment demands continual organizational learning and agility.” In the Strategy Development component of the Baldrige Criteria (item 2.1) there are specific questions relating to how your strategic planning considers potential changes in your regulatory and external environment and how you prepare for potential blind spots. In Strategy Implementation (item 2.2), organizations are asked how you recognize and respond to needed shifts in your action plans with rapid execution.

    1. Responding to Society’s Call: According to Deloitte (and others), corporate citizenship has become a CEO-level business strategy—defining the organization’s very identity. This strategy involves the organization’s ability to do social good, both externally (among customers, communities, and society) and internally (among employees and other key internal stakeholders). According to a 2017 Deloitte study, millennials, who constitute over half of the workforce in many countries, are increasingly sensitive to how their organizations address issues such as income inequality, hunger, and the environment. Eighty-eight percent believe that employers should play a vital role in alleviating these concerns. Furthermore, 55 percent of consumers are willing to pay more for products coming from companies’ committed to positive social impact. MGI states that gender parity, a scenario where women and men participate in the economy in equal parts, will add as much as 26 percent to global GDP. A longitudinal study of purpose-focused companies found that they outperformed their S&P 500 peers by a factor of eight. Nevertheless, Deloitte found that while 77 percent of their global respondents cited citizenship as important, only 18 percent said it was a top priority in their organization’s strategy.

    According to McKinsey, nine of every ten Generation Z consumers believe that companies have a responsibility to address environmental and social issues. MGI states that governments and business leaders will have to jointly address societal concerns on misuse of AI, automation, and data privacy.

    One of the Baldrige framework core values is societal contributions. Societal contributions include leading and supporting the environmental, social, and economic systems in your organization’s sphere of influence. Role-model organizations influence other private and public organizations to partner for these purposes. The Baldrige Criteria include leadership questions related to societal contributions. The questions encompass how your organization considers societal well-being and benefits as part of its strategy and daily operations and how you strengthen and support your key communities.

    1. Big Data and Business Platforms: The challenge already faced by CEOs—and growing in importance—is translating vast amounts of data to use for better decision making. According to the WEF, over 70 percent of the CEOs contacted believe they need to lead a digital transformation of their business model. EUROPE cites that in 2020 the second-most important new role in the C-suite will be focused on big data (the first will be focused on customer experience, the sixth area, which is described below). This also impacts directly the workforce skills that will be needed (an overlap with the second area, on the right people).

    Big data will be instrumental in the growth of platform businesses. A platform business facilitates interactions across many participants. Existing large-scale platform businesses include eBay, Amazon, Facebook, and CVS Health. According to IBM, platform operators double down on data and turn large volumes of data into innovation and the continuous recalibration of their strategy and operations. They excel at creating personalized customer experiences (the sixth area). The IBM study found that 46 percent of organizations are investing in or considering the new platform business model. Organizations enter ecosystems, establish strong collaborative relationships, and emerge as orchestrators on a digital platform.

    The availability of large amounts of data challenges our ability to practice the Baldrige framework core value of management by fact; it is increasingly difficult to analyze the data available and extract larger meaning for the benefit of organizational decision making. This was a key challenge CEOs faced in my 2017 study, and it is even “bigger” today. The Baldrige Criteria have a component (item 4.2) on information and knowledge management. It asks how your organization blends and correlates data from different sources to build knowledge and how this knowledge is used in your innovation and strategic planning processes.

    1. Customer Experience: The CB asked CEOs how they plan on succeeding in 2025. CEOs expressed confidence about their organizations being able to thrive but stated that a challenge is that the customer experience is starting to be more important than the actual product. This will require rethinking their offerings. The IBM study found that 86 percent of organizations say they are at least somewhat effective at creating individual customer experiences, and 53 percent say they are quite effective. Nevertheless, 68 percent of C-suite executives said they will be changing their value proposition to emphasize customer experience over products.

    According to EUROPE, the most commonly added role to the C-suite in 2020 will be focused on customer experience. IBM found that over one-quarter of their forefront organizations are using AI and cognitive solutions to improve their customers’ experiences. They are developing customer co-creation communities to better understand human motivations and gain customer empathy. Community members become influencers and brand advocates that extend trust outside the community more effectively than advertising can.

    Organizations are trying to stand out from their competitors through new and novel offerings (possibly through ecosystems; see big data and business systems above). Competition is coming from different industries that suddenly invade “your” market space. As stated in the IBM study, “The risk for incumbents is that their business models will be turned into Swiss cheese.” Customer desires and market opportunities are breaking down old business siloes.

    Two of the Baldrige framework core values are customer-focused excellence and managing for innovation. Customer-focused excellence is about considering all product and service features and characteristics and all modes of customer access that contribute to value for your customers. Managing for innovation includes collaboration among people who did not historically work together. This core value may need broadening in the future to include customer co-creation. Since customer focus is so central to the Baldrige framework, the area of customer and market orientation pervades the Baldrige Criteria questions, from category 3 on customers, to work systems, innovation, and knowledge management, all intended to enhance customer engagement and loyalty.

    CEO Issues of 2020 and 2017
    Comparing the CEO issues in 2020 and 2017 reveals some subtle differences, a few significant changes, and a great deal of overlap or ongoing concern.

    The seven areas identified in 2017 were

    1. uncertainty and resilience
    2. finding the right employees
    3. short-term and long-term value creation
    4. partnerships and interdependency
    5. big data
    6. customer and market orientation, and
    7. cybersecurity.

    The 2017 area that has disappeared is short-term and long-term value creation. The concern about short-term value creation has been superseded by a concern for evolving and uncertain global markets (short-term and long-term). The long-term value creation focus is reflected within the scope of each of this year’s areas. This year’s concern about evolving and uncertain global markets is a sharpening of the theme of uncertainty and resilience expressed by CEOs in 2017. Finding the right employees has evolved into the larger topic of the right people for the organization. Partnerships and interdependency has been focused in the areas of business platforms (and ecosystems) and customer co-creation of the future. Big data remains a major focus for CEOs. Customer and market orientation has been focused on the customer experience and the service relationship that will drive customer decision making. Cybersecurity is a major concern within the overall digital economy.

    New this year is the area of responding to society’s call. While social responsibility was covered in my 2015 study, it did not have the strategic focus that is present now. Concepts that are in this year’s study for the first time include the digital economy, AI, business platforms, and customer co-creation.

    Implications for Future Baldrige Framework Revisions
    While it is still too early to anticipate the next set of revisions to the Baldrige Excellence Framework, the results of this study yield some topics to keep top of mind as we anticipate the near- and longer-term contributors to performance excellence. The clearest contributors to the short-term evolution of the Baldrige framework are probably customer and societal innovations. There are opportunities to consider the enhanced role of the customer experience as we think about customer engagement, an experience that goes to strategic considerations when addressing customer co-creation of offerings. Similarly, in answering society’s call, there will be Baldrige framework opportunities to look strategically at offerings that improve the societal and community well-being and to look at broadening the innovation focus to address products, processes, organizational effectiveness, and societal well-being.

    Of longer-term strategic significance will be the need and opportunity to address changing work systems. Influencers will be the growing role of AI and its intersection with a digital economy. In addressing the digital economy, organizations will probably find it increasingly important to have a strategy that includes a role in platform businesses. All these areas will require a greater emphasis on re-training and lifelong learning as a core competency for all people in the workforce. While these three areas (AI, the digital economy, and platform business models) are still at the very leading edge (in most business environments), they will have to be watched for rapid advances over the next few years.

    I look forward to observing changes in performance excellence over the next few years. And I look forward to another look at CEO challenges and opportunities a few years down the road, to see what has remained the same and what has changed in our insights on the road to performance excellence!