Is your company great? When it comes to asking this about our companies and organizations we work for, being great is something that everyone strives for. These two words are an excellent motivator for businesses, but it must be remembered that greatness is seen in the eyes of the beholder.
Organizations must always revisit their business strategy, models, and customer needs in order to always improve to meet them. Some win, some do not.
Is it time to make your organization great again? Is your organization capable of handling disruptive technologies? An unknown competitor? A known competitor that just surpassed your performance?
In my 30 years of global consulting I am continually surprised how many organizations think they are still great — in the eyes of their customers — yet they are not. How do I know? It is in the data they have in front of them. Many of the leaders do not see it or do much about it. This is a clear signal it’s time to be “Great Again.”
The EFQM Excellence Model which is similar to the US Baldrige Award for Excellence has a requirement that states, “an excellence organization must demonstrate that it continues to renew its focus on the customer and performance excellence annually.” This simple requirement is one that all organizations should heed. Why? No organization should ever embark on a journey of transformational change every two or three years. Transformational change is hard, expensive, and dramatic. For many organizations employees view a leader’s statement that a transformational change is needed as a program of “catching up” and not often seen as a leading event.
If your leaders are interested in transformational change they need to know it can be accomplished less dramatically and expensively. Your organization can become great again and stay that way through understanding the universal principles that will refocus your performance improvement personnel on those things that matter to the customer. Those things usually are the quality of your product, services, and and the way your organization meets customers’ needs. Too often these highly qualified resources are not working on things that matter.
To make your organization great again and keep it great continually renew your commitment to excellence and assure all your programs and talent are aligned to that purpose.
Author: Dr. Joseph A DeFeo
Dr. Joseph A. DeFeo, Chairman and CEO of Juran, is recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on transformational change and breakthrough quality management.
For 28 years, Dr. DeFeo has worked as a trusted adviser helping business leaders increase sales, reduce costs and improve its customer experience through the deployment of performance excellence programs. These include Business Process Quality Management, Lean, Six Sigma, Strategy Deployment and Change Management. His recent publication, Juran’s Quality Essentials for Leaders, provides a concise message delivered for leaders to teach them how to embrace quality, not fight it, to be a globally competitive enterprise. Dr. DeFeo has co-authored three other popular texts.
DeFeo’s belief that a relentless customer focus and integrity drives business results was recently noted by Steve Denning of Forbes.com. A frequent motivational guest speaker at international conferences, Dr. DeFeo has presented in over 30 countries.