Essentials of Organizational Excellence: For the second year in a row, I’m invited to the International Business Excellence Awards in Dubai as a judge. This April 29-30, I’ll be Chairperson of Judges for Technology and Smart Technology and Information Security. I’m really looking forward to seeing this year’s standard which is bound to be excellent. As industry leaders, we are all required to continuously raise the bar, to continuously achieve and sustain organizational excellence. In this blog, I would like to discuss the five essential elements of organizational excellence – commonly referred to as the five pillars of organizational excellence. Many books and academic works have been produced examining these management areas, the most prolific being authored by H James Harrington.
Process management means enabling processes to share and exchange information, preserving the resources of each individual process from other ones and enabling the best possible synchronization among all processes. Basically, this increases productivity!
Project management is initiating, planning, executing, and overseeing of all the stages of work and the team doing the work to achieve specific goals or deliver an individual project in a specific time. The main challenge is to attain all the objectives within any constraints, whether cost, manpower, or time.
A great high-profile example of excellent project management is how America Airlines solved its technology issues when it merged with US Airways. This created an overlap of systems, and the company acknowledged that a spreadsheet would be unable to manage complex projects. So, they began to use portfolio management and capacity planning and ended up with access to better data and capitalized an additional 10% of their IT input.
Change management is a collective term for all approaches to prepare, support, and assist customers, employees, teams, and organizations in making major organizational changes. Recently, change management has become a pivotal factor in business success with faster-moving markets and economic trends.
The oil company Shell handled change management particularly well. In 2004 its share price was diminished because of an oil reserve crisis and its leader believed the only way to survive was a radical transformation of structure and processes. This was heavily resisted initially, but Shell committed itself to gain the backing of all involved. They convinced employees that this was the only way to drive transformational growth – and they succeeded.
Knowledge management refers to the creating, sharing, and using an organization’s data and information and how best to achieve goals by making the best use of this info. If you want to see mastery in this, look no further than Google – it has ramped up knowledge creation through amazing innovations.
Resource management means developing and protecting an organization’s resources. In order to do this effectively, it should cover all types of resources from financial to inventory, human resources to IT. The FedEx Corporation is a great example. Its philosophy “People-Service-Profit” indicated that it believes in people and service as a priority – and as a consequence, makes money. It’s all about service to customers, its people, and through them both, the wider community. Internally, it offers employees surveys and feedback programs to ensure they are happy and thriving. And this has paid off!
Balancing all five pillars can be a challenge for companies, but it’s vital for overall organizational excellence.