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  • 标题:Improving performance through the Baldrige Organizational Profile: an application in business education.
  • 作者:Natarajan, Ramachandran ; Barger, Bonita
  • 期刊名称:Academy of Educational Leadership Journal
  • 印刷版ISSN:1095-6328
  • 出版年度:2008
  • 期号:January
  • 语种:English
  • 出版社:The DreamCatchers Group, LLC
  • 摘要:In recent years, business education has come under attack. CEOs, recent graduates, and business school faculty themselves are complaining that the Academy is not preparing students to deal with the complex, unquantifiable aspects of leading and managing organizations. The relevance of the business curriculum is being questioned. At the same time, in the last couple of decades, a number for formal systems and frameworks for improving organizational performance have been developed and deployed. These include the ISO series of standards for quality and environmental standards, principles of lean production, Six Sigma and the criteria framework of the quality awards. Of these, the use of quality award frameworks is of particular interest because it is motivated by the organization's desire to improve performance on a voluntary basis, unlike other systems which are often mandated by customers. In this paper, we discuss the use of a specific aspect (the Organizational Profile) of a quality award, i.e., the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award of the U.S.A. in a specific context, i.e., in business education. The paper highlights an innovative instructional approach in which business students develop organizational diagnostic and consulting skills through the application of the Baldrige Organizational Profile (OP) as a performance improvement tool. It demonstrates how students translate the OP and apply it to a real life organization. It describes the process and the outcomes in terms of learning and benefits for both the students and their client organizations.
  • 关键词:Academic achievement;Business education

Improving performance through the Baldrige Organizational Profile: an application in business education.


Natarajan, Ramachandran ; Barger, Bonita


ABSTRACT

In recent years, business education has come under attack. CEOs, recent graduates, and business school faculty themselves are complaining that the Academy is not preparing students to deal with the complex, unquantifiable aspects of leading and managing organizations. The relevance of the business curriculum is being questioned. At the same time, in the last couple of decades, a number for formal systems and frameworks for improving organizational performance have been developed and deployed. These include the ISO series of standards for quality and environmental standards, principles of lean production, Six Sigma and the criteria framework of the quality awards. Of these, the use of quality award frameworks is of particular interest because it is motivated by the organization's desire to improve performance on a voluntary basis, unlike other systems which are often mandated by customers. In this paper, we discuss the use of a specific aspect (the Organizational Profile) of a quality award, i.e., the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award of the U.S.A. in a specific context, i.e., in business education. The paper highlights an innovative instructional approach in which business students develop organizational diagnostic and consulting skills through the application of the Baldrige Organizational Profile (OP) as a performance improvement tool. It demonstrates how students translate the OP and apply it to a real life organization. It describes the process and the outcomes in terms of learning and benefits for both the students and their client organizations.

Key words: Performance Improvement; Baldrige Award; Baldrige Organizational Profile; Critique of Business Education; Relevance of Business Curriculum; Organizational Learning; Interventions for Performance Improvements

INTRODUCTION

In the last couple of decades, a number of formal systems and frameworks for improving organizational performance have been developed and deployed. These include the ISO series of standards for quality and environmental standards, principles of lean production, Six Sigma and the criteria framework of the quality awards (Evans & Lindsay, 2005). Of these, the use of quality award frameworks is of particular interest because it is motivated by the organization's desire to improve performance on a voluntary basis, unlike other systems which are often mandated by customers. In this paper, we discuss the use of a specific aspect (the Organizational Profile) of a quality award, i.e., the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award of the U.S.A. in a specific context, i.e., in business education.

The paper is organized by sections. The first section addresses the contemporary issues in business education and curriculum and then presents the context for the application of the Organizational Profile. The following section provides a historical perspective on the Baldrige Award and the Organizational Profile. Then, the application of the Profile is illustrated and elaborated. The last section highlights the benefits, transferability issues, and the conclusion.

CURRENT ISSUES IN BUSINESS EDUCATION

In recent years, business education and curriculum has come under attack in many countries (Bennis & O'Toole, 2005; Ramachander, 2005; Economist 2004A; Business Week, 2005). These criticisms have originated not only from the employers and students but also from the deans and business faculty themselves (Bennis & O'Toole, 2005). One of the main charges--in fact not all that recent--leveled against the business education is that it is not preparing the graduates to deal with complex, unquantifiable aspects of leading and managing organizations. One of the ways business schools traditionally have addressed this problem is by including case studies in the coursework. This case study approach, popularized by the Harvard Business School, does not satisfy critics like Professor Mintzberg, a leading and vocal critic of the business programs. According to him, "You don't get trained in the capacity for managing in an MBA program. You think you do, but ... a lot of people end up grabbing for techniques. Where it goes wrong is in the case-study method: give me 20 pages and an evening to think about it and I'll give you the decision tomorrow morning. It trains people to provide the most superficial response to problems ... getting the data in a nice, neat, packaged form and then making decisions on that basis. It encourages managers to be disconnected from the people they are managing" (Ramachander, 2005). In his book, Managers Not MBAs, he says MBA programs often ignore that management is a craft which requires more than just the ability to analyze data (Mintzberg, 2004). According to Stanford Graduate School of Business faculty member Jeffrey Pfeffer, MBA education does not equip graduates to respond effectively to the rapid changes taking place in the global economy (Pfeffer and Fong, 2002).

In a recent article that has generated a lot of discussion, business school academics, Bennis and O'Toole (Bennis & O'Toole, 2005) argue that the model used for business education is inappropriate and is not rooted in the requirements of the profession. It mimics the hard disciplines of natural and physical sciences and emphasizes quantitative and analytical skills. The faculty have very little experience in actual business practice. The research knowledge they generate using the methodology of hard sciences is often divorced from reality and irrelevant to what goes on in business. They recommend switching to the professional model in medicine and law, where the teachers also practice what they teach.

But such sweeping changes are unlikely to take place any time soon. The American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International, the accrediting agency for U.S. business schools and professional organization for management education, has taken note of the increasing chorus of critics and the gloomy forecasts about the future of the industry's main product, the MBA degree. But John Fernandes, president and CEO of AACSB International, remains optimistic that the glory days of MBA are still ahead (AACSB International, 2005). This optimism is based on the growth in demand for business education. Business degrees rose from 14% of all undergraduate degrees in 1971 to 21% in 2001, and MBAs from 11% to 25% of all master's degrees (Friga, Bettis, & Sullivan, 2003). And globally, business education is expanding rapidly in places where it did not exist just 25 years ago. For instance, China now has at least 21 MBA programs run with American partners, and another 40 or so are run by Chinese universities alone. In Russia and central and eastern Europe, more than 1,000 new business schools sprang up during the 1990s (Economist, 2004a). The composition of this demand is also changing. Because of the advent of online programs offered by many business schools, the enrollment in part-time MBA programs is increasing. For instance, University of Phoenix, which pioneered the online degrees in the U.S., enrolls about 7,000 part-time MBA students compared to about 4,000 full-time ones (Economist, 2004a). Mr. Fernandes wants MBA program providers to keep their programs current. According to him, "The MBA still is the most popular, most flexible, and most successful degree in the world. Our job is to keep it that way. After all, we are providing our graduates with the 'liberal arts of life,' and a guarantee of the tools needed for life-long success," (AACSB International, 2005). All this does sounds more like a call for fine-tuning than for making sweeping changes.

Other solutions stop short of the fundamental changes called for by Bennis and O'Toole. One such solution it is to incorporate more real world experience into the business curriculum (Ramachander, 2005). The objective is to create more opportunities for students to link theories and concepts to the work experience. The application of Baldrige Organization Profile described in this paper belongs to this genre of solutions for reforming business curriculum.

It serves another purpose as well. It can meet the needs of growing demand for business consultants. The profession of business consulting seems to be recession-proof, complementing the tumultuous and rapidly changing technology environments in business. It has grown exponentially over the years. "In 2000, over 140,000 consultants sold over $70 billion of advice"(Careers-in-Business, 2005). In the U.S., top consulting firms such as Bain, McKinsey, and Mercer Management Consulting often target top MBA schools such as Harvard, Wharton, Stanford, and Sloan. "Ten percent of the 1993 Harvard graduating class went to work for McKinsey" (Careers-in-Business, 2005). While large firms continue to contract consultants for projects such as sales force automation and foreign business development, smaller entrepreneurial firms seek their services in value management, information technology implementation, health care, education, market research, and project management.

Seventy-three AACSB International, The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business colleges offering MBA programs ranging from 30-33 hours were benchmarked to determine if courses were offered in consulting/research and internships. Thirteen programs offered both consulting/research and internships. Thus, while the market demand continues to grow for consulting/research, only 17% of these programs addressed this demand by offering courses.

THE BALDRIGE AWARD AND ORGANIZATIONAL PROFILE

The Baldrige Award

In the 1980s, there was great concern about the loss of competitiveness of U.S. industries in the global market place. The noteworthy successes of the Japanese companies were becoming evident. While the issue had many dimensions, one aspect in particular--quality--received a lot of attention. The gap in quality of products made by U.S. companies in comparison to the Japanese was viewed with alarm. There was growing recognition that concerted action was needed to close the gap. A National Quality Award was suggested as one of the mechanisms for this purpose. The legislation for the National Quality Award passed in August 1987, as the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA), named after the Secretary of Commerce who had been a strong supporter of the award but had recently died in tragic horse riding accident.

"A national quality award program of this kind in the United States would serve, among others, the purpose of helping to improve quality and productivity by:

(a) helping to stimulate American companies to improve quality and productivity for the pride of recognition while obtaining a competitive edge through increased profits;

(b) recognizing the achievements of those companies that improve the quality of their goods and services and providing an example to others;

(c) establishing guidelines and criteria that can be used by business, industrial, governmental, and other organizations in evaluating their own quality improvement efforts; and

(d) providing specific guidance for other American organizations that wish to learn how to manage for high quality by making available detailed information on how winning organizations were able to change their cultures and achieve eminence" (National Institute of Standards, 2005).

The award criteria are the basis for organizational self-assessments, for making awards, and for giving feedback to applicants. Over the years, the Baldrige criteria have evolved from its initial emphasis on the quality dimension of organizational performance to becoming a model for overall performance excellence (Evans & Lindsay, 2005). The Baldrige Award has played a significant role in helping U.S. organizations improve their performance and competitiveness. (Junkins 1994; Blodgett, 1999; DeBaylo, 1999; Shergold & Reed, 1996). By spawning a number of state quality awards in over 40 states of the U.S., most of which are based on the Baldrige Criteria, MBNQA has been able to extend the deployment of the criteria to a much wider base of organizations (Bobrowski & Bantham, 1994). It has served as a benchmark for many other national quality awards. Many textbooks have used the award criteria and the cases based on the award winning organizations as teaching tools (Evans & Lindsay, 2005). Business students learn through these texts and case studies how these role model organizations have benefited from the application of the Baldrige criteria. However, typically, they do not learn how to apply the Baldrige framework to real organizational contexts for performance improvements. This paper describes an innovative approach in which students learn by applying a particular element of the Baldrige criteria, i.e., the Organizational Profile (OP), to a real life organization. It describes the process and the outcomes in terms of learning and benefits for both the students and their client organizations.

Baldrige Organizational Profile: Purpose and Function

The applicants for the Baldrige award have to provide a description of their organization and what is important to that organization in terms of key factors such as its customers, products and/or services, competition, employees, supplier and partnering relationships, its regulatory and legal environment, and organizational directions. Until 2000, this information was to be organized under the following subheadings: Basic description of the organization; Customer/student/patient and stakeholder requirements; Relationship to other organizations; Competitive situation; and Organizational directions. In the year 2001, the required information to be provided by the applicant was made more specific and explicit by a series of questions that the applicant has to respond to. These questions constitute the Organizational Profile (OP). The term Profile here refers to more than just the facts about the organization, such as the number of employees. The Organizational Profile is a snapshot of the organization, the key influences on how it operates, and the key challenges it faces. The first section, Organizational Description, addresses the organization's business environment and its key relationships with customers, suppliers, and other partners. The second section, Organizational Challenges, calls for a description of the organization's competitive environment, the key strategic challenges, and the system for performance improvement. The questions that apply to the performance excellence criteria for the business sector are given in Appendix 1A. The questions for the education and health care sector are similar but tailored to those sectors (National Institute of Standards, 2005). A simpler version of the Organizational Profile questionnaire (for the business, education, and the healthcare sectors) called E-Baldrige Organizational Profile is available at the Baldrige website. An organization can complete it online and receive a comparison with other organizations that have also completed it. The version for the business sector is given in Appendix 1B.

The importance of the Organizational Profile to the Baldrige award process lies in the following:

* It is the most appropriate starting point for self-assessment and for writing an application;

* It helps in identifying potential gaps in key information and focusing on key performance requirements and business results;

* It is used by the Examiners and Judges in application review, including the site visit, to understand the organization and what the organization considers important; and

* It also may be used by itself for an initial self-assessment. If the organization identifies topics for which conflicting, little, or no information is available, it is possible that the Organizational Profile can serve as the complete assessment, and the organizations can use these topics for action planning (National Institute of Standards, 2005).

The last point is the most relevant as far as its use in business education is concerned. It is used as a tool for organizational diagnosis, gap identification, and action planning.

APPLICATION OF THE BALDRIGE ORGANIZATIONAL PROFILE

The purpose of this section is to describe the integration of business/market research, consulting, self-managed work teams, and the application of the Baldrige Organizational Profile (see Appendices 1A & 1B) in an MBA level course for the purpose of developing organizational diagnostic and consulting skills. Peter Block (2000) states, "One of the things that has always haunted me is truly knowing whether we are making a difference (adding value by consulting)" (Block, 2000, p. xix). The MBA curriculum at XXX University attempts to make a difference by preparing students to be business leaders. In doing so, the program required students to take an exit class called Business Research. The main objective of the course was for students to do applied and actionable research in the role of consultants for local businesses. The secondary objective was to contribute to regional business development. The course was designed to develop business research, reporting, and entrepreneurial consulting skills through the integration of learning from prior MBA courses and application to a "live" and "real time" entrepreneurial client system.

Profile Content and Structure

Business research begins with the gathering of information, which serves as the basis for intellectual capital and managerial decisions. An important foundation for this capital and these decisions is information and data turned into relevant and applied knowledge. The purpose of business and market research is to provide this valid, reliable, and accurate information to serve as a basis for entry, diagnosis, and managerial decisions in the consulting relationship.

As part of their role in a simulated consulting organization, MBA students identify their core competencies (i.e. web page creation, inventory control, accounting, marketing, etc.). They become subject matter experts in a chosen area (i.e., entry and contracts, project management, diagnosis, and data collection, dealing with resistance, and report writing) (Block, 2000). They scout, identify, and contract with a local firm that needs their services. In the role of external consultants, students have some influence with the firm's managers but no direct power to make changes or implement programs.

As members of a simulated consulting firm, students: choose a project management team; locate an entrepreneurial organization that has a problem; create a memo of understanding outlining scope of work, terms of service), confidential information, etc. (see Appendix 2); analyze the organization using the Baldrige Organizational Profile (see Appendix 1A); create a project management plan; generate $5,000 of simulated revenue for the consulting organization; benchmark (Camp, 1989) 3-4 sources; do the research and develop recommendations; present their findings to the class and the client; and post the project on a portfolio website as evidence of their work to support on-going employment searches.

As external consultants, the MBA students develop a strong vested interest in the client organization's success and a pride in their work. As part of the simulated consulting culture, their reputation and future success depend on "helping the client" solve the problem. They create simulated budgets of "what their work is worth" in the geographic marketplace. Each student is required to generate $4,500-$5,000 worth of simulated project revenue for the class consulting firm. The organizations are not charged a fee, but over $700,000 of "free service" has been generated by these student consulting contracts. Student teams are self-managed with the authority to terminate dysfunctional team members. A three-phase disciplinary action policy allows a terminated team member "due process" to appeal such a termination (see Appendix 3). The worth of the final deliverables is determined by a 360-degree performance appraisal system comprised of peers, the client, self, and the instructor. The final deliverables become part of a student-created electronic portfolio used to seek employment in their final semester of the MBA program. Frequently, follow-up is provided by the university's Small Business Development Center.

The Baldrige Organizational Profile (OP) has become the instrument of choice for the organizational analysis in the consulting relationship. Prior to the selection of the OP, a theoretical framework highlighting human resource management, organizational structure, and culture was used. While theoretically sound, the model was complex and not "student friendly." Students were given many categories and a list of questions. They randomly chose questions, interviewed managers, and reported the responses in the final paper. The framework was "just another assignment" given by the instructor. It was completed to meet the requirements of the course. It did not add value beyond the class assignment. On the other hand, the OP has to be completed by every Baldrige award applicant and has already proved its worth to the practitioners and companies. It provided the structure and ease of application, and served as an educational tool for both the student and the organization. In addition, a standard language for analysis and report writing was created using the Baldrige Glossary of Key Terms (National Institute of Standards, 2005).

To increase theawareness of the Baldrige Organizational Profile and the issues involved in its application as a diagnostic and learning tool for organizational performance improvement, a CD-ROM was created to guide any instructor who wishes to use OP and serve as a means of introducing the OP into classroom lecture. The CD-ROM has 5 video lecturettes. Each lecturette is designed to provide a unique perspective of the Baldrige Organizational Profile to organizational performance improvement. Perspective #1: The educator's perspective on incorporating the OP and Terminology. Perspective #2: A Baldrige Examiner's historical perspective on Baldrige and the Organizational Profile. Perspective #3: A student consultant interviewing a client--An application of the Organizational Profile. Perspective #4: The student and business client's perspective on using the Profile for performance improvement. Perspective #5: A State Quality Award Program Director's perspective on value added to organizations. The CD-ROM is available from the authors upon request.

The Benefits

Students learn and apply an organizational analysis process. Contextual learning occurs. The logic is one of theory-practice-practice informed by theory (Kolb & Fry, 1975). Multiple models and theories and relationships are presented in the Academy. However, these concepts remain "empty," are "skeletons" or just buzz words for students until they have a context to "hang" them on. As one typical student stated: "By helping the company develop its Organizational Profile, we were also able to help our client recognize some Opportunities for Improvement (OFIs). The OFIs were only identified when we asked him the questions pertaining to the Organizational Profile." What students learn in functional silos in various courses in the MBA program has to be integrated as they address the various areas of OP. They learn systems thinking by developing a holistic perspective on the organization. An important benefit students derive is developing the ability to synthesize the disparate facts about the organization into knowledge for performance improvement. On a related note, according to scholars like Mintzberg, synthesis, not analysis, "is the very essence of management" (Economist, 2004b).

As student consultants, they translate the OP and become teachers to local business managers. Translating the OP category areas into "client-comprehensible questions" to decode the organization in order to make improvement interventions is a major challenge. While business research in action involves the creation of intellectual capital and applied knowledge for managerial decisions--"head work"--it also involves the use of "heart work." Students leave the "classroom" and enter the "boardroom." A "human moment" is created bringing emotional and intellectual attention to real business problems. The students feel the impact of resistance and struggle with change management issues. The clients feel the impact of improved business processes. During the final feedback meeting, one client clearly and emotionally stated this impact: "I've just received a large contract (over several million dollars). I do not have a college education and never thought I needed one. You have showed me why an education is important" (Client, 2001). For the student, the outcome is increased confidence and pride in delivering a series of products that will go beyond receiving a "grade" from the instructor. They themselves have become the teacher--often to successful business leaders.

Transferability

While the application of the OP presented here is at the graduate level, student teams in undergraduate courses have successfully used it to analyze an organization. It has been used in Human Resource Management and International Management classes at the undergraduate level. Undergraduate students used OP to analyze the chosen organization using secondary research sources (annual plans, organization websites, etc.) but students did not act in the role of consultants.

We administered a survey at the end of Fall semester of 2006 assessing student reactions to the application of the OP used in both undergraduate and graduate courses to analyze organizations. The survey is given in Appendix 4. The survey results are given in Tables 1 and 2 respectively for assessments by MBA and undergraduate students. Their thoughts on other aspects of OP are given in Appendix 5. The majority of the both MBA and Undergraduates thought that the Profile was significant in every aspect (giving a rating of 4 or 5 on a 1-5 scale). However, for 12 out of the 16 items in the survey, in terms of overall weighted rating percentages, the undergraduates rated the Profile as not as important, not as relevant to business practice, as less complete, etc. This is not as unexpected as it may seem. MBA students have more experience (whether it be in school or with previous work) than undergraduates and would probably know whether the Profile applies to the business world or not. According to Dr. Curt Reimann (2005), the first director of the Baldrige Award, "OP factors chosen could set the bounds for student's assessment, taking into account their current level of business education."

A side by side comparison with another approach for organizational analysis for the same set of students was not possible because only one approach can be used at a time in the course. But it must be mentioned that the earlier approach was discontinued because it was more theoretical, more complex, and less user friendly than the OP. Clearly OP was more effective and an improvement over the earlier approach.

For undergraduate courses and those not familiar with the Baldrige Organizational Profile, we recommend instructors use the simplified online version of the instrument (See Appendix 1B). Several basic prerequisites are recommended for using the OP: (1) an understanding of business terminology; (2) the ability to establish a relationship; (3) the ability to interview and ask pertinent questions, develop, and lead a "conversation with a purpose" (Bingham & Moore, 1959); and (4) the ability to synthesize/integrate information into a coherent report.

The OP is a publicly available (on the Internet) tool easily accessible worldwide. Therefore, the content and the process underlying this interdisciplinary innovation lends itself to global transferability in national and international business education. Dr Reimann (2005) states "that the OP thinking could be used as a basis for designing a variety of capstone experiences." It is suited for use in courses such as business policy, small business consulting, and entrepreneurship courses, where there is an experiential component, or case study methodology. The authors also envision it being relevant in management and executive development programs, workshops on performance improvements, and organizational analysis for practitioners, venture capitalists, and small businesses.

CONCLUSION

In summary, students' learning is enhanced as a result of transferring theory into practice, becoming subject matter experts to clients, creating visible performance improvement processes that are quantifiable in real monetary terms, and gaining confidence in their skills and ability to replicate the process in other business settings. The financially driven business entrepreneurial consulting simulation with the application of the OP is a win-win situation for all. The student benefits by presenting actual deliverables to prospective employers. "Being turned loose to do the caliber of work most definitely gave me the kind of real-world experience I wanted," stated one student. "The work is not easy. It is work!" One student reflected, "Business research turned out to be more difficult than the syllabus indicated, but the project built confidence that will carry over into our futures." Local businesses benefit by improving their business processes and performance. The university benefits by graduating competent and confident business professionals. The general business community benefits by gaining access to free professional services.

APPENDIX 1A

BALDRIGE ORGANIZATIONAL PROFILE

Please note that the Baldrige Organizational Profile itself is evolving from year to year. The users should decide which year's OP is appropriate for their use. The OP for 2005 Business Criteria is given below. http://www.quality.nist.gov/PDF_files/2005_Business_Criteria.pdf

P.1 Organizational Description

Describe your organization's business environment and your KEY relationships with CUSTOMERS, suppliers, PARTNERS, and STAKEHOLDERS.

Within your response, include answers to the following questions:

a. Organizational Environment

(1) What are your organization's main products and services? What are the delivery mechanisms used to provide your products and services to your CUSTOMERS?

(2) What is your organizational culture? What are your stated PURPOSE, VISION, MISSION, and VALUES?

(3) What is your employee profile? What are your categories and types of employees? What are their educational LEVELS? What are your organization's workforce and job DIVERSITY, organized bargaining units, use of contract employees, and special health and safety requirements?

(4) What are your major technologies, equipment, and facilities?

(5) What is the regulatory environment under which your organization operates? What are the applicable occupational health and safety regulations; accreditation, certification, or registration requirements; relevant industry standards; and environmental, financial, and product regulations?

b. Organizational Relationships

(1) What are your organizational structure and GOVERNANCE system? What are the reporting relationships among your GOVERNANCE board, SENIOR LEADERS, and parent organization, as appropriate?

(2) What are your KEY CUSTOMER and STAKEHOLDER groups and market SEGMENTS, as appropriate? What are their KEY requirements and expectations for your products, services, and operations? What are the differences in these requirements and expectations among CUSTOMER and STAKEHOLDER groups and market SEGMENTS?

(3) What role do suppliers and distributors play in your VALUE CREATION and KEY support PROCESSES? What role, if any, do they play in your organizational INNOVATION

PROCESSES? What are your most important types of suppliers and distributors? What are your most important supply chain requirements?

(4) What are your KEY supplier and CUSTOMER partnering relationships and communication mechanisms?

P.2 Organizational Challenges

Describe your organization's competitive environment, your KEY STRATEGIC CHALLENGES, and your system for PERFORMANCE improvement.

Within your response, include answers to the following questions:

a. Competitive Environment

(1) What is your competitive position? What is your relative size and growth in your industry or markets served? What are the numbers and types of competitors for your organization?

(2) What are the principal factors that determine your success relative to your competitors? What are any KEY changes taking place that affect your competitive situation?

(3) What are your KEY available sources of comparative and competitive data from within your industry?

What are your KEY available sources of comparative data for analogous PROCESSES outside your industry?

What limitations, if any, are there in your ability to obtain these data?

b. Strategic Challenges

What are your KEY business, operational, and human resource STRATEGIC CHALLENGES?

What are your KEY STRATEGIC CHALLENGES associated with organizational SUSTAINABILITY?

c. PERFORMANCE Improvement System

HOW do you maintain an overall organizational focus on PERFORMANCE improvement, including organizational LEARNING?

HOW do you achieve systematic evaluation and improvement of key processes.

FOR DEFINITIONS OF KEY TERMS (IN CAPS), see the Glossary of Key Terms on pages 60-66 of the Business Criteria pdf document.

APPENDIX 1B

BALDRIGE ORGANIZATIONAL PROFILE ON LINE VERSION

E-Baldrige Organizational Profile is available at the Baldrige website Check column 1 to indicate questions that would be easy for your organization to provide an answer on which there is widespread agreement and consensus.

Check column 2 to indicate questions for which data are not readily available, but your organization could produce data to provide a consensus response to address this question.

Check column 3 to indicate questions that would be difficult or impossible to answer and/or reach agreement and consensus on at this time.
 1 2 3
 Easy to Could Difficult
 answer answer to answer

P.1 Organizational Description
 Organizational Environment
 1.a What are your
 organization's main
 products and services?
 1.b What are the delivery
 mechanisms used to provide
 your products and services
 to your customers?
 2. What is your
 organizational culture?
 What are your stated
 What are your stated
 values?
 3. What is your employee
 profile? What are their
 educational levels? What
 are your organization's
 workforce and job
 diversity, organized
 bargaining units, use of
 contract employees, and
 special health and safety
 requirements?
 4. What are your major
 technologies, equipment,
 and facilities?
 5. What is the regulatory
 environment under which
 your organization
 operates? What are the
 applicable occupational
 health and safety
 regulations;
 accreditation,
 certification, or
 registration requirements;
 relevant industry
 standards; and
 environmental, financial,
 and product regulations?
 Organizational Relationships
 1.a What is your
 organizational structure
 and governance system?
 1.b What are the reporting
 relationships among your
 governance board, senior
 leaders, and parent
 organization, as
 appropriate?
 2.a What are your key customer
 and stakeholder groups and
 market segments, as
 appropriate?
 2.b What are their key
 requirements and
 expectations for your
 products, services, and
 operations? What are the
 differences in these
 requirements and
 expectations among
 customer and stakeholder
 groups and market
 segments?
 3.a What role do suppliers and
 distributors play in your
 value creation and key
 support processes? What
 role, if any, do they
 play in your
 organizational innovation
 processes?
 3.b What are your most
 important types of
 suppliers and
 distributors?
 3.c What are your most
 important supply chain
 requirements?
 3.d How do you achieve
 systematic evaluation and
 improvement of key
 processes?
P.2 Organizational Challenges
 Competitive Environment
 1.a What is your competitive
 position?
 1.b What is your relative size
 and growth in your
 industry or markets
 served?
 1.c What are the numbers and
 types of competitors for
 your organization?
 2.a What are the principal
 factors that determine
 your success relative to
 your competitors?
 2.b What are any key changes
 taking place that affect
 your competitive
 situation?
 Strategic Challenges
 1. What are your key
 business, operational,
 and human resource
 strategic challenges?
 2. What are your key
 strategic challenges
 associated with
 organizational
 sustainability?
 Performance Improvement
 System
 1. What are your key
 strategic challenges
 associated with
 organizational
 sustainability?
 2. How do you achieve
 systematic evaluation and
 improvement of key
 processes?


APPENDIX 2

MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING

THIS MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING ("MOU") is made and entered into this--day of --, 20 - (the "Effective Date") by and between [insert name and address of company sponsor] ("Sponsor"), and the undersigned students of XXX University ("Students").

Whereas, Sponsor desires to provide Students with a practical business consulting project suitable for their use as a project in the Business School course [insert course title], course number MBA XXX at XXX University, and make subsequent use of the results of the project, and;

Whereas, Students desire to undertake this problem as their consulting project for this course.

Now therefore, the parties wish to enter this MOU as follows: 1. Project Description [Insert a succinct description of the project and its objectives.] 2. Support to be provided by Sponsor [Insert a description of support to be provided by the Sponsor, e.g. information, technical or other mentoring, financial resources, materials, etc., if any.] 3. Intended Project Deliverables [Insert a description of what the students intend to deliver to the Sponsor as a result of the Project.] 4. No Warranty. The parties agree that this project is an educational exercise, the results of which are in no way guaranteed or warranted. In particular, no representation or guarantee is made regarding the accuracy, completeness, or utility of the results of this project.

5. Confidentiality

Students agree to hold in confidence all materials, documents, and information disclosed to them in writing or other tangible form pursuant to this MOU (collectively, "Confidential Information"). Confidential Information shall be identified as such by Sponsor at the time it is delivered to Students. Confidential Information may not be disclosed to classmates not party to this agreement or any other third parties without prior written consent of Sponsor, with the exception that Confidential Information may be disclosed to the course instructor without additional consent beyond this MOU. By his or her signature below, the course instructor indicates his or her agreement to not disclose or use any such Confidential Information which may be disclosed to him or her. The obligations of confidentiality and limited use, however, shall not apply to information that Students or the course instructor can establish:

A. is in the public domain at the time of disclosure or development;

B. is published or otherwise becomes part of the public domain after disclosure or development through no fault of Students;

C. was in possession of Students at the time of disclosure or development and was not acquired from the Sponsor under an obligation of confidence; and

D. is independently developed by the Students without use of or reliance on any Confidential Information.

This obligation to not disclose Confidential Information shall terminate three years following conclusion of the academic term in which this project is completed.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have executed this MOU as of the date first set forth above.

Sponsor Signature; Printed name Student's Signature; Printed name

By the signature below, the course instructor indicates his or her agreement not to disclose or use any Confidential Information disclosed to him or her during the course of this project, and also indicates the he or she has reviewed this project and accepts it for use in this course.

Course Instructor Signature; Printed name

APPENDIX 3

DISCIPLINARY ACTION POLICY

The following process and guidelines are discussed in face-to-face with signed agreements to assist in managing a fair and equitable process if the team is confronted with a dysfunctional member.

The group members discuss the issue (i.e. non-attendance at meetings of a member, etc.) The group members discuss how to handle the situation.

If disciplinary action is decided upon by the group, the group members inform the team member by providing an oral reminder (via phone) that serves as the initial formal phase of the process to identify to the member what problems the group is having. This reminder is designed to correct the problem (i.e., not attending virtual meetings, not contributing a task on time, etc.)

If the oral reminder is unsuccessful and the group decides that a more formalized version is needed, the group drafts a written reminder of what the problem is and what corrective actions the group expects. Furthermore, specific timetables, actions, and consequences for failing to comply are included.

If the written reminder is unsuccessful and the group chooses to terminate the team member from the group, they are required to submit to the member a written summary outlining the problems, actions taken to date, and their final recommendation-termination. Termination means that the terminated member will not receive a grade for the group work. If the terminated member wishes to appeal, he/she must do so to the instructor in writing within 7 days of receiving the termination document from the group. A copy of the written appeal must be submitted by the terminated member to each group member as well as the instructor. Upon receipt of the written appeal to the team members, the team members are to provide the instructor with a copy of the Written Reminder and the chronology of the disciplinary action taken.

The instructor will review both documents (appeal and the written reminder), interview team members, and make a final decision.

APPENDIX 4 ASSESSMENT OF USAGE OF THE BALDRIGE ORGANIZATIONAL PROFILE
Your feedback is valued. Take about 2 minutes to reflect on your team
experience of analyzing a company using the Baldrige Organizational
Profile.

Before you learned about the organizational profile, how did you
analyze a company, your competition, suppliers, etc.?

The Core Ideas of the Organizational Profile (Organizational
Description and Organizational Challenges) are:
Unoriginal 1 2 3 4 5 Original
Trivial 1 2 3 4 5 Important
Dull 1 2 3 4 5 Provocative
Incomplete 1 2 3 4 5 Complete

The Format and Design of Organizational Characteristics are:
Rambling 1 2 3 4 Clear
Not easy to use 1 2 3 4 5 Easy to use
Not relevant to Relevant to
Business practice 1 2 3 4 5 business practice
Not important 1 2 3 4 5 Important

The Content of the Organizational Characteristics:
Not relevant to Relevant to
business practice 1 2 3 4 5 business practice
Not important 1 2 3 4 5 Important

The Organizational Profile's contribution to learning and education:
Not important 1 2 3 4 5 Important
Unclear 1 2 3 4 5 Clear

The Organizational Profile's use in my work
when analyzing competitors, suppliers, etc. has:
No application 1 2 3 4 5 Application
Not important 1 2 3 4 5 Important

The Organizational Profile's use in my class
work when analyzing cases:
No application 1 2 3 4 5 Application
Not important 1 2 3 4 5 Important

Your thoughts on any other aspect of OP: --

Table 1: Assessment of OP by MBA Students

 Weighted
 1 2 3 4 5 Percentage *
Core Ideas of Organizational Profile
Unoriginal 3 3 1 Original 67.86%
Trivial 1 3 3 Important 82.14%
Dull 4 1 2 Provocative 67.86%
Incomplete 3 4 Complete 89.29%
Format and Design of Organizational Characteristics
Rambling 1 4 2 Clear 78.57%
Not easy to use 1 2 4 Easy to use 85.71%
Not relevant to 2 5 Relevant to 92.86%
business practice business
 practice
Not important 4 3 Important 85.71%
Organizational Characteristics
Ignores Theory 1 4 2 Extends 78.57%
 Theory
Ignores Practice 2 4 1 Extends 71.43%

Organizational Profile's contribution Practice
to education and learning
Not important 2 2 3 Important 78.57%
Unclear 2 2 3 Clear 78.57%

Organizational Profile's use in my work when
analyzing competitors, suppliers, etc. has:
No application 1 3 3 Application 78.57%
Not important 3 4 Important 89.29%
Organizational Profile's use in my
class work when analyzing cases:
No application 1 4 2 Application 75.00%
Not important 1 4 2 Important 78.57%

* The weighted percentage is calculated in the following way: We will
use the "Unoriginal" and "Original" ratings under the "Core Ideas of
Organizational Profile" as an example. If a person assigned a rating
of '1' then they thought that the Core Ideas were not original at all
(0%). If assigned a '5', they thought it was completely original
(100%). A '2' is 25% original, a '3' 50% original, and a '4' 75%
original. So, after applying these weights MBA students thought the
Core Ideas were 67.86% original.

Table 2: Assessment of OP by Undergrads

Core Ideas of Organizational Profile

 1 2 3 4 5

Unoriginal 9 15 8
Trivial 4 16 12
Dull 1 3 11 13 5
Incomplete 1 3 12 15

Format and Design of Organizational Characteristics
Rambling 1 3 5 11 13
Not easy to use 1 1 8 14 9
Not relevant to business practice 1 2 12 18
Not important 2 2 12 17

Organizational Characteristics
Ignores Theory 1 7 15 9
Ignores Practice 2 7 14 8

Organizational Profile's contribution to education and learning
Not important 4 19 10
Unclear 2 8 14 9

Organizational Profile's use in my work when analyzing
competitors, suppliers, etc. has:
No application 5 19 9
Not important 1 5 17 10

Organizational Profile's use in my class work when analyzing cases:
No application 1 6 14 12
Not important 3 7 12 11

 Weighted
 Percentage *

Original 74.22%
Important 81.25%
Provocative 63.64%
Complete 83.06%

Format and Design of Organizational Characteristics
Clear 74.24%
Easy to use 71.97%
Relevant to business practice 85.61%
Important 83.33%

Organizational Characteristics
Extends Theory 75.00%
Extends Practice 72.58%

Important 79.55%
Clear 72.73%

Organizational Profile's use in my work when analyzing
competitors, suppliers, etc. has:
Application 78.03%
Important 77.27%

Organizational Profile's use in my class work when analyzing cases:
Application 78.03%
Important 73.48%

* The weighted percentage is calculated in the following way: We
will use the "Unoriginal" and "Original" ratings under the "Core
Ideas of Organizational Profile" as an example. If a person
assigned a rating of '1' then they thought that the Core Ideas
were not original at all (0%). If assigned a '5', they thought it
was completely original (100%). A '2' is 25% original, a '3' 50%
original, and a '4' 75% original. So, after applying these weights
the Undergrads thought the Core Ideas were 74.22% original.


APPENDIX 5

THOUGHTS ON OP

The thoughts on other aspects of OP are given below

MBA Thoughts:

* I am still not comfortable with using the OP because I don't really have a lot of experience with it, and because most teachers still ask for a SWOT analysis.

* This has been a good tool that provides a quick snapshot to allow you to ensure your thoughts and research are on track.

Undergrad Thoughts:

* Redundancy is a major issue. Not in the criteria but in the answers to some of the questions.

* I truly enjoyed the facts and important information that the OP provided. I also like its easy to use website. For me, it was very effective for two of my courses.

* Could better defined and organized.

* It's OK.

* I feel it provides a good basis for analyzing company processes and effectiveness.

REFERENCES

AACSB International (2005 June) eNEWSLINE 4(6). Retrieved August 16, 2005 from http://www.aacsb.edu/publications/enewsline/archive_print/.

B schools for the 21st century (2006, April) Business Week, Editorial, 112.

Bennis, W. G. & J. O'Toole (2005, May). How business schools lost their way, Harvard Business Review Online Edition.

Bingham, W. V. D. & B. V. Moore (1959). How to Interview (4th ed.) New York: Harper and Row.

Block, P. (2000). Flawless consulting: A guide to getting your expertise used. San Diego, CA: Jossey-Bass/Pfeiffer & Co.

Blodgett, N. (1999). Service organizations increasingly adopt Baldrige model. Quality Progress, (December), 74-78.

Bobrowski, P. M., & J. H. Bantham (1994). State quality initiatives: mini Baldrige to Baldrige plus. National Productivity Review, 13(3) (Summer), 423-438.

Business schools: But can you teach it? Economist (2004, May 20).

Camp, R. C. (1989). Benchmarking. Milwaukee, WI: ASQ Quality Press.

Careers-in-Business. Consulting: facts and trends. Retrieved August 16, 2005 from http://www.careers-inbusiness. com/consulting/mcfacts.htm.

Client (2001, September 27). [Personal Interview]. Organizational Profile. Anytown, USA.

DeBaylo, P. W. (1999). Ten reasons why Baldrige model works. The Journal for Quality and Participation, (January/February), 1-4.

Evans, J. R.& W. M. Lindsay (2005). The management and control of quality (Chapter 3). Mason: OH: Thomson SouthWestern.

Friga, P., R. Bettis, & R. Sullivan (2003). Changes in graduate management education and new business school strategies for the 21st century. Academy of Management Learning and Education, 2, (3).

Junkins, J. R. (1994). Insights of a Baldrige award winner. Quality Progress, 27(3), 57-58.

Kolb, D. A. & R. Fry (1975). Toward an applied theory of experiential learning In C. Cooper (ed.) Theories of group process. London: John Wiley.

Management education: No more boring analysis? Economist (2004, May 13).

Mintzberg, H. (2004). Managers not MBAs: A hard look at the soft practice of managing and management development San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler.

National Institute of Standards. Organizational Profile. In 2005 Criteria for Performance Excellence. Retrieved August 16, 2005 from http://www.quality.nist.gov/Criteria.htm.

Pfeffer, J. & C.T. Fong (2002). The end of business schools? Less success than meets the eye. Academy of Management Learning and Education. 1(1), 78-95.

Ramachander, S. (2005, May 15). Making global managers. The Hindu magazine section. Retrieved August 16, 2005 from http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/mag/2005/05/15/index.htm.

Reimann, C. (2005). In an interview by one of the authors.

Shergold, K. & D. M. Reed (1996). Striving for excellence: how self-assessment using business excellence model can result in step improvements in all areas of business activities. TQM Magazine, 8 (6), 48-52.

Ramachandran Natarajan, Tennessee Technological University

Bonita Barger, Tennessee Technological University
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