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Friday, September 21, 2018


May 31, 2010 by  
Filed under Industry News

Performance is the result of activities which are both effective and efficient. In short this means doing the right things and doing them well.

Desired results are achieved by aligning processes and people. Basically, organizations are made up of systems. Systems consist of people, structures, and processes that work together. The level of efficiency and the congruency of a system make an organization healthy or unhealthy.

W. Edwards Deming estimated that more than 94% of organizational problems were attributed to the “system”. So why do organizations automatically assume system failure is caused by people and focus on changing worker behavior instead of recognizing a flawed process and performing an analysis to determine the root cause of the problem? Maybe it’s because the focus is not on systems and because it’s so much easier to blame the worker than to look internally at the barriers.

Deming believed profound knowledge generally comes from outside the system, because a system cannot understand itself since prior experiences will bias objectivity, preventing critical analysis of the organization. Systems can’t be improved in isolation and critical self-examination is difficult. Also, it’s rare for organizational insiders to frankly criticize systems without the fear of reprisals.

An organization must be eager to learn and improve its systems in order to be healthy. An outside impartial analysis can provide a broad view to quickly identify the real causes of issues in organizations and where to work to address them. By focusing on the entire system, consultants can attempt to identify solutions that address as many problems as possible in the system. The positive effect of those solutions leverages performance improvement.

Human Performance Improvement (HPI) is the systematic process of discovering and analyzing important human performance gaps, along with understanding the processes and practices that define how an organization functions. Sometimes those performance gaps are training related and sometimes they are process related. Using HPI, the current state of performance within the organization can be diagnosed to find the root cause(s) for performance deficiencies and cost-effective solutions can be developed and implemented.

The whole idea is to understand how things influence one another – to determine specifically which people, activities, structures and processes to focus on to ensure barriers are reduced or removed enabling the organization to move forward as a healthier organization.

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