Review & Audit
Everybody finds their own path through
the Big Picture - they select and focus their efforts on the
concepts and tools that are most relevant (and beneficial) for
them at the time. In this way, they can target systematic development
in the areas that will give them biggest payback in terms of
their performance and potential, and they make the implementation
of systematic approaches to management more manageable. In fact
we do not currently know of any organisation who does it all,
but we know of a number which do more and more each year - and
continue to reap the benefits.
An essential part of their cycle is an annual Review and Audit. This
is an opportunity to objectively analyse progress on systematic
management over the preceeding year, to highlight the biggest
gaps (or conversely the biggest opportunities) and to plan their
developments (and targeted benefits) for the following year.
The tools they use to do this are varied (once
again reflecting the organisation's needs and progress). The
Review & Audit panel of the big picture illustrates the range
of tools from which they typically make their selection. The
tools illustrated are:
Customer Survey (interviews & questionaires). These are used to develop an objective
picture of customer satisfaction and opportunities across a extensive
range of topics. While customer surveys have received a (justifiably)
bad press recently, customers are still willing to engage in
dialogue when they are confident that you are trying to put more
effort into them (the customer) that you are expecting them to
put into you. This means that personal contact is essential,
and carefully crafted questions that flex to the needs of the
customer, and even inspire their thinking. In this way the survey
is more likely to be an invisible tool of quantification rather
than a mass-mailed burden. The site contains comprehensive examples
of both the interview
structure and the questionnaire,
both of which are purely examples (food for thought), and need
to be editted, and used with care as part of a (personal contact)
audit strategy which your customers can be clear will benefit
Culture Audit (Values Survey). These are used to develop a clear understanding
of what is valued in the organisation, and need to be developed
against a background of what your organisation 'intends' to value.
Typically it would be a list of your values, with questions asking
people to indicate the extent to which they truly believe themselves
and their colleagues really are valued for pursuing those behaviours
(by their direct management, by the wider organisation, by their
peers, etc). We have not provided an example for this, since
it needs to be based on the intended values of your own organisation
- but you could probably adapt the Employee
Survey example to help with this. Spider diagrams are a very
powerful way of presenting the results.
Employee Survey (interviews & questionnaires) are an excellent way of gaining insights
and quantifying the extent of issues across the organisation.
Though less sensitive than Customer Surveys, the issues can be
the same, and a low response rate would indicate that staff feel
their efforts in completing the questionnaire are unlikely to
be rewarded in terms of a well-thought out and constructive response
by 'the organisation'. In the event that such trust is weak,
it is important to follow some of the same principles as outlined
in the sustomer survey section above.
The site contains comprehensive examples of both an employee
interview and a sophisticated
These use systematic principles (as outlined in the big picture
and on the website) as a context, and either may be editted (and
cut down) to suit your requirements.
Management Audit is a means of evaluating the extent to which individual
managers are pursuing a systematic approach to their responsibilities.
The example included
in the website consists of two self-audit questions for each
of the 6Ps, together with six supporting
pages which clearly explain the supporting evidence required.
The best process for the management audit is self-completion,
followed by a review with a senior mentor, which looks in more
detail at the scores and the evidence. Though such a process
does generate data for review and audit, it is more powerful
if it is focused on individual improvement in a supportive (but
Process Review (& value-stream audit).
Processes represent the
means of embodying learning to deliver sustained performance
improvement. As such they are an essential subject for review
and audit - without them there is no real basis for audit, and
no sure means for harnessing the result. However, most of such
improvement should take place on a continuing basis and be managed
at the process team level. The focus of review and audit therefore
is to look at how well this happens, and so the website contains
a useful self analysis tool
for reviewing the management of processes. As yet the tool does
not contain a specific component for Value-Stream Audit, but
we are currently working on this with some 'Lean' experts.
Implementation Audit (& improvement
planning). This is a
structured analysis of the extent to which last year's planned
progress on systematic managment was implemented, and a means
of highlighting the priorities for next year. The example on
the website is one for the early stages of systematic management
implementation, and allows for the organisation to highlight
its current priorities and to evaluate progress against these.
Quadrant Chart Audit Tool (& other
method audit tools).
These are simple scoring frameworks which can be used to quantify
the quality of implementation of a number of the key tools in
systematic management. Currently, examples exist for auditing
Quadrant Charts, Process
Management, Problem Solving
and Process Planning (QFD).
Each can be used to measure progress, and to highlight opportunities
for further improvement.
Self Assessment Model. The Self-Assessment Model (SAM)
is a comprehensive set of scales covering all 36 principles within
systematic management, and providing 10 point scales for assessing
organisational progress against each. It has been included here
with some degree of trepidation, because the higher order achievements
on each scale tend to only make real sense to organisations that
have made significant progress on the scale already. However,
we have included it, because of its power in placing the organisation's
determination of its own path and destination squarely in the
hands of the organisation. It provides an opportunity for an
organisation to develop a comprehensive picture of its progress,
and to set its own targets for further progress.
Further tools which are designed to assist Review
& Audit, and are available through the website are: a slide
deck on Review & Audit
and one on Spring Clean
(a shortened form of Review intended to correct any planning
issues during the first cycle of implementation) a slide deck
targeted at Management Review,
and a basic guide to interviewing.
Tools are also listed in the resources
section: Materials to Support Review.
We use many of these resources in our
own approach with clients.
Pages 500 to 502 of Managing
by Design can be found in Appendix
10, which can be read as a pdf file by clicking the link
Chapter 8 of How To Build
A Better Business can be read as a pdf file by clicking here.
To explore another secion of
the big picture, please click on the relevant area of the image
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