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    In many of the companies that have abolished traditional budgeting, the balanced scorecard has become a true cornerstone in the new management process, instead of a competitor to the traditional budget with the two often sending conflicting and confusing signals to bewildered managers. Leaving the budget in Statoil in 2005 resulted in a turbo-charging of our scorecard process, after having operated with budgets and scorecards in parallel since 1997. Now the organisation realised that we were serious about the scorecard, it was no longer just a new box on top of all the old ones.

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    "Peter Ferdinand Drucker, who left us in 2005, would have reached ten decades this year. Through his 39 books, countless articles, and literally thousands of speeches around the globe his legacy as the father of modern management thinking is well entrenched, and the penetrating questions he so humbly posed continue to challenge and inspire all of us working in the organizational world today. Covering the entire Drucker canon is well beyond the scope of a single article, so in these few pages I’d like to share with you some of my favorite Drucker questions and concepts, and challenge you to look deep within yourself and your organization in considering responses to queries I believe are as relevant today as they were when Peter tapped them out on his trusty Brother typewriter years ago."

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    In this article, Paul illustrates why and how Balanced Scorecard as a management methodology assumes more significance in the light of the severe recession.  As a system that has proven remarkably in solving many a management challenge, BSC is versatile to come in handy in crisis situations as well.  With specific insights into dealing with the four balanced scorecard perspectives in difficult business conditions, Paul highlights how many of the standard indicators assume an elevated stature during a downturn.


    Here in the United States the dour pronouncement that we’ve entered “the worst recession since the great depression,” has been oft-repeated and discussed in the news media, at town-hall meetings, and around water coolers from coast to coast. Headlines in other countries offer their own grim declarations, and the bottom line is that this downturn is unquestionably severe and has left virtually no economy unscathed.

    Over the past twenty years, thousands of organizations around the globe have turned to the Balanced Scorecard in an effort to drive alignment, enhance decision-making, and most importantly, execute their unique strategies. The system has proven remarkably capable in solving these vexing management challenges, but can the versatile tool assist us in the midst of this epic crisis? I believe it can, and in the paragraphs below will make the case for a “Downturn Balanced Scorecard.”

    Depending on the strategy you’re choosing to pursue, some of the indicators I discuss below may be found in your existing Balanced Scorecard. However, I’m suggesting that even if the areas are currently present, they must assume elevated stature in the current environment. If on the other hand, they are not part of your extant Scorecard, consider adding them to ensure you’re able to make more informed, and ultimately, better decisions during these chaotic times.  Let’s look at each of the four typical Balanced Scorecard perspectives to determine what you must be monitoring during a downturn.

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    This article deals with some of the key ingredients to a successful Balanced Scorecard implementation.

    Highlights

    • Putting in place the right team is vital for Balanced Scorecard success.
    • Your Scorecard team should be composed of senior executives who possess a deep understanding of the system, and are committed to its success.
       

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    This article has been adapted from a management report based on an extensive research on gaining maximum value from HR shared services. The report reveals the key to developing the full potential of HR shared services in the context of the changing role of HR and the drive for greater corporate effectiveness.

    James Creelman observes that organizations looking to launch, or expand, shared services in 2009 face an interesting conflict that will be a challenge to resolve. Off-shored shared services present compelling financial cost saving opportunities and this will sit well with under-pressure C-suite executives.

    With the help of case studies, James Creelman has shown how shared services have brought about a radical shift in the way services are delivered. The most common tool to measure performance within shared service centers is a Service Level Agreement (SLA). James stresses on the importance of SLAs as a way of instilling proper relationships between the customer and the service provider. Research has proven that shared services organizations are the most effective when customer satisfaction and cost reduction are given equal importance. The case studies in this article demonstrate that shared service centers will achieve both if architected properly.
     

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    In this article, author, management consultant and Balanced Scorecard expert Paul Niven sounds a strong note of caution against overloading Balanced Scorecards with Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and Strategic Objectives.

    Once early adopters of the Balanced Scorecard started seeing results, organizations were convinced that more objectives and measures would make performance management even more effective. This led to overcrowded Strategy Maps and Balanced Scorecard Maps that failed to offer a coherent picture of strategy and strategy execution.

    The author points out that organizations experience an overwhelming temptation to factor in every objective and measure. However, more does not mean better. According to the author, such an approach violates the number one rule of strategy and strategy execution – focus. Instead, the author advises organizations to focus on quality rather than quantity. By focusing on what is really essential, organizations can create a set of objectives and measures that represents what is unique to them. This creates organization-wide clarity and makes it possible to communicate strategy powerfully, thus paving the way for effective performance management.

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    In this article, the author examines the need for finding common ground between strategy management and operations management. While strategy management seeks to make strategy relevant to employee’s day-to-day responsibilities, operations management seeks strategic context for implementation and improvement projects. The author presents a performance management framework that describes the common ground.

    The author points out that the lack of connect between strategic performance and operational performance leads to issues such as lack of alignment, misallocation of resources, short-term focus, and a failure to perceive risk, among other things. 

    Moving on, the author demonstrates how methodologies such as the Balanced Scorecard and Lean Six Sigma can potentially create the common ground between strategic and operational performance management. What organizations need is a framework that makes this intersection possible.

    The author presents one possible solution, which is in consonance with the needs of strategy management and operation management practices such as the four-stage Deming improvement cycle of Plan-Do-Check-Act. The author goes on to provide a detailed elaboration of how, at every stage, it is possible to create strategic and operational components, with related perspectives, tools, and techniques. By viewing the management of performance as a system with strategic and operational components, the author concludes, this framework is offers a unifying foundation for an organization’s performance management needs.

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    In this article, Bjarte Bogsnes – member of the EPM Review Editorial Board and a leading practitioner-thinker of the Beyond Budgeting philosophy – first scrutinizes the five myths most commonly held about ‘Beyond Budgeting’ and then proceeds to throw light on what the approach actually means for enterprise performance management.

    As a concept, Beyond Budgeting has its roots and origins well back in time. However, as a management model, it is just a decade old. Consequently, the concept has not reached a stage where clear and consistent understanding can be safely expected. In fact, a number of myths and misunderstandings have developed about Beyond Budgeting.

    The author says the five most common myths about Beyond Budgeting are:

    1. It is only about removing budgets
    2. It is only about rolling forecasts
    3. It is only for rich companies
    4. It means losing control
    5. It only works in Scandinavia

     Drawing from his rich experience, the author examines each one of the myths to reveal the realities and insights from the world of business and organization that have influenced the evolution of the Beyond Budgeting concept.

    In the concluding section, the author shares with readers the 12 principles that actually constitute Beyond Budgeting and make it a powerful management approach for unlocking the performance potential of any organization.  

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    In this entertaining article, author, management consultant and Balanced Scorecard expert Paul Niven takes a closer look at movie making to borrow lessons for making management meetings better.

    Ultimately, movies are all about stories and how they progress, scene by scene. While volumes have been written on creating winning scenes, expert screenwriters have found a way to keep it very simple…and very effective.

    Just as scenes can drive a movie’s progression, meetings can drive an organization’s performance management. Two of the most critical shortcomings of management meetings are that they lack constructive difference of opinions and typically have no context to guide the discussions on performance. The author focuses on these issues and shows how asking and answering three simple questions makes management meetings highly effective. The author then illustrates this approach by applying it to a typical meeting for reviewing Balanced Scorecard results. Adopting such an approach to all management meetings, the author promises, can be highly rewarding.

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