Systems Thinking

To be effective and competitive in today’s rapidly changing business environment, organizations must examine how they operate. Traditional stovepipes and highly hierarchical systems and structures may no longer provide the basis for innovation, efficiency or best use of resources driving performance excellence. What is the alternative? Based upon our work with a wide variety of organizations from public and private sectors, we have concluded that a “systems view” of the enterprise that both informs and guides a consistent decision-making process for the organization is key to achieving performance excellence.

A systems view is a perspective that allows decision-makers to simultaneously consider how the interrelationships of leadership, strategic planning, workforce engagement, customer engagement, operations, and knowledge management, contribute to enterprise results. The systems view has its foundation in research conducted over the last two decades, by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), together with leading thinkers on management theory. This work provides a systems framework through which to examine organizational health and enterprise decision-making.

Sustained performance improvement and excellence can be achieved only by seeing and managing interrelationships within the enterprise, rather than by asserting and hoping for linear cause and effect. Based on extensive research into what drives organizational success, NIST developed a set of interlinked criteria that any organization may use to identify opportunities for improvement while pursuing organizational excellence. These criteria are a de facto set of requirements that define organizational success from both systematic and systemic perspectives.

At Strategy Bridge, we use the NIST-developed Core Values and Concepts to serve as a foundation for our work in assisting clients to achieve performance excellence in their respective organizations and enterprise systems. These Core Values and Concepts include:

  • Visionary leadership
  • Customer-driven excellence
  • Agility
  • Focus on the future
  • Focus on results and creating value
  • A systems perspective

We have master strategic planning facilitators that are trained in applying and implementing the Baldrige Performance Excellence Criteria and Core Values in both government and commercial enterprises. Our consultants will work closely with your leadership to develop a systems perspective framework of your organization and facilitate the development of a strategic plan, goals and objectives. We will also assist in the assessment of your current systems and performance, and then help you to develop effective systems and processes through which strategic goals and objectives for performance excellence can be effectively executed.