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Alignment: Using the Balanced Scorecard to Create Corporate Synergies Kindle Edition
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The authors start with a wonderful story:
Imagine an eight-person shell racing up the river populated by highly trained rowers, but each with different ideas of how to achieve success. But rowing at different speeds and in different directions could cause the shell to travel in circles and perhaps capsize. The winning team invariably rows in beautiful synchronism; each rower strokes powerfully but consistently with all the others, guided by a coxswain [corporate center], who has the responsibility for pacing and steering the course of action.
Unfortunately, many firms are like an uncoordinated shell. They consist of strong business units, each populated by highly trained, experienced and motivated executives. But the efforts of the individual businesses are not coordinated.
Unsurprisingly, the authors suggest that their four scorecard perspectives on financials, customers, processes, as well as growth/learning also could be used to create organizational alignment and also find synergies, e.g.
- FINANCIAL: acquiring and integrating other firms, monitoring and governance processes, skills in negotiating with external entities (capital providers, etc.)
- CUSTOMERS: leverage common customers (cross-sales), corporate brand, common customer value propositions across the world,
- PROCESSES: exploiting core competencies in product or production technologies, sourcing or distribution skills, etc.
- LEARNING AND GROWTH: Enhancing human capital thru excellent HR practices, leveraging a common technology, sharing best-practices and knowledge.Read more ›
1. Mobilize change through executive leadership.
2. Translate strategy into operational terms.
3. Align the organization to the strategy.
4. Motivate to make strategy everyone's job.
5. Govern to make strategy a continual process.
When gathering the information needed to write this book, Kaplan and Norton rigorously examined more than 30 organizations which include Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, Citizens Schools, Hilton, IBM, Lockheed Martin, Media General, and the U.S. Army. Note how different these organizations are in terms of their respective products and services, markets, and potentialities for aligning their management processes and systems to the given strategy. I assume that the diversity of the exemplary enterprises during Kaplan and Norton's selection process was deliberate because they are convinced - as am I - that if the core principles of the Balanced Scorecard are applied effectively, any organization (regardless of its size or nature) can create highly beneficial synergies by getting its management and measurement in proper alignment with its strategy. In this book, Kaplan and Norton explain how to do that.Read more ›
Leaders have always found it much easier to formulate strategy than to turn strategies into accomplishments. As the authors note, many such organizations are like an uncoordinated 8-person rowing shell than a championship team.
In studies of the Balanced Scorecard Hall of Fame organizations, the authors learned that organizational alignment is a more important factor than mobilization, strategic translation, employee motivation and governance in achieving superior results during execution.
The authors identify eight essential check points for successful organizational alignment:
1. An enterprise value proposition (to lead strategic guidelines)
2. Board and shareholder alignment (to approve, review and monitor strategy)
3. Coordination between the corporate offices and the corporate support units (by creating corporate policies)
4. Coordination between the corporate office and the business units (business unit strategy matching the corporate direction)
5. Coordination between the business units and the support units (to create appropriate functional strategies)
6. Alignment between business units and their customers (an on-going to and fro)
7.Read more ›
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