The NHQA Journey

June 29, 2015

As a leader, are you fully committed to the Baldrige journey?

The following is from The Executive Guide to the Baldrige Criteria (Leonard & McGuire) and applies in the same way to the NHQA !

• Leaders must decide early in this process if the organization

desires to achieve targeted success as described by previous

Baldrige Award-winning organizations. We recommend that

leaders make a list of key reasons they want to focus on Baldrige,

so they can fully articulate that information to the management

team. All team members must understand why the journey is

important and the steps required along the way.

• Leaders must determine who will be the champions that assist in

the promotion of this effort. Long-term sustainability for Baldrige

implementation requires that everyone understand the length and

depth of the commitment to fully implement.

• Leaders must ensure that the fundamental concepts of quality

management are understood by the team and that Baldrige is a

major ingredient, not a stand-alone issue or just another program.

Baldrige requires the organization of daily work and priorities.

• Leaders must recognize the potential for leadership in different

ways and contexts. First-level employees may have substantial

impact on the success of Baldrige implementation. Leaders must

consider who can assist with implementation. Senior leaders,

first-level leaders, colleagues, peers, and all employees must

be involved. Leaders must be able to describe the Baldrige

process and discuss its potential benefits, considerations, and

disadvantages while understanding implementation even on a

department or team level.

Denis Leonard has a degree in construction engineering an M.B.A. and a Ph.D. in quality management. Denis is a Fellow of the American Society for Quality, a Certified Quality Manager, Auditor, and Six Sigma Black Belt. He has been an Examiner for the Baldrige National Quality Award Board of Examiners a Judge on the International Team Excellence Competition and a Lead Judge on the National Housing Quality Award. A former Professor of Quality at the University of Wisconsin, he has experience as a quality manager in the home building industry as well as construction engineer, site manager, and in training, auditing, and consulting with expertise in strategic and operational quality improvement initiatives. His work has achieved national quality, environmental, and safety management awards for clients. 

Denis is co-author of The Executive Guide to Understanding and Implementing the Baldrige Criteria: Improve Revenue and Create Organizational Excellence.