Update on Baldrige Performance Excellence Program

The following letter went out to Baldrige Performance Excellence Program supporters and ASQ member leaders today. I invite your thoughts and comments. Thank you for raising your voice about the value of the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program. We will keep you informed about future developments for this essential program.

This past week Congress passed and the President signed an Appropriations bill that does not provide federal funding for the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program (BPEP) for FY 2012. We want to thank everyone who has and continues to be a part of the collaborative effort of many partners associated with the Program, who contribute to this national asset.

We all know that the Baldrige criteria offers tremendous value in driving performance excellence throughout the country – it is the top program for driving performance excellence across every sector and type of organization, and for making our business, health care, nonprofits and educational institutions more competitive, more efficient, and more successful in generating and sustaining positive outcomes. The need is greater now than ever to make Baldrige more accessible to the organizations and communities that need it throughout the country.

The Baldrige Foundation, the private 501(c)3 that has supported BPEP for over 20 years with the contributions of the private sector, has agreed to support operations of the Baldrige Program through 2012, while key program partners – representing the Baldrige Program, the Baldrige Foundation, the Alliance for Performance Excellence (of state/local quality award programs), and ASQ–explore alternative business and funding models to sustain the mission of Baldrige in the future.

Many of you as stakeholders have provided input into an emerging vision for our future–through focus groups and interviews, blog posts, surveys, and even informal conversations. We will welcome additional input as we shape our collective future together.

The data are compelling and the testimony is powerful: we all know that Baldrige is a proven way to fix what is not working in America and to help make us great again…one organization at a time. Thank you for your unwavering support in the past and for your confidence and support in our future. We will update you regularly on our progress.

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2 Responses to Update on Baldrige Performance Excellence Program

  1. Anthony Carella says:

    I wholeheartedly support the end of public funding for BPEP. This worthwhile program should be used as a model for the public sector. Spend money to seed VERY GOOD possibilities that no one else is funding (since there are way too many merely good ideas [not to mention outright bad ideas] than we taxpayers can afford). Monitor the program and quickly scrap the bad ones and try get the good ones funded by the businesses that profit from them. Both democrats and republicans agree that we need to seriously LEAN SIX SIGMA the entire public sector (apparently with very little help from the public unions that FDR warned against . . . thank you, Wagner) and concentrate on the ESSENTIAL local, state, and federal responsibilities for which these governments were initially organized. The last estimate that I read, stated that the average government worker is about 60% as productive (in GDP terms) as the average private sector worker. [Ergo: minimize the number of government workers and encourage responsible private industry to flourish.] After living through the austerity of the Great Depression, and then growing a great economy from 1946 to 1965 that gave America a huge reserve of power and prosperity, our federal and (some) state governments managed to waste that reserve (and more) through bad fiscal management over the past 45 years. We are at the stage where we don’t need any more Departments, programs, etc. We need to re-engineer and right-size government. [Not exciting, but necessary.] After we have done so, and have our financial house in order, the next generation can start “dreaming” of new VERY GOOD ideas, BUT, this time, please use sound financial management tools when implementing the new laws.

  2. The Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence have proven in healthcare as well as other industries to be an effective roadmap through complex and challenging conditions. The Baldrige criteria provide a structured approach to performance excellence. They move organizations from providing good quality care for one patient one time to all patients all of the time. This article provides a brief history of the Baldrige program, discusses how Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipients are selected, gives a general overview of the criteria, and tells how organizations use the Baldrige criteria.