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Balance Score Cards


Our CEO wants to introduce balance score cards, does anyone have any experience of using these, has introduced these, has anything that wish to share or can recommend any sites that i can do some research for. any advice welcome.
Vivienne Robinson

7 Responses

  1. Why?
    It would help to know why your CEO is looking to introduce a balanced score card.

    I have worked in and with a number of organisations that had already implemented a balanced score card – it didn’t seem to do much for the average employee (either in terms of changed behaviours or pay & benefits) and it seemed to have little positive impact on bottom line performance – it certainly didn’t seem to make management any better at managing!

    That is not to say that the balanced score card is bad news – far from it but like any change of this nature it is incredibly easy to get horribly wrong!

    A book I found not only enjoyable but thought-provoking on the behaviours aspect is Jack Stack’s The Great Game of Business.


    Martin Schmalenbach

  2. Balanced Business Scorecards

    As Graham says the www site he recommends is a good starting point and was highly effective in the change of Nat West and yes unlike Martins experience when implemented correctly changes the culture, behaviours and the bottom line.
    I was involved in bringing BBS and EFQM to Nat West back in the early 90’s and the dedication and long term plans put in place proved to be highly effective (NWIS actually were awarded the British Foundation for Quality Management in 99)
    With the commitment from your CEO and hopefully all your Management Teams this will be a useful tool providing clear guidance to all staff and management on the direction the organisation wishes to take. From the overalll BBS will come comprehensive Team Plans which will filter to individual objectives, thus allowing staff to feel a part of the process and see how their role impacts on the overall business plan.
    It is a long process especially if you incorporate EFQM which I recommend you do as this is also a valuable tool which has been poorly taken up by British Industry, maybe because too many people question its effect without seeing it through to the end as we successfully did within NWB or maybe people will always work for the quick fix which as we all know is ineffective.
    Be prepared to take time in making it work, give it the correct infrastructure and dedication it deserves and you will find it too be a truly useful initiative for your organisation.
    I have plenty of material myself as I qualified in Business Excellence and should you wish to discuss on a one to one basis please do not hesitate to contact me.

    Dale Gunstone

  3. Management models
    If it’s helpful, there’s a good summary of this model in the book ‘Key Management Models’ by Steven ten Have, Wouter ten Have, Frans Stevens and Marcel van der Elst. I recommend this book on many fronts – not least that for each Model it gives information under the headings ‘The Big Idea’, ‘When to use it’ and ‘The final analysis’ – very useful!

  4. why Balanced Scorecard, and not another measurement model?
    Balanced Scorecard (at least the one by Kaplan and Norton) is only one model for designing strategy and performance measures. Are you aware of the other models out there, and have you worked out why Balanced Scorecard is the one for your organisation?

    In addition, Balanced Scorecard (and most of the other models out there) only give you a framework to articulate your strategy and how you will measure it. They don’t give you a framework for bringing those measures to life, reporting them and using them. Many of the organisations that fail with the Balanced Scorecard fail because they underestimate the effort involved in data collecting, analysing, reporting, interpreting and using in decision making.

  5. more models please!
    Stacey makes some good points about the BSC that echo my own experiences.

    She also mentions some other models (as well as raising some further excellent questions)

    Stacey – I’d be interested to know of which other models you have in mind!


    Martin Schmalenbach

  6. more models – as alternatives to Balanced Scorecard
    In response to your question about other models, Martin, there are a few that I am fairly familiar with:

    1) the Performance PRISM, which has the 5 perspectives of Stakeholder Satisfaction, Stakeholder Contribution, Strategies, Process and Capabilities. It came from Cranfield University.

    2) OPM, which is based around 3 zones of measurement: strategic, tactical and operational (which align with 3 main levels in organisational heirarchy). The strategic zone is formed by stakeholder value propositions, the tactical zone by capability gaps relative to delivering stakeholder value, and the operational zone by process results that must be improved to close capability gaps.

    3) Triple Bottom Line, Quadruple Bottom Line and other simple frameworks simply aimed at encouraging thinking beyond just financial outcomes to environmental, social and governance outcomes as well.

    4) There are also frameworks based on national business excellence models (Australian Business Excellence Framework, European Foundation for Quality Management Award Framework, Malcolm Baldrige Award Framework).

    No doubt there are many more, and I actually believe that those I mention above are superior to Balanced Scorecard, by being more “balanced” and making the thinking process more visible and deliberate about which perspectives really matter.


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