Performance Excellence Process
Baldrige Workshops
Global Insights Archive
A True Open Source Management System:
The Secret Behind Baldrige Excellence
by Craig A. Anderson
October 2005


than competing management models and systems. After all, it's free, easily
performance management tool in the world. How can this be?
performance management tool in the world. How can this be?


It's actually not surprising when you think about it. Imagine you go into your local
bookstore and pull yet another management "how to" book off the shelf. What do
you have? One person's ideas, based necessarily on the limited perspectives and
experiences that any one person could have.

Now, in comparison, pick up the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence
(
http://www.baldrige.nist.gov/Criteria.htm). Cost? Free. Quality? Well, judge for
yourself. You have just entered the world of open source management. What does
that mean? Well, much like the collaborative open source models that are
transforming how we process and share information -- file sharing, internet
telephony, open source operating systems and databases -- Baldrige is a
disruptive technology for management.

Baldrige fundamentally rejects the notion that any one "expert" has the answers
you need. Save your consulting fees. Rather, Baldrige, as an open source model,
offers you the shared experience and wisdom of thousands of hard-nosed, hands-
on practitioners in all types of organizations. The constantly evolving Baldrige
Criteria represent the current consensus among Baldrige users of what
performance excellence looks like in practice.

But the power comes not just from the content of the Criteria, but from the
approach: based on self assessment, the Criteria are designed to engage you
and your team in a dialogue about how best to adopt the open source model to
your organization. You make the connections. You determine relative value. You
identify your most important strengths, and your greatest opportunities for
improvement.

Baldrige Performance Excellence. No magic. Just a shared belief that a
proprietary view of knowledge no longer make sense in a “flat” world where ideas
zip around the Earth at the speed of light.