Avoiding the risk of failure with business improvement methods

There are two essentials for minimising the risk of failure with implementing one or more business improvement methods in any SME / SMB:

  1. Be willing to change the way things are done
  2. Understand the relative Pros and Cons of the available business improvement methods, then choose accordingly

Note: the terms “productivity improvement” and “performance improvement” are considered to be synonymous with “business improvement”.

Business improvement methods on offer

Business improvement methods vary tremendously in their scope, complexity, cost and general applicability to an SME / SMB. Here are some of the methods from which to choose…

  • Business Excellence
  • Operational Excellence
  • Strategic Excellence
  • Total Quality Management (TQM)
  • My Business Excellence (MBE)
  • Lean / Lean Thinking / Lean Process Management / JIT / Supply Chain Management
  • Six Sigma
  • Lean Six Sigma
  • Problem Solving Tools
  • Process Improvement / Continous Improvement / Process Excellence
  • Business Process Reengineering / Process Reengineering
  • Business Process Management
  • Balanced Scorecard

Truth is, every one of these proven methods can yield positive net benefits when applied properly in the right circumstances. And they all overlap to some extent.

The trick is to align your choice(s) to your SME’s / SMB’s current readiness for change, the improvement outcomes you are seeking and the timeframes you believe are acceptable to reach those outcomes. History has shown that a lot of time and money can be wasted by making the wrong choice(s).

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