Process…The Key to Success

“We get brilliant results from average people managing brilliant processes. We observe that our competitors often get average (or worse) results from brilliant people managing broken processes.”

Sources: “Decoding the DNA of the Toyota Production System,” Steven Spear and Kent Bowen, Harvard Business Review, September-October 1999

I think this is so important especially in times like this when we are all focused on doing more with less. It is critical to understand how your process works; how to apply automation; and how to learn and improve it over time.

I came across a presentation from a webinar I gave back in 2007 on Business Process Management (BPM) which made me think about this. (Some of the vendors in this space include Pega Systems, Lombardi, and Appian.)  It’s also very relevant given Gartner‘s recent report on Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) in the payor space.

“Healthcare insurers should view business process outsourcing as a means to achieve business transformation while minimizing risk. Therefore, using BPO for nondifferentiating business processes is an essential step toward achieving competitive success and business growth.” Joanne Galimi in Healthcare Insurers Business Process Outsourcing Trends (January 23, 2009).

Finding a business partner that can work with you to understand your processes, understand what measures matter, help you improve your approach, and that is willing to take risk based on your success is important.   I always encourage people to not think of companies as vendors but as partners that bring them innovative ideas and help them iterate to improve.  I don’t believe in the big bang theory that I can do it right the first time and never need to change.  That flies in the face of everything that has been observed in different industries.

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