"You can't solve a problem on the same level you created it."

- A. Einstein




Business performance refers to an ability to act, accomplish and realize tasks and results skilfully and in compliance with requirements. Performance refers often solely to evidence of performance as expressed with measures / indicators. In such cases the issue is about processes and products (goods and services), which can be assessed and compared in relation to goals, standards, previous results, and other organizations. Such results typically pertain to item characteristics, effectiveness, efficiency, and time, and can be expressed in financial and non-financial terms.

The overall performance of a business (business unit) is a composite of:
1. operational effectiveness and efficiency, including product and process characteristics
2. customer-related performance
3. financial and market position related performance.

Often process characteristics are divided into (hard) systemic features and (soft) people issues.

Management in general and also performance management covers all well known P (Plan) - D (Do) - C (Check) - A (Act) phases taken place on all levels of business activities (see Integrated QM model figure 1):
- Setting targets and strategies/means for their realization
- Deploying the strategies and planning actions
- Monitoring results and outcomes

For these purposes there are a lot of appropriate managerial tools available, including:
- Hoshin Kanri methodology for strategic means and targets management
- Balanced strategy scorecard methodology for strategic means and targets communication
- Overall performance assessments methodology for both strategic (Malcolm Baldrige model) and operational (process auditing) assessments
- Operational performance management methods emphasizing diagnostic purposes especially for process management


Juhani Anttila