Posted by Harry Hertz, the Baldrige Cheermudgeon
Let me start by clearly stating that Fran and I have been married over forty years and I am very happily married. I have no interest in dating. But, much as I hope your curiosity was piqued by the title of this blog, mine was piqued by a recent HBR Morning Advantage posting entitled “Love in the Age of Data.” It referred to a recent Wall Street Journal essay recounting the successful search for love and marriage by Amy, a thirty year-old woman with a background in data analysis.
Amy was not finding the “right man”. She tried two of the web-based matching sites, with little success. So she wrote profiles of her ideal man, submitted those male profiles to the dating services to see what women would respond, and then looked at the responding women’s profiles. She developed a database of the women’s characteristics and their manner of response to her fictitious male profiles. She modified her own personal profile and resubmitted it.
What does this have to do with Baldrige, you ask? Read on! Know it or not, Amy was making good use of the 2013-2014 Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence! As leader of the enterprise, she set a clear vision for the future. Then, she strategically designed her work system to achieve her purpose. She outsourced the data gathering function, after implementing a work process to achieve the right profile for the data gatherers (matching services). She sought comparative and competitive data by benchmarking women who were attracted to her ideal mates. Based on the benchmark results from women who responded to her fictitious men, she modified her profile and used the women’s multiple modes of communication to respond to men who answered her revised profile. In using these multiple modes of communication, she demonstrated clear customer focus. There are more analogies, but I will stop at these.
And what about the results? She is no longer dating the wrong men for her and is now happily married! Have you applied the Baldrige Criteria in your life situations?