Jamesford Approach – Performance Improvement

Jamesford explains its approach to successfully designing and delivering business performance improvement programmes.

Companies are feeling increasing pressure to improve the performance of their businesses. The challenge is to identify the key initiatives that will make the competitive difference and focus the business on its delivery.

Our approach is to define those few game changing initiatives, engage the organisation in their development and mobilise the organisation behind the delivery of the change.

In our experience so many initiatives wither on the vine of business change because:-

  • They have been designed in isolation and lack an integrative approach
  • Fail to encapsulate the views of the people who will deliver the improvement

The following approach, developed over the last 25 years, addresses these issues. It can be applied to specific areas for improvement e.g. new systems, business unit improvement or company wide transformations…..

The process and content are of equal importance for sustainable performance improvement.

The Process steps:-

  1. Analysis A comprehensive review to identify the right issues that frame the opportunity for improvement, define a company’s market position and set compelling and achievable goals.
  2. Design The detailed design of the performance improvement changes is undertaken within a facilitated change programme. This is managed by the board with individual directors championing the delivery of key objectives via a change delivery team. Each team will be comprised of the senior “movers & shakers” in the business i.e. tomorrows leaders. They will consult with stakeholders and involve the business (front line and back office) in the design phase. Care is taken to ensure the improvement changes are aligned across the business.
  3. Delivery The delivery is planned and executed by the same change team. The emphasise is on extensive consultation and communication of the improvements. Care is taken to ensure organisational structures, management processes and reward/recognition systems support the improvement initiative.
  4. Embed Manage and monitor performance against the revised goals/objectives/KPI’s. Reinforce cultural change & behaviour changes through training/reward/recognition. Promote and hire those who display the required behaviour sets.

The Content (principles and questions to assess capability):-

1. Customer & Strategy Some key principles and questions to determine market capability:-

  1. Competitive position determines the business options.
    1. What is your relative market share? How big is your market and how fast is it growing?
    2. Is your profitability in line with your relative market share? Which capabilities create/reinforce your competitive advantages? What capabilities are you lagging on?
  2. Customers and profit segments are dynamic.
    1. Which are the biggest, fastest-growing and most profitable customer segments?
    2. What is your customer retention by key segment?
    3. What is your share of the competitive profit segments? How is that changing?

2. Operations Some key principles and questions to determine operational capability:-

  1. Costs and prices always decline.
    1. How does your cost experience slope compare with competitors’?
    2. What is the slope of price changes in your industry?
    3. Which of your products or services are making money (or not), and why?
  2. Simplicity gets results.
    1. How complex are your business lines, products, organisation and business processes, and what is all that costing?

3. Structure & Culture Some key principles and questions to determine capability:-

  1. Organisational alignment optimises business delivery.
    1. Are the business line strategies, operational delivery processes, structures and people in alignment?
    2. Is there dissonance in the operational flows or structural flows of communication?
  2. Organisational culture facilitates the delivery of the customer promise
    1. Does the culture support the customer promise?
    2. Is there dissonance in the organisational cultural system?

4. Management & People Some key principles and questions to determine capability:-

  1. Management, people and culture define the customer experience.
    1. Does the management/people capability match the business/market need?
    2. How do the management/people compare to the competition?
  2. Management processes and metrics manage direction & progress.
    1. Is there a robust and informed management process?
    2. Are the right set of balanced (customer, operational, people, financial) metrics being employed to manage the business?