Leveraging Management Improvement Techniques by K.J. Euske and R. Steven Player, Sloan Management Review/ Fall 1996 - Reprint#3816 Phone 412/741-1298

Distributors have historically been able to use one or two management tools at one time, but the integration of additional concepts tend to confuse current practices and are not easily accepted. This article describes the tools of the nineties and explores methods for using parts of them for profitability and productivity improvement. The article is focused on Quality-Based tools such as ISO, TQM and SPC; Time-Based tools such as Time Compression Management, Kanban, JIT; Process-Based tools such as Best Practices, Theory of Constraints, Process Mapping; Technology-Based tools such as MRPII, CAD/CAM, Information Transfer; and Employee-Based tools such as Compensation, Empowerment, Work Teams, and creating Learning Organizations; and Activity-Based tools such as Activity-Based Costing, EVA/MVA, Channel Management, and Pricing and Costing Modeling. There are ways to utilize portions of these tools without betting the farm on one system or concept. This is a very good article on utilizing and keeping management tools in perspective.

Using the Balanced Scorecard as a Strategic Management System by Robert Kaplan and David Norton, Harvard Business Review - Reprint #96107 Ph 800/545-7685

Financial measurements alone are not enough to effectively guide a company. While a great scorecard to see if we are on track, there must be more to management than seeing how well we’ve done in the past. Kaplan and Norton unveil a scorecard concept that allows you to translate your vision into four measurable perspectives; they include financial, customers, learning and growth (change), and internal business effectiveness. The process allows a manager to design scorecards and implement measurements that are easily understood by all employees.

This is a management tool that allows you to get your arms around more than one aspect of business at a time. Excellent concept.

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