Continual Quality and Service Improvement

 

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Our Current Emphases:  Department of Defense (DoD) Acquistion Management System and Healthcare, Particularly for Military & Veterans...

Core Values

Integrity and transparency are vital to any professional relationships. There is no substitute for honesty and a willingness to be as transparent as practical in any set of circumstances. Honesty and transparency foster trust. I try to keep the commitments I make - even if sometimes it is not always clear that it is in my financial best interests to do so. I believe in delivering value to clients, teammates and partners, and reject established concepts like inflexible hourly rates or time-and-materials approaches. If a firm has a solid foundation of experience and expertise, it ought to be able to leverage that foundation in a way that lowers the cost to its clients. In helping others fashion teams suited to the needs of their customers, I try to find the very best talent for a project or undertaking. My goal is to respond to the Voice of the Customer and to continually improve quality and performance at the lowest possible cost. Daily activities should be carried out in service to clients, associates and the nation. If these things are adhered to, the outcome will be rewarding for all. Along the way, productive, enduring relationships will be forged.

Context and Perspective

Our world is in economic turmoil. This may worsen over the next decade or more. Any value proposition - public or private - must have at as its core an increase in performance and quality for a lower cost while managing risks. Some risks, positive as well as negative, are inevitable when tradeoffs are made to achieve better results for less money.

But more than economics is in play today and tomorrow. Some things are complex and complexity is growing. Just one implication of complexity's growth is: the number of stakeholders involved in a decision or initiative is multiplying. Some stakeholders may not even be readily apparent until after they have had influence. While we can debate whether major social and business issues were ever really amenable to linear thinking, today many subjects must be tackled with non-linear approaches.

Knowledge is growing exponentially and often defies management to produce the best solutions. Knowledge management efforts are producing internationally accepted Bodies of Knowledge for particular disciplines; standards and specifications; reference models and entire libraries of metrics, measures and "best practices." All of these are necessary to produce common understanding, efficiencies and economies of scale.

At the same time, increasing specialization means that these Bodies of Knowledge and other artifacts are often treated as isolated islands in public policy and business, as if they were competing (at worst) or had very little to offer one another (at best). This is not the case in my opinion.

True value is produced by specialization coupled with a determined effort to leverage interdependencies among areas of specialization. Interdisciplinary efforts crossing multiple domains (like healthcare, education and national defense) can glean the best evidence-based practices from each that can be applied to others. The results may well be greater than those produced solely by specialization in a given domain.

Information Technology is an Enabling Infrastructure

Any effort - interdisciplinary or highly specialized - must thoroughly consider how Information Technology (IT), current and prospective, will affect the results. Because IT permeates the global social fabric, it is sometimes easy to miss seeing the IT infrastructure's key implications for corporate or government decisions and programs. Whether IT matters may not be the right question to ask. A better question may be when does IT matter (and how)?

IT provides an enabling infrastructure. Because IT is infrastructure, as much as the electrical or fibre optic grid or the road or rail network, it also may be easy to overlook the implications of rapidly emerging, high-level trends as we focus on IT particulars. Digital media are quickly converging. The twentieth-century mass-market approach to digital content distribution is being eclipsed by a user-centric, information-on-demand approach (perhaps more so in Europe, Asia and Australia than the US). Virtual Worlds/Serious Gaming developments already are dramatically affecting decision making and education/training at reasonable cost. The ability to integrate and manage digital content and text is just on the horizon. Any public or private sector endeavor that does not carefully consider IT particulars and broad trends may flawed from the outset.

What Difference Does All This Make?

This company acts on the premise that trust with clients, prospective clients, partners and teammates must be cultivated assiduously. Necessary trust is only possible by adhering to the core values mentioned earlier and by striving, however difficult it may sometimes be, to really understand the organizational culture in which one's associates live.

People expect real value for less money than they would have been willing to spend a decade (or even five years) ago. Studies and analyses are fine, but results are even better when money is tight.

There is a higher probability of providing real value if rigorous, evidence-based, interdisciplinary approaches are used. These must integrate IT infrastructure considerations using architectural processes and frameworks, frameworks for IT services management and forward-looking assessments of dynamic technology applications.

All of this is an admittedly tall order. Striving for anything less will not produce solutions needed in today's or tomorrow's world.

 

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