In most organizations, the mission and vision have little to do with what gets done day-to-day. Even if employees know what the mission and vision are—and very few do—they fail to see how their work contributes to achieving them. Instead, departments, teams, and individuals focus on different things, on what the boss tells them is important or the company decides to target that year or the latest problem needing to be fixed. Rather than pulling together toward shared goals, they are pulled apart by shifting priorities and diverging objectives.
One of the distinguishing characteristics of Baldrige Award recipients is how well they align people, plans, and processes with the mission and vision of the organization. Every department, team, and individual not only knows what the mission and vision are, but they also understand what they must do to support them. The connection between an employee’s work and the mission and vision of his/her organization is documented and measurable.
Poudre Valley Health System, which won the Baldrige Award in 2008, calls this its “Global Path to Success.” Like other Award recipients, it uses its strategic plan and balanced scorecard to cascade its vision, mission, values, and strategic objectives throughout the organization, as shown in its award application summary:
According to PVHS, the Global Path to Success “provides a leadership system and framework for this culture, incorporating: (1) the performance management system, which links individual goals to organizational goals through each employee’s personal goal card; and (2) the Code of Conduct, Behavior Standards, and Leadership Competencies, which outline specific behaviors that support organizational values, key customer requirements, and key workforce requirements. Members of the workforce understand and demonstrate the Vision, Mission, and Values and, through their goal cards, focus on how they can help the organization provide world-class care.”
You can measure the effectiveness of this approach at producing world-class care through the results PVHS has achieved:
- One of seven U.S. hospitals named a Thomson 100 Top Hospital for superior outcomes, patient safety, and operational and financial performance—for five consecutive years
- Recognized as the nation’s number one hospital for sustained nursing excellence in 2007 and 2008 by the American Nurses Association and the National Database of Nursing Quality Indicators
- Patient satisfaction scores that surpass the national top 10%, according to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services
You will find similar outstanding results in all Baldrige Award recipients because all have aligned their people, plans, and processes with their missions and visions.
To learn more about alignment, read: