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Water-Impact-Booklet1.4

The Water Impact Booklet information to benefit your organision. One website that offers an introduction is www.Knowledge-Man- agement-Online.com. II. Continuous Improvement Continuous Improvement is a commitment to be the best you can be. It is an approach to sustain an organi- sion long into the future. People who practice Continuous Improvement share some fundamental beliefs and practices. They: • Accept change as a fact of life • Learn all the time • Apply what they learn • Encourage creativity • Listen to ideas • Put resources to best use • Fix the problem – not the symptom • Believe in being the best they can be Continuous Improvement includes learning from our experiences and finding better ways to do things through innovation. A. Continuous Improvement Techniques Business publications promote many techniques for im- provement. Here are samples of some popular tech- niques: 1. European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) “For the past twenty years we have shared what works between our member organizations as a way to help them implement their strategies: a mission which is as important as ever.”[2] “EFQM is the recognized leader in promoting and supporting the implementation of Sus- tainable Excellence.”[3] 2. Total Quality Management (TQM) “TQM has focused attention on the creative potential of human beings and their ability to improve the work that they do”.[4] Dr. W. Edwards Deming developed the TQM approach. He gained fame from his work with the Japanese after World War II. His famous “14 points” ap- pear on the Activity sheet at the back of this chapter. “Total quality management (TQM) is a management philosophy that seeks to integrate all organisional func- tions (marketing, finance, design, engineering, and pro- duction, customer service, etc.) to focus on meeting customer needs and organizational objectives. TQM empowers the total organision, from the employee to the CEO, with the responsibility of ensuring Quality in their respective products and services, and Management of their processes through the appropriate process im- provement channels”.[5] 3. Reengineering “Reengineering encourages managers and employees to rethink what they do and how they do it as a means to achieve an advantage.”[6] In planning, this means that you look at what you do now to see if it is right for the future. In budgeting, you give people the resources they really need rather than spending money on things that will not make a positive difference. In reengineering, you look closely at current procedures and workflows. You document them. Then, you look closely to find bottlenecks and ways to streamline. If you have never done this, you may find a lot of ways to im- prove. One organision, looking at its procedures found this one: “Make a copy before you throw anything away.” In reengineering, you also look at things from the cus- tomer’s point of view. You may think that you give good customer service but you may be surprised at what you find if you “pretend” to be the customer: Call the main number and see what happens. Visit your own website and see what happens. Follow the steps that a customer might take at your offices and see what happens. 4. Benchmarking In Benchmarking, an organision compares itself to other organisions in its industry to find ways that it might improve its performance. Sometimes, bench- marking is not a perfect method because it is very hard to find two organisions that are exactly the same in

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