Kaizen and Balanced Scorecard

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Balanced scorecards, strategic planning, and their relationship to Kaizen are expounded in the second part of the Kaizen Method Guide. Balanced scorecards bring the 3R advantages to the organization, namely, doing right things, doing them right, and doing them at the right time.

It is obvious that the traditional performance metrics are not effective in the global competitive environment. Hence, new and dynamic strategic planning is required to address the issues arising from constantly changing business environments of the present times.  As such, the management and the employees should fully comprehend the necessity of rethinking in the business strategies to suit the prevailing conditions.

Balanced scorecards focus on four major business perspectives of business process, learning and growth, financial, and customer. The balanced scorecard metrics of business process assist the management in proper analyzing of the business and decide on the conformation of the products to the needs of the customers. The learning and growth perspective focuses on the training of the employees in utilization of balanced scorecards and Kaizen principles to improve the workplace performance.

It emphasizes the need for knowledge workers and correct attitudes on corporate culture. The employees are taught to learn in an interactive environment, instead of merely teaching or training them, so that their active participation is automatic.

The financial perspective of balanced scorecards uses all the available financial data to relate finance with cost-benefits and risk assessment. Financial perspective is given top priority in most of the business enterprises but balanced scorecards and Kaizen stress that this should be balanced with the other three perspectives for full benefits.

In fact, the customer perspective is given higher rating in balanced scorecards, since the business could thrive only when the customers are fully satisfied. Finally, the article points out the differences between balance scorecards and Kaizen principles and stresses the need to integrate them for optimum results.

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