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EFQM, Business Excellence Model, helps to apply the right tool for which the organisation is ready.   Brief History of Quality Awards : In 1950 the Deming Prize was founded in Japan, its purpose being the encouragement of Quality Management introduced by the gurus from USA. As a part of restructuring Japan after WWII (Marshall program), General Mc Arthur invited the same consultants to Japan, that supported American industry during the war. Quality statistics were a military secret at that time. In after war USA, everybody tried to forget as soon as possible anything reminding the war, including TQM. In 1980 The Baldrige Award was founded in United States. Japanese industry at that time is competing Western industry in major areas (Automotive, Consumer electronics, Photography). Baldrige Award must stimulate business excellence and thus regain the lost territory. 1985 EFQM Award; founded by major business leaders in Europe. It is meant to boost in its turn European  industry. Both Baldrige and EFQM award were further developed and gained acceptance in all areas of activity, including service, public health, education. 1988, Dutch version of EFQM founded, as is the case for most other European countries. After a few years even within the Netherlands regional award versions are developed, which happens in other countries as well. The phasing described in this text is typical for the Dutch self assessment in the pioneering days, but it is directly related to the scores of the EFQM model. Phase 1 : Product Orientation (score 200) The writer of this article is interviewing a CEO on his vision about the EFQM business excellence model. The CEO gives a convincing speech, telling the reporter about his fanatics in quality. He does, in fact, not need the model because he scores high in Leadership. All employees know he is always ready to take the lead in quality for the customer. The telephone rings  …  A customer complaining about a late order, to which the CEO had committed himself earlier. The CEO stops the interview at once, but invites the reporter to witness his response. Full of pride the CEO shows how his employees produce a rush order. Accompanied with a bottle of wine he delivers to the customer in his own Mercedes … The CEO scores phase 1 in leadership, thus limiting further improvement of the whole organization to this level. The illustrations are meant to symbolize how every employee can only cooperate when his own skills are not a limitation anymore; if they rise above the fence, the next phase can be pursued. In phase one employees are limited to their individual skills. next phase
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