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Friday, July 13, 2007

Tell Me About Six Disciplines

We get asked many times: "Tell me about Six Disciplines....."

The following is a short FAQ that provides brief answers:

Q: Who is Six Disciplines?
A: Six Disciplines is a growing national network of local business excellence centers.

Q: What is Six Disciplines?
A: Six Disciplines is a business excellence program. Although people vary in their definition of excellence, most agree that business excellence requires a never-ending pursuit in a world of increasing challenges. Therefore a business excellence program must grow an organization’s capability to execute and it must do so in an enduring way.

Q: What are your clients looking to solve?
A: Every organization’s situation is different, but challenges frequently mentioned by CEOs include:
· Accountability -- things that should get done, don’t get done
· Engagement -- people don’t seem to care as much
· Direction – focus is unclear, opportunities may be overwhelming
· Transition – a desire to “pass the torch” successfully
· Control - things “feel” out of synch
· Quality – product and service levels are diminishing
· Alignment - people aren’t on the same page
· Frustration – we should do better

We challenge company leadership to realize that their particular challenge at the moment is a symptom of a deeper need that all growing organizations have: the need to systematically improve the organization’s ability to manage their next challenge.

Q: What does Six Disciplines actually do?
A: Our program includes a holistic approach toward strategy, planning, organizing people and processes, and execution management. Simply put, Six Disciplines grows an organization’s ability to plan AND execute better.

Q: What makes the Six Disciplines program different?
A: The problem with most business improvement efforts is, for one reason or another, they don’t last. What makes Six Disciplines different is that it has been optimized to be embraced by an organization in a long-term sustainable way. We leave nothing to chance in this pursuit and believe that Six Disciplines is the first enduring business excellence program.

Q: Why are you able to do what no one else has?
A: The first reason is that we invested more than 100 man-years and $20m focused on solving this problem. The second reason is that the timing is right. Advances in separate business and technology disciplines over the past 20 years have made it possible to attack this problem in ways never-before practical.

Q: What does the Six Disciplines Program include?
A: In our field research, we learned that an enduring business excellence program must have the following four elements, (all of which are core components of the Six Disciplines Program):

  1. A repeatable Methodology to drive organization learning
  2. External Coaching for accountability
  3. A System to align the activities of every team member, every day and
  4. A Community of like-minded people to accelerate learning

Q: Who are the target customers for Six Disciplines?

A: We target private, U.S based small and mid-sized (SMB) organizations that are financially stable, have strong leadership with an open culture and have between 20 and 200 employees (knowledge workers) using computers. Ultimately, it is the CEO we’re targeting, as this is the only person who has the responsibility for the overall success of the company and can bring about the necessary commitments for change.

BOTTOMLINE: Six Disciplines is the first enduring business excellence program, optimized for execution, specifically designed for small and mid-sized businesses.

Excellence is an enduring pursuit. It requires an enduring approach. Visit us at

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