Best Practice, is it the average person’s toolbox?
New management theories and approaches are always emerging. Some are based on existing theories, others break with conventional frameworks – but which of them hold up, and what can create the biggest impact for your business?
Below we have analysed trending practices, by using the most widely recognized definitions as a basis for discussing approaches and results.
By reading this article, you will gain the perspective necessary to evaluate the best ways to apply these practices, when interacting with your customers, advisors or subcontractors, in order to create the best competitive conditions for your business – and overcome the obstacles you want!
Is best practice the average person’s toolbox?
‘Best practices’ are often discussed in the context of specific industries or fields, but best practices are in fact far more varied. Best practice in for example project management, consists of experience gathered from the organizations with the most successful risk management, benefits realization, etc.
In other words, best practice is not an observation of averages across a long list of organizations but can instead be seen as a toolbox within a given field, that contains individual tools, where the content of each tool is inspired by the businesses that have demonstrated most success in the application of them.
“A method or technique that has consistently shown results superior to those achieved with other means, and that is used as a benchmark.” – BusinessDictionary.com
Best practice is a statistical term, but the individual tools are not statistical. They are adjusted as the organizations achieve better and better results within their respective areas.
From best practice to next practice, can it get any better?
New practice is assessed and measured based on an already established practice (best practice), but how do you progress even further – how do you move beyond the current practice?
“The Next practices are the processes/practices which go beyond Best Practices, and which are used to take the current status of the organization to a next level in the future.” – wiki.answers.com
When discussing Next Practice, the term ‘co-creation’ is often brought up in relation to it.
“A business strategy focusing on customer experience and interactive relationships.
Co-creation allows and encourages a more active involvement from the customer to create a value rich experience.” – BusinessDictionary.com
According to these definitions, next practice is constantly in motion. It is not a fixed, new practice, but rather a collection of tests and experiments, that create an innovative approach, revolving around customer involvement and new kinds of cooperative relationships.
The person who discovers ‘the next practice’, thereby becomes the one who defines the new ‘best practice’, but the question you have to ask is how excessive the expense will be, and how likely it is to succeed.
Game Changer, changing the game
A Game Changer means when a given business, both new and established, is brave enough to pursue a business opportunity, even if that means going against the grain and challenging the established ways of achieving success. Admittedly, this is an unconventional approach, without a clearly defined process, that is often used by the business that is willing to take a risk and/or the business that is fighting to survive. Each decade brings a dozen businesses, that have successfully realized their ideas and created definite game changers, such as Apple’s iPhone and iPad. That requires a certain amount of courage, willingness to take risks and a very good idea.
“A person or idea that transforms the accepted rules, processes, strategies and management of business functions.
Typically leads a movement of related businesses in the same direction.” – BusinessDictionary.com
Best, Next or co-creation, what should I do now?
Based on Peak Consulting Group’s mini analysis of the leading businesses Denmark’s private sector, we have learned the following:
- Best practice is still relevant in the project engine room
Best Practice plays a part in creating agility in the portfolio management and the project execution, that allows the business to grab the opportunities that present themselves, in an ever-changing world.
- There is no reason to be a 4 (on a scale from 1-5, where 5 is best in class), if the competition and the customers expect significantly less.
View maturity as a different beast above your competencies and allocate resources to the places that will be most useful for either standing up against or outmatching the competition.
- Choose the strategic practices, that are best suited for your customers, suppliers and advisors:
When looking to create new strategic initiatives with your customers, you should browse through different practices, by utilizing your collaborative relationship with your suppliers, partners and advisors.
- Make a choice and stick to it
The reason the many organizations fail is their lack of ability to anchor their approach and change the way they act. They instead move on to “the next big thing” with the aim of gaining new inspiration and energy within the organization – however, this rarely has the desired effect. The only thing certain is uncertainty
Business as usual
‘Business as usual’ is undergoing a transformation brought on by the current state of unpredictability and high economic pressure.
Businesses now have to find new ways of improving their competencies, so they are able to adapt their business and execute faster, for the purpose of adapting to the constantly changing market and requirements, in order to stay competitive.
The best practice toolbox is still just as relevant as it has always been. It is a cornerstone, that ensures the execution agility needed for a business to grab hold of the opportunities that present themselves.
The businesses, that manage to find the right combination of new practices, so they can interpret, accommodate and create a market through collaboration with customers, suppliers and advisors, will be the ones who end up winning!