Performance Design Lab Bulletin – January 2009

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Hello Again,

Here’s the latest from the “Lab” . . .

Are we up to the challenge of honoring and extending Geary Rummler’s legacy as a thought leader in the performance improvement  and management field? – Over the last few months we have reflected, individually and collectively, on how we intend to respond to our founding partner and friend/father’s loss. The answer, quite simply, is to continue. The driver is the realization that a key component of the vision statement we developed with Geary has not been fulfilled:

“influence how business executives and performance improvement practitioners think about improving and sustaining organization performance and the role of human performers and information systems in both.”

There are still many executives and practitioners whose thinking we have not yet had a chance to influence. So, how do we do this? The most obvious opportunity was to finish the two books that we had been working on in earnest the last 18 months. The first of the two books was 85% complete when Geary passed away. We are pleased to say that the first book is now complete and scheduled for release this fall. The second book is expected to be completed this year and released some time in 2010.

In many ways the first book is the follow-up to “Improving Performance: Managing the White Space on the Organization Chart” that many have asked for, and also the culmination of a career of thinking about process. It’s very exciting for us to provide Geary’s latest ideas, which have yet to be heard, considered and widely applied.

Another purpose for this bulletin is “thanks”. We would like to thank all of you who shared your memories of Geary on our web site. Your words have been an inspiration to us, his colleagues and his family. For those of you who have memories you have not yet shared, we encourage you to do so.

Last, we like to offer an invitation to all of you to join us at a tribute to Geary to be hosted by ISPI in conjunction with their annual conference in Orlando, Florida. The tribute will take place at 5:00 pm on Tuesday, April 21st. At our request, the tribute is open to the public, meaning you will not be required to enroll in the conference in order to attend the tribute. Final details should be available soon and available at both the ISPI and PDL web sites. If you think you might attend, we would very much like to know, and we encourage you to email us at and let us know so we can be sure to see you there.

We have extended our Process Design & Management   methodology  to dovetail with IT development methodologies such as RUP and SDLC in addition to integrating tools for defining business requirements that foster collaboration between process designers and performer experts, both systems and human. The workshop we used to teach the methodology was already very robust, bordering on overload, before the extension so we are also changing the delivery model for the workshop to ensure participants leave with the knowledge and skills they need to apply the methodology. Last, we are re-branding the methodology and naming of the workshop to be the Rummler Process Methodology or RPM  for short. We look forward to the opportunity to share the RPM methodology and the most recent extension with you.

In addition, we have recently developed a workshop on metrics that was consistently the top scoring workshop among participants when we offered it in conjunction with BPMInstitute’s training series. The workshop is called “Metrics and Process Management” and information on the workshop can be found here .

Recent and planned publication of articles we have written that you may find of interest:

  • Gartner has published a two-part interview conducted last summer entitled “Gartner Interviews Dr. Geary Rummler, Part 1: BPM and Value Creation” and “Gartner Interviews Dr. Geary Rummler, Part 2: Process Is Here to Stay”.
  • Our most recent Performance Improvement column in BPTrends was on “A Framework for Defining and Designing the Structure of Work, Part 3”. This was the last column to carry Geary’s name. Cherie will be taking over as co-author along with Alan.
  • ISPI will reprint part 1 of our article on the “Potential Pitfalls on the Road to a Process Managed Organization” in their upcoming issue of Performance Improvement. Part 2, will appear in the summer issue.

Planned presentations at upcoming conferences include:

  • “Crossroads: How HPT and IT can Converge to Improve Organizational Performance” – Alan Ramias at the ISPI International Conference, April 20-22
    in Orlando, Florida
  • “BPM 101: “Understanding the Main Concepts of Business Process Management and Learning How  to Use Them in Light of the Current Recession” – Alan Ramias at the IQPC’s BPM Summit, April 27 in Miami, Florida.

Upcoming   Workshops

Introduction to Serious Performance  Consulting Workshop  – Our straight forward and time-proven results improvement consulting methodology, developed over 35 years will be conducted through ISPI, February 17 & 18 in Las Vegas, Nevada. You can register for this workshop through ISPI.

What  We’re  Hearing

The need to improve performance is never ending, but the drivers and appropriate responses are always changing. With a weak economy many of us will be challenged to show how we can cap or cut resources while maintaining value. We  look forward to learning how you’re responding to the challenge. Give us a call or drop us a note.


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