People attending a PEN event

Helping leaders better understand and prioritize key strengths and improvement opportunities.

The need to improve your organization’s performance has perhaps never been greater

There are early signs that the economy is tightening; customers expect more; competent workers are scarce, and competition is intensifying in many industries. But – with the complexity of organizations – where does one start? How do you know which processes to focus on? And how do you sustain the improvement over time?

The Performance Excellence Network’s primary product is a comprehensive organizational assessment that helps leaders better understand and prioritize key strengths and improvement opportunities. This assessment helps managers understand what is working well in their organizations and what needs attention. The foundation of the assessment is the Baldrige Framework, which outlines validated criteria that have been shown to produce excellent organizational results. While recognition comes with our assessments, its main focus is on organizational learning, resource optimization, and improvement in outcomes.

PEN offers three assessment options:

Performance Excellence Award

A comprehensive diagnostic learning experience.

Consultative Assessment

A prescriptive, consultative short-cut process.

First Step

The quickest, easiest way to identify and prioritize improvement opportunities.

Why Consider an Assessment?

The value of an assessment is its ability to improve performance – to improve outcomes and drive tangible organizational results. There is growing evidence of the value of systemic organizational assessments. One study showed that organizations that use Baldrige and won their state quality award (like PEN) compared to a control group show superior performance:

  • Operating profit margins of 46.8% versus 2.7%
  • Return on assets of 10.3% versus -5.5%
  • Return on equity of 18.7% versus -5.9%.

In another similar study, award winners show tremendous growth over a control group of similar organizations:

  • 58% faster growth in stock price appreciation
  • 116% faster growth in sales
  • 114% faster growth in total assets
  • 229% growth in employees.

In fact, organizations that use this process show high levels and improvement trends in a variety of indicators – financial, customer/student/patient/stakeholder, employee, and operations.

Objectives of the Assessment

The Baldrige Framework is divided into seven categories, which form an organizational system:

Baldrige Criteria Overview Diagram

PEN’s Baldrige-based organizational assessments have several goals.

  • Enhances organizational learning and prioritization of key strengths and improvement opportunities, upon which plans can be created
  • Facilitates the improvement, alignment, and integration of overall organizational effectiveness and capabilitiesAssists in the delivery of ever-improving value
  • to an organization’s customers and stakeholders
  • Facilitates organizational and personal learning
  • Monitors progress over time

The assessment evaluates processes such as leadership; strategic planning; customer and market focus; measurement, analysis, and knowledge management; workforce focus; operations; and results. The assessment evaluates organizational approaches (processes), the extent to which they are deployed, evaluated/improved, aligned, and integrated throughout the organization, and their effectiveness at driving organizational outcomes and results.

The Baldrige Framework changes every two years to represent what the highest performing organizations are doing to achieve superior outcomes. In this way, it has become an evidence-based, validated set of leadership and organizational best practices that have been shown to produce excellence organizational results.

Interested in becoming an evaluator?

“PEN sessions keep us in the solution and on the path of excellence.”

-Mark Krupski, Director Olmsted County Property Records & Licensing

ready to learn more?

Want to learn more about PEN, our events, assessments, or membership in our network?
We’d love the chance to chat and answer any questions you might have.