BEST PRACTICES: Exemplary Behavior Initiatives
Our clients use this term to refer to what is known as exemplary behavior analysis -- the identification of consistently top-performing individuals or teams within one's own organization in an effort to find out why they perform so well and how to enable others to adopt their successful behavior.
Either as separate initiatives within an organization, or as a routine part of training analysis and design, identifying and disseminating the best practices of exemplary performers can be a powerful strategy for improving the average level of performance in a group or function where the current average is significantly lower than the current highest "exemplary" level of performance.
The Six Boxes Approach follows a simple process for identifying and implementing best practices. By identifying individuals or teams who consistently produce the target outputs at significantly higher levels of quality, productivity, or cost-effectiveness than others, we learn whose behavior to study in order to determine best practice behavior. Comparing the behavior of these top performers to that of average ones, we can often isolate small but important differences in how the top performers do their jobs and arrange their work environments. Having identified the most successful forms of behavior, we can then use the Six Boxes Model to enable others in the organization to adopt them.
The result of best practices or exemplary behavior analysis and design can be very significant, especially when the difference in performance results between best and average (the upside potential) is large or when there are many average performers. If learning best practices raises the average of a large group only part way up to the best levels of performance, this improvement can add up to a very substantial positive impact on results. This is yet another way that the Six Boxes Approach can significantly increase an organization's return on investments made in people.
We generally recommend best practices analysis and design as a potential project for participants in the Six Boxes Application Program, and we often find managers and leaders interested in pursuing this strategy with their teams in the Six Boxes Management Development Program. A best practices initiative can also come from discussion with senior managers in a Performance Strategy Planning Session, since it is a way to better leverage existing resources (top performers) in an organization intent on getting the best from its people.