When I was growing up, we had 1 television channel on our black and white TV and during the winter months, the movie “Wizard of Oz” would always run. Want to take a guess at what we watched every year? This is a great classic movie that centers around Dorothy and her little dog Toto getting back to Kansas from the land of Oz. As Dorothy sets out on her way to the Emerald City to meet the great “Wizard of Oz”, she meets a Scarecrow, a Tin Man and a Lion. They all desire something from the “great Wizard”. Their task is to simply follow the “Yellow Brick Road”. Of course, to make the movie interesting and scary, (I am not a fan of flying monkeys), the Wicked Witch tries to stop Dorothy and company from reaching the Emerald City. In the end, they all get what they desire, which they possessed all along without realizing it.
Like said, a great movie, but how does this apply to BPM?
BPM is about understanding and improving business processes with the major goal to increase customer value. After all, without customers, we probably won’t stay in business very long. If our business processes are the yellow brick road that will lead us to the Emerald City (increased customer value), we will like Dorothy in the movie, come across distractors and misdirections that will try to deter our goal, watch out for flying monkeys. The keys to our success are to stay on the yellow brick road and engage the characters we meet along the way to help us get to the Emerald City. So how do we stay on the Yellow Brick Road?
We stay on the Yellow Brick Road by following a consistent BPM methodology, one where we clearly define our business problem, plan and ensure we have the right resources engaged, document the current state, identify improvement opportunities and then design a future state that aligns with the vision and the goals of the organization. To help us stay on the Yellow Brick Road, have clearly defined internal and external facing metrics that we can monitor and adjust if we begin to go off the road. In addition, we deploy a BPM technological solution that will allow us to automate where appropriate, our business processes.
In addition, ensure you have strong management sponsorship and support to deal with distractors and misdirections that will likely occur, always beware of flying monkeys.
Don’t wander off the path, engage the characters you meet along the way and ensure you have the management sponsorship and like Dorothy, you and your organization will reach the Emerald City and eventually your final destination. You may also find, your organization possessed this ability all along and just needed to define its own Yellow Brick Road, go ask the flying monkey sitting over there.