PEX Award winners 2013

We have just wrapped up here in Orlando for another year. A major highlight of this years event was the Awards program, run as ever in incredible style by the PEX team and especially Amanda aka the Nanny. The BP Groups team wishes to thanks everyone who attended and Amandas colleagues at IQPC who make this work so well including Vanessa, Julie and Lucy.

It is an honor to work on the judges panel and witness the growth and impact of process transformation across so many business sectors.
Next stop for PEX is the European event in London in April – see 

Great Outside In activity and quote from PEX Orlando

PEX Orlando 2013 is rolling forward in great style.

Neat sessions this morning about leadership in process transformation.

The panel included:

  • Dellroy Birch, CIO, Fortegra Financial,
  • Michelle Boutwell, SVP, IT Strategy and Planning, Citi,
  • Sam Garfield, Vice President – Enterprise PMO, Discovery Communications,
  • Laura Truax, Sr. Manager, Enterprise Excellence Lockheed Martin Systems and Training.
What stood out for me was Michelle Boutwell from Citi who encouraged delegates to take the Outside In perspective for business performance success.

There was then a furious visit by all attendees (400+) around the vendors stands for the Demo Drive, a great way to expose everyone to the latest automated solutions.

My highlight so far today was however Erika Westbays Outside In perspective of keynotes Jim Carrolls observation “three things that we must always be thinking about in our line of work as growing the business, improving the business and transforming the business.”

Erika puts this into a day to day pragmatic reality with her observation:three things that we must always be thinking about in our line of work as growing the customer’s success, improving the customer’s success and transforming the customer’s success.”

I fully agree after all it is about getting the customer piece right BEFORE the business can succeed!

This afternoon there are track sessions on the themes Strategy, Change and Leadership / Value Creation / Sustainability / Training.

I particularly like the title “Continuous Process Improvement and Intelligent BPM” with Connie Moore of Forrester. That suggests to me there is an alternative BPM out there which isn’t smart 😉

Later are the Rewards session and cocktail party. More on that later!

Ciao for now, Steve

It is the Annual Conference at PEX Orlando :)

I will be joining this week several hundred other process professionals here in Orlando at the Hilton Bonnett Creek for the very latest networking and sharing of the best in Process transformation and Outside In. Three years ago I keynoted with this presentation which is still as relevant for all aspirant individuals and organizations seeking to step up their business performance.

If you want anymore like this let me know. If you are in Orlando this week let’s meet 🙂

Lord Nelson and Successful Customer Outcomes (SCO)

Horatio Nelson is one of the greatest heros in British history, an honor he earned by defeating Napoleon’s fleet in the 1805 Battle of Trafalgar. Horatio_Nelson.jpgHis victory at sea over the French fleet ultimately proved to be the start of the end of the Napoleon era, which finished with another famous battle at Waterloo in 1815.

So what has Lord Nelson got to do with SCO’s? To answer that question we need to understand how an  out gunned, out manned and apparently demoralized British fleet could turn the tide of war.

Battles at sea had until Nelsons leadership been conducted by Admirals and Commanders often ashore dispensing orders as if playing a game of chess. Move from here to there and engage that ship. The signals from the command were conveyed by flag wavers, strategically placed across the battle front to provide a visual instruction to ships captains.
Sea battles tended to be well planned and predictable affairs with naturally the fleet with greater resources usually victorious. And so it seemed would be the case as the two largest sea going battle fleets in the world approached a pivotal conflict.

Nelson who was more than familiar with hardship both physical from earlier war wounds  (blind in one eye with a crippled arm) and the burdensome politics of the Admiralty brought his captains together to review the battle plans…. Clearly understanding the dilemma he articulated an approach “sink the French fleet at all costs” which in retrospect seems a statement of the blindingly obvious, however tactics and strategy was the domain of the Admirals, not the captains who simply acted out orders provided by flag wavers. Asking the captains what would that involve brought forward the idea of individual ships acting ‘in the moment’ to take advantage of the slower moving, albeit more powerful French ships. If the British ships could ‘get alongside’, rather than waiting for extended orders there was a chance for victory.

And so it was that the flag wavers remained ashore and the captains, seeking to align everything they did to achieve the successful outcome “sink the French fleet” acted in unison and yet with discretion to strike boldly. The rules of the game where changed forever when the British fleet attacked the French in the dead of night. The incredulous French were taken unawares as sea battles traditionally stopped for the night because no one could see the flags….

We can encapsulate Nelsons commitment as just before the battle of Trafalgar Nelson sent a famous signal to his fleet: “England expects every man will do his duty and sink the French fleet“… Nelson’s own last words were “Thank God I have done my duty”… Because of the distance from Trafalgar to England, Nelson’s body was placed in a cask of brandy to preserve it for the trip.
So there we have it. A clear articulation of the successful outcome (think outside of the box). An understanding and actioned desire to make that happen through the technology, people and processes.

It literally changes the rules of the game – forever.

So how much flag waving goes on in your organization? Have you truly articulated the SCO and is everyone and everything aligned to achieving it?

About the Author

Steve Towers, Co-founder and Chair of BP Group (, is an expert on process and performance transformation. Steve founded the first community focused on business process management in 1992.

Steve has bases in Europe (UK), and Colorado.

On banks, customer onboarding and Outside In

Companies of different shapes and sizes face similar seismic challenges to their existing operations. Banks are a prime example of this need to shift towards Outside In thinking and practice.

In the current demanding environment, banks need to win new customers and seek – and realize – recurring revenues from new and existing customers.
Winning new business and retaining existing customers in a volatile market can be a massive challenge; however, providing an efficient, cost effective and differentiated customer service has become the key to any banks ability to not only survive, but to thrive.
A successful bank needs to tailor its service propositions to deliver sustainable margin-earning business across legacy functional and product silos.
The old industrialised approach based on selling a specific product to a segmented customer via a dedicated and discrete silo no longer meets 21st century customer needs. Fundamentally, banks now need to optimize the share of business that they win (and retain) from each customer. This in turn requires adopting a customer centric and service oriented mindset, and developing an unprecedented depth of customer insight to enhance the quality and consistency of the service provided.
However, the embedded structure, operational culture and processes of many banks mitigate against this objective. Experience shows that customers are increasingly disappointed by banks’ inability to operate effectively across silos and fail to understand specific customer needs. New capabilities are required to enable banks to take an increasingly ‘customer oriented’ view on how to serve their clients. The customer  service strategy of banks should progressively make customers lives easier, simpler and more successful.
Banks must become Outside In and see all their business operations in the context of achieving Successful Customer Outcomes. Those organizations who make customers lives easier and more successful are winning, and more importantly retaining customers trust and future business. Customers should therefore enjoy the total banking experience so they will stay with you and spend more. 
When was the last time you enjoyed a banking experience?

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Thank you once again for the truly Copernican learning experience that we had in June.  Outside In is immensely appropriate here and so far our executives like the message.
Ernst Hertzog
, Business Process Engineer | Operations, MEDICLINIC SOUTH AFRICA