2. Materials and Methods
The fulfilment of the aim of this paper is preceded by:
Analysis of research studies about the national quality awards and Business Excellence models (see Section 1
Analysis of Business Excellence core values in the analyzed excellence models/national quality awards (see Appendix A
, Table A1
, Section 3
Analysis of research studies about the national quality awards and Business Excellence models
The analysis of research studies is organized point-by-point (to discuss points about the national quality awards and Business Excellence models according to research by Talwar (2011) [10
]; Mohammad and Mann (2010) [19
]; Abbas, Mann and Campbell-Allen (2015) [20
]; Ghafoor and Mann (2018)) [21
]. The results of these findings are presented in Table 4
(these models are inputs for the comparative analysis of the secondary data on Business Excellence core values and for the identification of the Business Excellence dimensions). Methods of analysis, comparison, selection, and induction were used.
Analysis of Business Excellence core values in the analyzed excellence models/national quality awards
The analysis of Business Excellence core values in the selected excellence models/national quality awards is presented as comparative reviews of the fundamental concepts (core values) in text-by-text (to discuss all analyzed excellence models/national quality awards). The results of these findings are stated in Appendix A
, Table A1
In relation to the interpretation of the comparative analysis, it is necessary:
to determine the number of core values and concepts in the selected excellence models/national quality (see Section 3
, Table 5
to organize a large amount of information related to core values according to their relationship to groups; a suitable tool is an affinity diagram (see Section 3
, Table 6
The position characteristics—minimum, maximum, average, median, lower and upper quartile are used. By the calculation, the following Excel functions are used: MIN—Returns the smallest number in a set of values; MAX—Returns the largest value in a set of values; AVERAGE—Returns the average (arithmetic mean) of the arguments; MEDIAN—Returns the median of the given numbers. The median is the number in the middle of a set of numbers; QUARTILE—Returns the quartile of a data set (First quartile (25th percentile) and Third quartile (75th percentile)).
The Business Excellence dimensions are identified by extending the connection between the selected core values and TQM principles (Figure 1
). A suitable tool is a systematic diagram. Methods of analysis, selection, and determination were used.
This study is based on information that was gathered through an extensive literature review (research publications and research studies (documents) about the national quality awards and Business Excellence models using Internet and research databases (Web of Science, Scopus, EBSCO) and the author’s own experience (results from own research projects (project manager M.J.)—VEGA 1/0916/15 Business Excellence status assessment in relation to the corporate social responsibility concept).
Aforementioned in Section 1
were defined inputs (see Table 4
) which would be used for comparative analysis of the secondary data on Business Excellence core values in the analyzed models (see Appendix A
, Table A1
). It is helpful in identification of the Business Excellence dimensions and in understanding how countries view excellence practices.
In relation to the interpretation of the comparative analysis of selected excellence models/national quality awards, it is necessary to define the following sets of questions:
Q1: How many core values and concepts in the context of excellence models/national quality awards can be identified?
It follows from the analysis (Table 5
) that individual models are based on an average of 9 core values. The most core values (12) were identified in the Malaysia Business Excellence Framework, at least in the Swedish Quality Award (5). Overall, we identified 15 core values, of which 10 are common to at least 10 excellence models/national quality awards (Table 6
When identifying core values, we are also focused on their characteristics (we consider the fact that although some core values are named differently from one model to another, they mean the same). The characteristics of the identified core values listed in Table 6
are based on a detailed analysis of the core values of each model [22
The focus on customers and the market
The knowledge of the current and future needs of customers and market is the starting point in the search for organizational excellence. Such needs must be clear to all members of the organization. The perception of quality judged by the customer focuses on those characteristics or attributes of the product or service that add value, raise their satisfaction, determine their preferences and make them faithful to the brand. The management oriented to the satisfaction of the customers requires to be aware of the technological development, to know the offers of the competitors and to respond quickly and flexibly to their needs and expectations. The achievement of customer satisfaction is therefore fundamental to increase the competitiveness of the organization, which becomes a strategic issue.
Visionary leadership (Leading with Vision and Integrity; Leading with Vision, Inspiration and Integrity)
Excellent organizations have leaders who shape the future and make it happen, acting as role models for its values and ethics. A visionary leader creates a vision for the organization and inspires the entire organizational community to remain committed to realizing the vision. Leaders present as a role model for others to follow and take necessary actions to transform the vision into reality. They co-create the future with stakeholders and set the direction for achieving excellence. Leaders see the organization, its products, services and processes as parts of a larger whole, and work actively to improve society, the environment and the economy. Leaders utilize and develop the collective competence and diversity of the organization and its co-workers.
High performing organizations anticipate and invest for the future. Leaders are committed to responsible and sustainable business practices. Understanding and balancing these priorities provide key stakeholders and customers with confidence in the organizations’ sustainability. Excellent organizations have a positive impact on the world around them by enhancing their performance whilst simultaneously advancing the economic, environmental and social conditions within the communities they touch. They demonstrate with concrete measures their commitment with the protection of the environment, ethical behavior in its business and with the concepts of eco-efficiency and sustainable development, exceeding the simple fulfilment of the legal and regulatory requirements in force. The activities that the organization could carry out in this regard may include improvements in education, health, environment, conservation of resources, community service, development of organizational and business practices, the sharing of non-confidential information, etc.
Wellbeing and inclusion (Appreciation of people as the main strategic factor; Employees’ Learning, Participation, and Wellbeing; Valuing people)
The quality is built by people. A precondition of a successful organization are motivated co-workers who feel appreciated and respected. Everyone sees their role in the whole and has a clear mandate to contribute to the organization’s development. A successful organization values its workforce members and the other people who have a stake in the organization. Not only internal members but also external partners should be identified as important talents that will lead to the success of the organization. Engaging people’s enthusiasm, resourcefulness and participation improves organizational performance. Development and wellbeing of employees enhances their performance and working relationships and improves organizational outcomes. An organization needs a highly educated and trained workforce to adapt to changes in today’s challenging business environment. Wellbeing of employees is important since it affects their job performance and retention. The organization ensures the integration of all its personnel through the creation of a shared identity and by responding to their physical and emotional needs in the workplace, as well as in the communities in which they live.
Creativity and Innovation (Harnessing Creativity and Innovation)
Excellent organizations generate increased value and levels of performance through continual improvement and systematic innovation by harnessing the creativity of their stakeholders. In business, innovation is critical for an organization’s survival and growth product from competitors. Consumer requirements are constantly changing. In order to meet the challenges, organizations need to improve existing processes and management to realize higher efficiency and productivity. To this end, employees need to be passionate about innovation. Senior leaders should be able to guide, inspire, motivate, and encourage the entire workforce to contribute, develop, and learn to be innovative. The ability to innovate is the advantage that makes today the difference between competing and aspiring enterprises to lead, excel and reach global performance. Innovation is making meaningful changes to improve products, services, processes, operations, and business models to create new value for stakeholders. Innovation develops organizational performance into new dimensions and requires understanding of strategic opportunities and risks. Innovation should be done in all systems and processes of all departments and operational activities. Companies committed to quality seek to create an environment conducive to the development of innovation and creativity as key elements for the introduction of improvements.
Sustainable results (Management orientation to results; Sustaining Outstanding Results; Focus on results and creating value)
An organization’s performance should be measured based on the results it produces. The organization should be showing sustainable results on many fronts such as results related to customers, financial and market, people and processes. All these results would be used to gauge the extent to which the organization has progressed to achieve its vision and mission. The excellent organizations strive to achieve superior results that are sustainable, comprehensive and positive. This is a natural result of the policies, regulations and practices that are applied regularly in all sectors of the establishment. These organizations are characterized by the importance of measuring the institutional and individual performance. High performing organizations are poised for market leadership and growth. They achieve outstanding financial and customer results while meeting the interests of employees and other stakeholders. They balance short-term gains and long-term returns. By creating value for all stakeholders, the organization creates trust and contributes to the community.
Information and knowledge (Fact-based management)
Organizations depend on the measurement and analysis of performance. Such measurements should derive from business needs and strategy, and they should provide critical data and information about key processes, outputs, and results. Key processes, various types of perceived performance, competitors, and industry trends must be measured and analyzed. Organizations need a lot of data and information from various internal and external channels, and forms to manage performance. Well-selected metrics and indicators provide important guidance for an organization to perform well-aligned activities to achieve its goals. Effective use of the facts, data and knowledge leads to improved decisions. An organization often possesses huge amounts of data. In its information value-chain, data are transformed into information, then knowledge, and then wisdom. Therefore, effective information management is an overarching goal of any organization. Without this anchor activity, an organization may not run smoothly. Information is necessary to carry out day-to-day activities such as dealing with customers, suppliers, partners, and other stakeholders. It is important to have the right information available to the right people at the right time to make the right decisions. Decisions based on opinion or assumptions have a higher risk of being ill-informed decisions.
Agility and flexibility (Managing with Agility)
The rapid and flexible response, ability to change in a timely manner, in response to new demands from stakeholders and changes in context has become a key factor in a global and competitive market. Excellent organizations are widely recognized for their ability to identify and respond effectively and efficiently to opportunities and threats. Competition demands organizations to execute with consistency and respond to changes with agility. This requires flexibility in their operations to manage change and skills in assessing rewards and risks. Success in today’s ever-changing, globally competitive environment demands agility—a capacity for rapid change and flexibility.
Policy and strategy
The organization should include in the strategic planning process certain success factors such as the expectations of customers, new business opportunities and the formation of associations/alliances, technological development, attracting customers and new markets, the changing legal requirements, the expectations of the State and the community and the strategic changes made by competitors. The organization ensures the fulfilment of its vision and mission. Vision should be understood not only as a business goal of an organization, but also as a broad sense of value that includes the mission and social values of the organization and the values of the lives of its members. The organization should actualize its vision and mission by developing a well-defined strategy that takes into account the challenges and risks it faces. The strategy map should be result-oriented and based on the present and future needs and expectations of all the stakeholders as well as based on information from performance measures, research, learning, and other related external activities.
Systems thinking (Systems perspective)
Systems thinking means viewing an organization as a wholesome entity and managing all the parts of an organization as a unified whole to achieve mission and strive toward vision. Senior leaders of an organization should take steps to align the objectives of various units in the organization. The action plans of various units are integrated so that the overall objectives of the organization are achieved. Systems thinking helps senior leaders to synergize the core competencies of an organization. All people work in a system. Outcomes are improved when people work on the system and its associated processes. An organization operates as an organizational system and will view the environment in which it operates as a system. It engages people and their ideas to manage, simplify and optimize its system of processes to improve the outcomes.
Process management (Management of processes)
An organization is a network of interdependent value-adding processes, and improvement is achieved through understanding and changing these processes to improve the total system. All activity developed by the company can be defined in terms of processes, that is, the combination of human and material resources in a series of repetitive and systematic activities to obtain a product or service that meets the customer’s requirements. Success in management is based on the systematic measurement of results and the continuous introduction of improvements. Process orientation stimulates preventive work. The basic causes of problems are identified, and fact-based decisions are taken. The processes are designed to create predictable results, while there is the capacity to rapidly adjust to the changed needs of customers and stakeholders. Processes must be managed in order to search for efficiency and effectiveness in the activities, in order to add value to the organization and stakeholders.
A learning organization (Organizational learning)
Organizational learning is a systematic process, related to continuous improvement and permanent innovation of products, production processes and management processes. It produces diversity of advantages and benefits for the organization: better products and services, raising the satisfaction of citizens, customers and strategic allies, development of new business opportunities, cost reduction, response time and cycle times and increased productivity and improvement of the performance of the organization in the fulfilment of its public responsibilities.
The company seeks the development of long-term relationships with its suppliers and members of its networks, based on mutual trust and adequate integration, thereby generating improvements and added value to its customers and suppliers. Effective supplier management makes suppliers “partners” in the organization’s strategy to satisfy an ever-changing marketplace. A competitive advantage may depend on a long-term strategic relationship with a few suppliers. This may entail tenable and tangible benefits to an organization.
Ethics and transparency
Organizations should stress ethical behavior by all workforce members in all stakeholder transactions and interactions. Senior leaders should be role models of ethical behavior. The management should take the lead in ethical behavior to lead the members. The Code of Ethics is the foundation of organizational culture and values and is the basis for leading the organization in the right direction. Transparency is the foundation of diverse activities, leading to the dedication of members, and the basis of customer and various stakeholder relationships. Organizations should pay strict adherence to the principles and practices of non-discrimination of any nature, including gender, age, race, creed or eventual disabilities.
Quality is planned and designed. The organization carries out systematic activities to continuously improve the quality of its processes, products and services as well as analyze the key components of processes, including research and development, design, production and evaluation of the resulting product or service.
Q2: How can the Business Excellence dimensions be identified?
The identification of the Business Excellence dimensions depends on the analysis of core values and concepts in the selected excellence models. It was therefore preceded by:
determination of the term ‘dimension’ (see Section 1
determination of the number of core values and concepts in the selected excellence models/national quality awards (see Section 3
, Table 5
, Table 6
Explanation: It follows from the definition of the term ‘dimension’ that it is a descriptive attribute or characteristic of Business Excellence. If we perceive Business Excellence as ”a systematic application of principles and tools of the quality management in managing the organization with the objective to improve the performance of processes based on the satisfaction of customers and value for stakeholders, such as owners, management, subjects within supply-customer relationships, public service” [50
], then the fundamental principles of Business Excellence can be taken to be the basic principles of Total Quality Management (TQM) [52
]. The fundamental principles of Business Excellence are presented by the core values and concepts in the selected excellence models/national quality awards (see Table 6
). The basic principles of Total Quality Management are namely the simultaneous observation of people, processes and results [2
]. The results of this connection are stated in Table 7
As described in Table 7
, the connection between the core values and TQM principles is marked and comprises of three main elements of TQM—people, processes and results. By extending this connection, three main Business Excellence dimensions can be identified as follows:
The first dimension “Total Quality Management”
Total Quality Management is the basis of Business Excellence and covers all areas of the business. Figure 1
represents an extended view of the Business Excellence based on three main elements of TQM—people, processes and results.
The second dimension “Innovation Potential”
Innovation potential is the ability of a company to use the knowledge and experience of its employees to increase its competitiveness. It shows itself as the ability to develop or improve product and service concepts, respectively, by social or functional conceptions that add value to the customer. This is summed up by Bocken et al. (2014): “Innovations that create significant positive and/or significantly reduced negative impacts for the environment and/or society, through changes in the way the organization and its value-network create, deliver value and capture value (i.e., create economic) or change their value propositions” [54
The third dimension “Creativity”
Creativity is an important criterion for Business Excellence because it is a vital stimulus for improvement and innovation. Urban has stated: “If all companies are high-quality and low-cost, creativity will be the differentiating factor” [52
The main findings of this study are:
A core definition of Total Quality Management (TQM) describes a management approach to long-term success through customer satisfaction. In a TQM effort, all members of an organization participate in improving processes, products, services, and the culture in which they work [56
]. It becomes part of the working culture of the organization and contributes to continuous improvement [57
]. In other words, TQM implies the application of quality management principles to all aspects of a company (e.g., products, services, customers, suppliers, etc.) and their integration within the business processes [58
To guide organizations toward Total Quality Management, various models have been developed such as the European Foundation for Quality Management Excellence Model (EFQM Model) [59
]. The same opinion is found in [26
] and in [62
], it is reported that the EFQM Excellence Model has been used by managers and academics as a proxy for the implementation of Total Quality Management.
Higher performance helps companies to attain Business Excellence. As there are various ways to adopt the term “excellence” in managerial contexts, there are also many definitions [50
] (an example of a definition related to an organization is seen in the EFQM Excellence Model [63
]). However, the term “excellence” is generally associated with meanings of “extraordinarily good” or “performing outstandingly”. When something is excellent, then we can assume that it is in the state of quality, in the condition of excelling, or in the state of superiority [63
]. Thus, the achievement of business organizational excellence is at the core of TQM as the latter represents a multidimensional concept that includes numerous elements, such as: primary focus on quality, internal and external customers’ satisfaction, continuous improvement, systemic vision, robust design, shared responsibility, quality control, teamwork, statistical thinking, supplier integration, education and training, cultural change, strategic processes, etc. [64
Finally, between Total Quality Management and Business Excellence the relation exists—the achievement of Business Excellence is conditioned by respect of core principles of TQM, namely the simultaneous observation of people, processes and results.
To understand Business Excellence, it is necessary to understand the core values and concepts from which Business Excellence Models were derived [63
]. Business Excellence core values and concepts are the attributes, beliefs and/or behaviors that Business Excellence organizations exhibit. They are the foundations of Business Excellence and are embedded into the fabric of successful organizations [53
Defining core values is important to the overall success of a business; core values are what support the vision and shape the culture of an organization; they are the light guiding each financial, marketing, product, service, and employee decision and the cornerstone of identity and brand [65
]. Talwar (2009) concluded that the core values of models can be described as “business values” [9
]. Core values as the precondition for Business Excellence are reported in [66
] and it is assumed here that if core values are neglected in the policy deployment process, it will never be possible to achieve Business Excellence.
S. M. Dahlgaard-Park (2015) called the term “core values” as the critical success factors for attaining excellence. According to [63
], the critical success factors have different names and contents in the various excellence models; for example, in the European model, they are called “the fundamental concepts of excellence”; in the U.S. model, they are called “core values and concepts”. S. M. Dahlgaard-Park (2015) concluded that when assessed as qualified for getting an excellence award or other excellence recognitions, companies’ applications are checked for integrating core values and concepts into the excellence model in use [63
]. Based on the definitions of the term Critical Success Factors (CSF) [60
], including the methodology of their creation, Critical Success Factors arise from five important sources or areas that influence an organization (according to John F. Rockart) and these areas differ from each other, given that different situations lead to different Critical Success Factors [67
Finally, in the area of Business Excellence, this concept is associated with national quality awards and Business Excellence models. Core values identified in each Business Excellence model are the same for each type of business; they are the center of Business Excellence and impact on all the Business Excellence processes and results.
A dimension is a descriptive attribute or characteristic of an object. Therefore, the term ‘dimension’ cannot be replaced by terms such as ‘principle, core theme, or item’, as their meaning in the context of Business Excellence is different.
The term ‘principle’ means “a basic idea or rule that explains or controls how something happens or works” [69
The term ‘theme’ means “a subject of discourse, discussion, meditation, or composition; topic; a unifying or dominant idea, motif” [70
]; the term ‘core’ means “the basic and most important part of something” [71
The term ‘item’ means “one of several things to be considered, to do, or to choose from” [72
This fact can also be found in [26
], where the description clearly suggests that these are not Business Excellence dimensions, e.g., Porter and Tanner (2004) determined the following core themes of Business Excellence [73
Leadership (The specific leadership behaviors of setting a clear direction and values for the organization, creating customer focus, and empowering the organization and its people in the pursuit of excellence are key to all excellence approaches);
Customer focus (The voice of the customer is critical in designing the product or service ‘offer’, and in designing the processes that impact on the customer);
Strategic alignment (An excellence approach can be differentiated from many TQM-type programs, where a lack of strategic integration frequently results in bolt-on quality programs);
Organizational learning, innovation and improvement (Stimulating individual and organizational learning, innovation and improvement through the effective sharing of knowledge and information is a critical element in an excellence approach);
People focus (An organization’s success is highly dependent upon the knowledge, skills, creativity and motivation of its people. This ‘people potential’ is best harnessed through shared values supported by a culture of trust and empowerment);
Partnership development (Organizations need to develop longer-term strategic and mutually beneficial partnerships with a range of external partners, including customers, suppliers and education organizations. Successful longer-term partnerships focus on delivering sustained value for the partners);
Fact-based processes management (The focus of all excellence approaches is on designing processes to meet customer requirements, systematically managing processes on the basis of facts and improving processes on the basis of customer feedback and feedback from the process itself. Process capability is based on the ability of the organization’s processes to meet customer requirements);
Results focus (Excellence is concerned with creating value for all the key stakeholders, including customers, employees, suppliers and partners, the public and the community at large. Balancing the needs of all these key stakeholders is a critical part of developing successful strategies);
Social responsibility (Responsibility to the public, ethical behavior and good citizenship are important in an excellence approach and are critical to the longer-term interest of the organization).
According to [74
], it is reported that the Business Excellence Framework is underpinned by the Business Excellence Principles of successful organizations:
Principle 1—Clear direction and mutually agreed plans enable organizational alignment and a focus on achievement of goals.
Principle 2—Understanding what customers and other stakeholder’s value, now and in the future, enables organizational direction, strategy and action.
Principle 3—All people work in a system. Outcomes are improved when people work on the system and its associated processes.
Principle 4—Engaging people’s enthusiasm, resourcefulness and participation improves organizational performance.
Principle 5—Innovation and learning influence the agility and responsiveness of the organization.
Principle 6—Effective use of facts, data and knowledge leads to improved decisions.
Principle 7—Variation impacts predictability, ability and performance.
Principle 8—Sustainable Performance is determined by an organization’s ability to deliver value for all stakeholders in an ethically, socially and environmentally responsible manner.
Principle 9—Leaders determine the culture and value system of the organization through their decisions and behaviors.
Finally, we identified the Business Excellence dimensions (not principles, core themes, or items)—in other words, the Business Excellence characteristics that are founded on the TQM concept and its thinking.
The most common translation of sustainability into business on a corporate level is the triple bottom line, which consists of three sustainable dimensions: people, planet, and profit (Elkington, 1997) [54
]. They are explained as follows [54
People—the social dimension refers to equity for all human beings and their opportunities in gaining access to resources with regard to basic needs such as water, food, and development through improved living conditions such as health care and education.
Planet—the environmental dimension refers to the ecosystem of the Earth and to reductions of human-created footprints and ecological imbalances in terms of pollution, the ozone layer, greenhouse gases, non-biodegradable waste, deforestation, overfishing, and so on.
Profit—the profit dimension emphasizes that production of goods and services is a prerequisite to improve the living conditions globally.
The term ‘sustainability’ is demonstrated by many authors [76
]. According to Scottish Enterprise, the term ‘sustainability’ covers environmental issues, wider corporate social responsibility (CSR), the long-term continuity, and economic survival of business [77
]. According to R. B. Pojasek, sustainability is only one of several terms now being used to denote the same concept; other terms include corporate social responsibility (CSR), social responsibility, corporate citizenship, corporate responsibility, environmental sustainability, and sustainable development [76
]. The term ‘Business Excellence’ is about doing your best; excellent organizations achieve and sustain outstanding levels of performance that meet or exceed the expectations of all their stakeholders [76
What is the relationship between these aforemementioned terms? Arabia CSR Network (2016) states that the sustainability of an organization can be achieved only through excellent results in both the CSR and Business Excellence field [50
]. EFQM (2015) shares this opinion, saying that the commitment to sustainability is demonstrated by integration of CSR and Business Excellence [50
Finally, the achievement of Business Excellence is at the core of Total Quality Management [73
]. As discussed by Lascelles, Dale (1991), one level of TQM adoption is termed “Award winners” [80
]. The types of quality awards extend from international, national, regional, branch-wise and in-company quality awards. An example of an international quality award is the European Quality Award (see EFQM), which was developed in order to sustain business excellence efforts among organizations within a European context [81
]. Excellence models appear in many different forms and other authors recognized that current Business Excellence models do address sustainability [76
As Business Excellence cannot be achieved without TQM, Sustainability cannot be achieved without Business Excellence. Therefore, based on the Business Excellence dimensions defined in Section 3
, the sustainability can be characterized. The fundamental difference to Business Excellence is in the application of a long-term perspective to the needs of future stakeholders. For the purposes of this study, the long-term continuity is the dimension of sustainability, which extends the proposed Business Excellence dimensions.
In an era of dynamic markets, globalization, telecommunication and volatile stock markets, the board of directors of listed companies have grown familiar with the pressure of shareholders. Nowadays, CEOs discuss corporate responsible behavior and sustainability more often and they feel the pressure of external stakeholders. The business environment is beginning to accept that prosperity, profitability and shareholder value alone do not represent the value of the company. The companies’ ability to grow and to improve continuously is also determined by its social competences, ethical responsibility and environmental contributions. This shift of focus leads to a reorientation of the concept of Business Excellence [87
Many governments around the world have supported or initiated quality performance and excellence awards to measure the business performance of organizations applying Total Quality Management principles in different areas. Given these considerations, many organizations have shown interest in global excellence frameworks such as the Baldrige or European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) models for quality. A study conducted by the New Zealand Centre for Organisational Excellence Research reported that there are currently about 61 excellence frameworks around the world [12
]. However, according to [15
], many excellence frameworks are based on popular awards, such as the Baldrige Award, and EFQM Award (see Section 1.2
The research problem was not several national quality awards and their frameworks, but the fact that the identification of Business Excellence dimensions helps organizations to achieve sustainable excellence within the organization and in relation to the external environment. Therefore, the aim of this paper is to identify the Business Excellence dimensions, on the grounds of comparative analysis of selected NQA models, including determination of relation between Business Excellence and Sustainability. The decision to analyze the widest possible number of national quality awards and their frameworks (20 models) was in order to obtain more relevant information necessary to identification the Business Excellence dimensions.
The main findings of this study are:
the basis for achieving Business Excellence is to respect the core principles of TQM,
Business Excellence dimensions can be identified based on core values,
Business Excellence can be characterized through dimensions,
there is a relationship between the Business Excellence dimensions and the Sustainability dimensions.
The limiting factor in the number of NQA models was the possibility of obtaining detailed information about the core values that were needed for the analytical part. Future research in this field could, for example, be focused on the frameworks or initiatives that could support any company in the development of a sustainability strategy.
Aristotle stated that it is not enough to know about excellence, we must try to have and use it. In the 21st century, it is impossible to rely exclusively on financial parameters to measure, monitor, and sustain an organization’s success. Up to 75% of a company’s value can no longer be measured by standard accounting techniques. A standard accounting technique, for example, will describe how a firm prepares and presents its business income, expenses, assets, and liabilities. Further, due to competition at a global level in all spheres of business activity, organizations that want to survive and lead in an industry today must continuously improve their processes, services, and products to achieve a competitive advantage, or, in other words, its Business Excellence. Thus, in these increasingly competitive business environments, Business Excellence allows organizations to assess their competitive strengths, understand and manage their performance, develop and implement strategic plans, and, above all, find opportunities to learn [15