The intent here is to illustrate the difference between clear, or SMART (Specific, Measurable, Adjustable, Relevant, and Time-based) definitions and criteria contrasted with unclear or DUMB (ie, Dull, Ubiquitous, Myopic, and Broad) definitions and criteria.

An Unclear Business Definition
(Example of DUMB Customer ID)

“The ID of the customer”

A Clear Business Definition
(Example of SMART Customer ID)

“A twelve character code that uniquely identifies a customer for our business. The code will be displayed on all customer shipments and invoices. Customers and customer service representatives use this code to resolve shipping or invoicing issues. Finance uses this code to track customer sales performance. Marketing uses this code for determining customer segment and group performance. Sales uses this code to identify products purchases by customer.”

The code consists of the following:

  • Character One—either the letter “I” for customers internal to the company or the letter “E” for customers external to the company
  • Character Two—either the letter “U” for United States customers or the the letter “M” for multi-national customers without corporate headquarters in the United States
  • Characters Three and Four—two letter state code for the United States, Canada, and Mexico or two letter country code for other countries
  • Characters Five through Ten—system-generated numeric ID that is to unique to each customer
  • Characters Eleven and Twelve—system generated numeric ID that is unique to each customer distribution center

Let us know what you think by commenting below. For additional methodology and team-based meeting support for your change initiative, refer to “Change or Die, a Business Process Improvement Manual” for much of the support you might need.

Become Part of the Solution, Improve Your Facilitation Skills

The FAST curriculum on Professional Facilitation Skills details the responsibilities and dynamics mentioned above. Remember, nobody is smarter than everybody, so consult your FAST Facilitator Reference Manual or attend a FAST professional facilitative leadership training workshop offered around the world (see MG Rush for a current schedule — an excellent way to earn 40 PDUs from PMI, CDUs from IIBA, or CEUs).

Do not forget to order Change or Die if you’re working on a business process improvement project. It provides detailed workshop agendas and detailed tools to make your role easier and your team’s performance a lot more effective—daring you to embrace the will, wisdom, and activities that amplify a facilitative leader.

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  1. Whats up this is kind of of off topic but I was wanting to know if blogs use WYSIWYG editors
    or if you have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding experience so I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

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