Tried and died. One and done. Learning from failures.

One of the frustrations I experience is when managers or analysts share with me that their organizations tried to implement progressive management methods, and they either failed or abandoned them. A prominent example is an unsuccessful attempt to implement activity-based costing to measure and manage costs and profit levels of […]

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Charles T. Horngren (1926-2011) / accounting professor

You might think that management accounting is one of the drier and possibly boring courses in a business school curriculum, but it is a vibrant field with current debates about which methodologies to measure profitability and costs and also how to apply them in decision making. One of the key […]

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The best part of the annual budget is when it is over!

For those of you who are my regular readers, you may know that the number of my obituaries that honor special people are very few. I believe this my fourth one in the four years that I have been blogging. Jeremy Hope (1948 – 2011) was a special type of […]

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Eli Goldratt (1947 – 2011) / Theory of Constraints Guru

As some of my regular blog readers of the last four years know, I occasionally devote a blog as an obituary to someone who influenced my life. This blog will be one of those. I suspect that very few of you are familiar with Eli Goldratt. He passed away last […]

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Drivers – Not Just for Golf or Cars

What causes something else to happen? In the field of management the popular term for the “cause” is a driver. An example would be that the more sales calls that a sales person makes on prospects, the more likely a sale will be made. Last week I enjoyed a presentation […]

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A Poem to Inspire Lower Management Level Managers

With this blog I am taking a “walk down memory lane.” I provide a poem written by Clive Dupont who is now a retired banker and wrote this poem in the 1990s when he was struggling as a project manager implementing an activity-based cost management system (ABC/M) system. He was […]

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Could Beethoven Implement Analytics-based Performance Management?

Could the great classical music composer Ludwig Beethoven successfully implement analytics-based enterprise performance management (EPM) in an organization? We will get to Beethoven in a minute. First, what do I mean by analytics-based enterprise performance management? I mean all of its integrated managerial methodologies. Examples are a strategy map and […]

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Beware Misguided Accountants

Over the past few years I have discussed a paradox with Doug Hicks, President of D.T. Hicks & Co. ( www.dthicksco.com ), a performance improvement consulting firm in Farmington Hills, MI. The paradox, which continues to puzzle me, is how chief financial officers (CFOs) and controllers can be aware that […]

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2010 – Old Decade, New Decade

Let’s look back at the last ten years of applying enterprise performance management methodologies, and then speculate about their next ten years. THE PAST DECADE The beginning of this past decade witnessed more experimentation with techniques like strategy maps, balanced scorecards, product and customer profitability analysis, and driver-based budgeting. Much […]

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From Bean Counter to Bean Analyzer

I recently attended a conference in New York City hosted by CFO Conferences titled Leveraging Analytics to Turn Data into Insight. I believe it was an eye opener for many of the accountants attending. Why? Accountants take pride in their number crunching skills and their ability to analyze financial income […]

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