Efficiency and Effectiveness in Higher Education

1. Introduction

Higher education has seen increasing pressure on funding since the Gershon Report in 2004. This has been accelerated by the new, more market-focused environment created by the current government. Responding to the new funding environment has become a key priority for all higher education establishments, something highlighted in the recommendations of the 2011 Diamond Report. These recommendations state that the way forward is through the adoption of LEAN, increasing and improving collaborative arrangements and putting the effective flow of information at the heart of transitional arrangements. This paper provides an overview of the key concepts that underpin the recommendations within the Diamond Report.

2. Integrated Improvement & LEAN

LEAN is a concept with a long-pedigree. Many people associate it with the transformation of the automotive manufacturer Toyota over the last 50 years but its history extends much further back in time. 

What Are You Assuming: Stability or Change?

Sometimes situations can be so difficult and unpleasant that we long for change - it can't come fast enough. At other times, we are perfectly happy in our circumstances and wish things would never change. But whether we regard time as our friend or foe, things inevitably change.

We all face the same reality of change, but some handle it better than others. How well we handle it has less to do with our external circumstances and more to do with what goes on inside of us - the attitudes, assumptions, and resources we bring to the circumstances we face.

Take assumptions as an example. Traditionally, the holy trinity of management has been control, organise, and plan. What assumptions lie beneath this well-trodden surface? The assumption is that we can control, organise and plan. And that we can predict what will happen in the future so we know what to control, organise, and plan. And that we will continue to have the knowledge and skills in the future to handle whatever the future brings.

Have Trainers Really Grasped the Importance of Training Transfer?


Trainers face pressure to demonstrate that training delivers the desired skills, knowledge and behaviours required to enable the organisation to improve its performance. Transfer demonstrates the effectiveness of a training programme and is important because, it is believed that there is a relationship between improving employee capability and achieving competitive advantage.

Training spend in the UK is approximately £23.5bn per year. Stakeholders want a return on investment (ROI) from the training delivered. However, the 2011 CIPD Survey found only 28% of organisations measure ROI and conduct a cost/benefit analysis.

Definitions and Meanings

A review of research offered a number of definitions regarding transfer:

Adapting Business to the Change in the Economy

Your marketing message will have to change.

Where you market will change.

The person you market to will change.

And how you market will change.

But make no mistake about it, the money is still there, it's just in someone else's bank account.

The magic is what folks are willing to pay for - even in "this economy". Folks will always find a way to pay for what they want. You may have HAD what they WANTED a few years ago, but is it what they want today?

Is Culture Change Needed In My Organisation?

Culture is seen as "the way we do things around here". There may be more technical descriptions, but this certainly sums up why culture has such a big impact on organisational performance. It is an issue MD's can struggle to get to grips with, as many of the issues that surround culture are deep rooted in history.

If an organisations is suffering from a negative culture, they may experience many of the following symptoms:

    Employees doing the bear minimum
    Staff failing to contribute ideas
    High percentage of staff using up their sick pay
    High staff turnover
    A tense and unproductive working environment
    Poor cooperation between departments

Living Life on Your Own Terms

It's just not a good use of your life to hang on. Think big, act big. Release what is not yours to carry. Don't be afraid to move on.

Give yourself permission to do this. Give yourself permission to "lighten up."

Because it is only when you lighten up that you will fly.

This something I have spoken about before and a good time to talk about it again. Because so many people on graduating high school and going on to college, or graduating college and planning for their future careers.

As a young children we depend on our parents to make the right decisions for us. As teenagers we rebel because we are beginning to want to take control of our lives and the responsibility of making the decisions for ourselves. 

3 Simple Ways to Positively and Profitably Change Your Business

I watched a sandpiper scurrying around the beach looking for something to eat. At least that's what I thought he was doing. But he used most of his time and energy to chase away other birds. If another sandpiper approached his territory, he quickly ran over to chase him off. Then another bird invaded the opposite end of his area and he was off to chase her away. Back and forth that little bird ran, spending virtually no time eating and all his energy chasing away the competition.

Do you spend most of your daily energy at work defending your familiar turf, chasing away change like this paranoid sandpiper?

If you do, you'll quickly starve to death in this economy.

Why Failure Is Not An Option

The most important secret of wealth preservation is to make peace with your fear of becoming poor. You can't control the economy. You can't control the forces that affect your business. But you can control your emotions. By making friends with fear, you will enjoy the wealth you have and make smart, wealth-building decisions.

To make friends with fear, you have to imagine yourself living a simple life, one that can be supported by a modest income, enjoying your work and the time you spend with your family and friends. Imagine that until you feel comfortable with it.

What is your idea of what wealth is?

For some people's wealth is financial. But for others, wealth can be just having friends and family they are close to. 

Career Coaching for Success in a Changing World

Change brings stress and its human nature to find comfort in patterns of consistency. The crutch of predictive repetitiveness is that it is unsustainable. We need to change or adapt in order to survive. The world is changing with more frequency as we enter the knowledge economy fueled by digital communications and technological advances. These changes create uncertainty and reinventing our knowledge, skills, and abilities on a weekly basis is more than challenging. Globalization has contributed to the mass confusion of where we fit into the picture and how we could do something substantial with our lives. There is more competition for resources than ever before in our human history.

With all this change and complication has come increased knowledge and understanding. We have acquired more worldly views and gained a new appreciation for learning as a society. Doors have opened where there were none before. New industries have evolved and newer platforms will emerge in the future. 

Changing Change

Change is uncomfortable. It's not what we're accustomed to experiencing. Typically, the process of change doesn't "feel" good. Now, sometimes it feels good to know we're doing something that's outside of our norm and for our best, but usually, we don't enjoy the product of change until we're reaping the hard-earned rewards of our work - which happens after we've endured the process of change.

People are reluctant to change - not because they don't believe there might be a better way, but because the process of getting to where they want to be - feels all too unfamiliar. So, they turn back - they go back to what they know - they return to routine.

If you've read any of my articles before, you know by now that I'm fascinated by change-management concepts. I'm intrigued by human behavior, especially as it intersects (and sometimes interferes) with our professional lives. How do we stop doing what isn't working and start doing what would help us become successful?