Whether you are seeking specific consulting services to address a specific area of need or you wish assistance with implementation of the Criteria for Performance Excellence or writing an application, WSQA can serve your needs.

Key aspects of WSQA Path to Excellence Support include:


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The Path to Performance Excellence

WSQA educates organizations in performance excellence management and administers the only state awards and recognition program for performance excellence in the Pacific Northwest. 

We partner with Pacific Northwest organizations dedicated to improving their performance. Our main areas of focus are

To accomplish this, WSQA conducts third party assessments for applicant organizations.  The assessments are conducted by examiner teams and provide detailed feedback by evaluating 1) organizational approaches (processes); 2) the extent to which the approaches are deployed, evaluated/improved, aligned and integrated throughout the organization; and 3) their effectiveness at driving organizational results. 

Focused Improvement Opportunities


  1. Development and deployment of a Mission, Vision, and Values to guide organizational decisions and create alignment.
  2. Creating a dashboard and a management review process providing integration and alignment with the strategic plan 
  3. Board development providing role clarification and moving the board from operations into policy level decisions and community leadership

Strategic Planning

  1. Strategic plan development and deployment to integrate across departments and divisions and build a management review process that uses the strategic plan to achieve results
  2. Benchmarking to define current performance and drive performance to a higher level

Customer Focus

  1. Creating a culture of customer service inside your organization
  2. Customer satisfaction surveys development, deployment, data analysis and planning and executing survey driven improvements
  3. Customer relations - listening and learning to your customers to establish customer requirements that feed into your strategic planning and action plans
  4. Social media and Web based technologies

Data Analysis

  1. How to collect, analyze, and use performance data
  2. How to display data in a meaningful way
  3. How data informs strategic thinking

Human Resource Focus

  1. Relationship management
  2. Employee focus groups and or employee satisfaction surveys
  3. Conflict Resolution – creating and sustaining a conflict competent culture
  4. Trust building
  5. Productive work
  6. Workforce Engagement/Climate Studies

Process Improvement

  1. Team problem solving tools
  2. Business process redesign and innovation management
  3. Implementing Lean, 5S and other continuous improvement methodologies

Implementing the Criteria for Performance Excellence


To start the Performance Excellence journey, learn framework, concepts, and principles of the Baldrige criteria. A 1/2 day Introduction to Performance Excellence workshop is offered on-site and throughout the year in various locations throughout the Puget Sound. This is an opportunity to send an individual or a team.


When an organization has started on the Baldrige path, it is important to understand the readiness of the organization for the transformation and where the gaps are between the current performance and Baldrige excellence. WSQA offers two options to assist organizations at this phase.

  1. A one-day in-house facilitated workshop Introduction and Assessment will provide an understanding of how much of the Baldrige criteria is currently in practice in your organization and identify the gaps. Assessment is tailored to the level of maturity and the size of your organization.
  2. Some organizations may wish to use a detailed On Line Assessment tool that can be used by the entire organization or key individuals within the organization. Upon completing the assessment, a detailed report analyzing the input received and a facilitated 1/2 day session to understand how to turn the feedback into action will be provided.

Developing Expertise

For individuals or teams in an organization that have been charged with being the lead for the Baldrige efforts, this 2 day workshop will provide an in-depth knowledge of the criteria. Using a Baldrige Case Study application, participants will understand how an organization implemented strategies and applied the criteria. These classes are offered on-site.

Application Assistance

Present your organization in its best and most accurate light by taking advantage of the Preparing and Applying for the WSQA workshop. Classes are offered throughout the year and on-site. Organizations preparing their first WSQA application may also take advantage of the Writing a WSQA Application learning collaborative which walks teams through the preparation of an application through a structured process which incorporates training, 1:1 feedback and planning sessions, and team facilitation. Organizations preparing advanced applications may want to utilize WSQA customized consulting services.

Taking Action on the Feedback

When you have received feedback from an assessment (the on-line assessment or a gap analysis) or an application feedback report, the following offerings will assist organizations in addressing those gaps and opportunities for improvement identified. Begin with the customized on-site Turning Feedback into Action workshop and then utilize the WSQA Improvement Opportunity Service. The Improvement Opportunities are listed by Baldrige category to assist in finding the intervention that will best address the needs of your organization.


Contact us for more information on Opportunities of Improvement.