Winona Health receives state Excellence Award

based on Baldrige criteria

Pictured left to right: Brian Lassiter, President, Performance Excellence Network; Rachelle Schultz, President/CEO, Winona Health; Ken Mogren, Board Chair, Winona Health; Jennifer Burmeister, Director, Southeast Minnesota, Performance Excellence Network.

Pictured (l–r): Brian Lassiter, President, Performance Excellence Network; Rachelle Schultz, President/CEO, Winona Health; Ken Mogren, Board Chair, Winona Health; Jennifer Burmeister, Director, Southeast Minnesota, Performance Excellence Network.

The Performance Excellence Network (PEN), formerly the Minnesota Council for Quality, presented Winona Health with the 2013 Performance Excellence Award. The Award is based on the Malcolm Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence. Only two organizations in the state were recognized at this level: Winona Health and Cardinal of Minnesota.

An organization achieving the Excellence Award has undergone rigorous evaluation by independent, trained examiners focused on these areas: leadership, strategic planning, customer-focused processes, measurement systems, workforce engagement, and operations and recognizes organizations that are systematically improving results.

“This is the highest award for quality that a Minnesota organization can earn, and the Excellence Award is given out very sparingly,” said Ken Mogren, Winona Health board chair, in a memo to the Winona Health staff. “In fact, since the Performance Excellence Network was founded in 1987, the award had only been given nine times prior to this year. The board wants to express our sincere appreciation for your ongoing efforts to increase the value you bring to our community.”

The award was presented at PENworks 2014, April 14-15 at the Earle Brown Heritage Center, Brooklyn Center, Minn.

“If good is the enemy of great,” said Brian Lassiter, president of PEN, “then great is the enemy of excellent. These organizations all have one thing in common: they are not satisfied with good enough, and are continuously striving to improve outcomes for their customers, workforce, and other stakeholders.”

Rachelle Schultz, CEO of Winona Health, stated: “Excellence is never achieved by accident. We have been deliberate in our improvement efforts for more than 10 years, and are proud that the results of our efforts benefit our patients and the community. We also want to assure our community that the journey will continue. We’re not resting on this achievement.”

In addition to a presentation about Winona Health’s quality and performance excellence journey, the conference featured presentations by leaders from Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient organizations including: Larry Potterfield, CEO, MidwayUSA in Mo.; David Spong, president ret., Boeing Aerospace in Calif.; JoAnn Sternke, Superintendent, Pewaukee Public Schools in Wis.; Bryan Vaughn, president and Eric Franks, director, PRO-TEC in Ohio; Janet Wagner, CEO, Sutter Davis Hospital in Calif. and Rulon Stacey, former CEO, Poudre Valley Health System in Colo., now with Fairview Health Services in Minn.

The event also recognized the 2013 Board of Evaluators, a group of nearly 100 volunteers supporting PEN’s mission of advancing performance excellence in the region. Specially trained evaluators include CEOs, business managers and professionals, physicians and surgeons, school superintendents and school teachers from throughout the Upper Midwest.

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About Performance Excellence Network (PEN)

The Performance Excellence Network was founded in 1987 by the Minnesota Legislature and Governor Rudy Perpich, and was spun off into a private 501(c)3 nonprofit two years later. PEN advances improvement and performance excellence within organizations, individuals and communities. It helps leaders identify strengths and improvement opportunities, and it builds networks that bring information, resources, knowledge and best practices to organizations desiring to improve. The network serves members and organizations in Minnesota and the Dakotas. For more information, go to http://www.performanceexcellencenetwork.org.

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