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Thomas Boesen. "New Tools for a New Corporate Culture: The Budget-less Revolution." Balanced Scorecard Report, January 2002.

Borealis, Europe's leading polyolefin plastics manufacturer, replaced its traditional budget process with four core management systems, including the Balanced Scorecard. In a Q&A with The Balanced Scorecard Report, Thomas Boesen, the company's former financial controller, describes the new budgeting and planning approach. One by-product of the new program: four systems focused on the company's different needs eliminated much of the complexity, confusion, and inflexibility of the old budgeting system.

Loren Gary. "Breaking the Budget Impasse." Harvard Management Update, May 2003.

Has your company's budget process helped you do a better job of belt tightening during the current slowdown? Chances are that it hasn't. You hate the entire budget process, and you never see it pay off. So why do you keep doing it the same old way? Read what the experts have to say about not only changing your budgeting process, but whether your company should dispense with budgets entirely. The reality is that your budgeting process should be a tool for achieving strategic alignment, not for driving you insane.

Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton. "The Balanced Scorecard: Measures That Drive Performance." Harvard Business Review OnPoint Enhanced Edition, February 2000.

Kaplan and Norton developed a "balanced scorecard" performance measurement system that allows executives to view a company from several perspectives simultaneously. The scorecard includes financial measures that reveal the results of actions already taken, as well as three sets of operational measures that show customer satisfaction, internal processes, and the organization's ability to learn and improve. Creating a balanced scorecard requires translating a company's strategy and mission statement into specific goals and measures. Managers then track those measures as they work toward their goals.

Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton. "Linking Strategy to Planning and Budgeting." Balanced Scorecard Report, May 2000.

Kaplan and Norton show how traditional budgeting practices can be made more responsive to a company's rapidly changing needs. They urge managers not just to focus on the operational budget, but to pay attention to the strategy budget as well, because that's what finances the initiatives that facilitate company growth. Managers also need to avoid falling into the trap of thinking that initiatives are ends in themselves. Rather, initiatives are the means by which a company accomplishes its strategic objectives.

Charles Wardell. "High-Performance Budgeting." Harvard Management Update, January 1999.

No one looks forward to the budgeting process. It's most often viewed as an unproductive exercise that steals time from your real job. However, the budget can be a powerful instrument for helping with forecasting, planning, and employee involvement. To accomplish this, you must first reengineer the budgeting process. Then you have to rethink how you use the budget itself. The traditional budget and the budgeting process are not adequate for today's economy. Some key flaws are the inability to quantify significant metrics such as innovation and quality and the tendency to compartmentalize a company into small units, providing departments with no incentive to look at the big picture. HMU presents a new approach to budgeting by offering a 6-point checklist that shows how to turn your budgeting process, and the resulting budget, into powerful tools.

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