Robert Kaplans big idea

Updated: Feb 19 2005, 05:30am hrs
Its nearly a decade and half since Robert Kaplan and David Norton co-founded the Balanced Score Card (BSC).

While traditionally the management tool has been used to assess corporate performance and is now being used by thousands of companies across the world, in recent times, its sustainability and benefit to companies have also got governments and countries interested in the concept to see if it can be used at the macro level. Dr Kaplan to FE, It is possible to assess strategy of governments and look at industrial policies. He has made a beginning in some sense where in Mexico, an attempt was made in this direction.

Well known management guru and country and corporate strategist, Michael Porter has used strategy to assess the competitiveness of countries. The application of the BSC could be a step forward in that way.

In fact, at a time when Bangalore-based Innovative Media has just tied up with Dr Kaplan and his organisation to bring BSC formally into India, its usefulness will be tested not only in its application to private sector corporates but also to the large number of public sector units, which the government may want to turn around rather than privatise for political purposes.

That will also mesh in with what the National Manufacturing Council now wants to do: prepare a national competitiveness and strategy report with specific focus on the manufacturing sector.

How can this happen in India Young Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is seen by many who has a deep passion like his father Rajiv Gandhi and family friend Sam Pitroda in the introduction of new technologies in the governance initiatives.

One suggestion: Mr Gandhi could be a channel to bring in some of these initiatives which could otherwise face political and bureaucratic barriers. Sums up Dr Kaplan, The basic shareholders of the country are its citizens and its is possible to align the processes of various government agencies. Clearly, that may be a radical and not a balanced approach.