Quality Executive Board™
Accelerating Process Excellence
Adoption by Business Partners
An EPNDesk™ Session with Bruce Rideout, Vice President,
Business Performance Improvement Constellation Energy
EPNDesk Session Summary
Bruce Rideout is the Vice President, Business Performance Improvement (BPI) at Constellation Energy.
Prior to his current role, Bruce was the program leader for Constellation Generation Group’s Fleet Business
Transformation & Infrastructure Program. In both of these roles, Bruce worked to identify, shape, and
drive business transformation across a diverse business enterprise. Previously, Bruce was Vice President,
Operational Excellence with Tyco Plastics and Adhesives, and served in a variety of positions with GE Plastics
and General Chemical. Bruce is a Six Sigma Black Belt and Master Black Belt.
Overview of Constellation Energy’s Business
Performance Improvement Group
and Executive Insight
Constellation Energy, a Fortune 125 competitive energy company, is a leading provider of energy
services. The nation’s largest supplier of competitive electricity to large commercial and industrial
customers, Constellation Energy is the preferred partner of two-thirds of the Fortune 100, dedicated
Vice President, Business Performance to being the energy company that is as competitive as its customers. The nation’s largest wholesale
Improvement, Constellation Energy
power seller, Constellation Energy operates over 78 generating units including nuclear, fossil, renewable
& alternative plants capable of producing more than 8,700 megawatts of power, serving customers
throughout the United States. Constellation Energy has experienced exponential growth over the last
several years through acquisitions, new construction, and organic growth.
‘‘ Constellation Energy’s Business Performance Improvement (BPI) Group focuses on helping people
You need to ask yourself—do I have
bridge the gap from current state to future state in the quickest and most efficient way. Since the BPI
a seat at the table with my business
Group partners with individual business units, they are able to successfully provide problem solving,
partners? As drivers of process
change management and project execution leadership to key business transformation initiatives, with
excellence, we are helping to facilitate
the development of the strategy the a goal of favorably impacting the bottom line.
development of the business strategy
management process. Imperatives to Becoming a Strategic Partner
#1: Understand the Business’ Needs
• Constellation Energy Action: Get Involved Up Front in Business Planning Sessions—
The BPI Group recognized that they needed to get involved earlier in business leader
‘‘ planning sessions to inﬂuence and support them with strategy formulation. The BPI
Your business partners will always
Group spends time with business units and staff functions to assist in aligning with their
say they have 15, 50, 100 things
business strategy. Getting involved earlier with the business makes it easier to get buy-in
to do. The job of process excellence
is to help them prioritize their top- from business leaders on project strategy formulation.
tier activities. This is how you build
#2: Build Credibility with Business Partners
a healthy dialogue and establish
• Constellation Energy Action: Select a Few Key Projects to Work On, and Execute
Them Well—Instead of partnering on too many projects, the BPI Group found that
they could secure credibility by picking a few projects and successfully executing against
them. They work closely with business partners to sequence and prioritize projects that
will deliver the most strategic value to the organization. This enables them to focus
their resources on a few core projects which lead to successful execution and increased
credibility with the business.
EPNDesk Session Summary QEB1ABWBR5 | 1
Quality Executive Board Accelerating Process Excellence Adoption by Business Partners |2
Imperatives to Becoming a Strategic Partner (Continued)
#3: Pick the Right Metrics
• Constellation Energy Action: Measure Success Based on Achievement of Strategic
Business Results—The BPI Group found that many key performance indicators (KPIs) do
not monitor the linkage between project stages and the original strategy. The BPI Group is
continuing to assist business units in the development of a strategy tracker to establish this
linkage. This will allow them to keep strategic goals in sight and redirect projects, as needed,
You must ensure that strategy
in the event they shift during execution.
does not become the document
you create and then put on a
Conversation #1: What has been the biggest barrier to
shelf and bring out only once
driving business leader adoption of process excellence
a year. It needs to be a living
breathing document throughout
the project execution process.
Constellation Energy Overview
• The most common barriers to the adoption of process excellence is the lack of familiarity
among senior leadership. However, once they experience process excellence fi rst-hand and
see the results, senior leadership often tends to be among its biggest proponents.
• Rather than initially focusing on senior leadership buy-in, the BPI Group primarily targets
mid-level management to educate them on the value proposition of process excellence.
This group has the credibility to inﬂuence up and down the chain and often has a better
understanding of the business’ pain points. For these reasons, the BPI Group relies on middle
management to inﬂuence senior leadership and front-line employees on process excellence
• Another barrier the BPI Group faces is a lack of acceptance and support among certain
business units. In this case, BPI develops a clear engagement strategy for each business unit,
which helps our group focus on the businesses they can most effectively partner with, while
not wasting resources in areas where the barriers to involvement remain too high.
• Focus on a “middle-up” strategy as a way to educate the organization
on the benefits of process excellence.
• Develop a clear engagement strategy for each business unit to ensure
Conversation #2: Does the process excellence group at
Constellation Energy have a tagline that helped propagate
the process excellence movement?
Constellation Energy Overview
• Initially, the BPI Groups’ branding approach focused on training. Many employees rotated
through the process excellence group to gain key skills in project execution. Now, the BPI
Group is rebranding itself away from a training-centric function to that of a strategic business
• The BPI Group makes their project execution tools available to anyone in the organization
‘‘ We’re continuing to do everything through Constellation Energy’s online portal. This helps brand the group as a resource center
we can to attract the right talent that anyone throughout the organization can utilize for education and project execution help.
to Quality. There’s no better • The BPI Group has also explored the use of online collaborative tools, such as Wikis and
way to show value than to have
practice communities, to help increase the transfer of knowledge and stimulate conversation
people experience what we have
among the various project leaders.
to offer first hand by doing a
rotation through our group.
• Make process excellence a destination function for people in the organization
to increase the visibility and value proposition of the group.
• Enhance the process excellence community using online portals and Wiki technology
to transfer knowledge and stimulate conversations across the organization.
EPNDesk™ Session Summary QEB1ABWBR5 | 2