Grundfos Wins European Quality Prize
Grundfos A/S – the Danish production company of the Grundfos Group employing 3,800 people – was honoured by the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) at the EFQM Forum in Helsinki – a highly estimated conference with participation of more than 700 business managers from all over Europe.
Competing with a number of other European production companies Grundfos A/S won the special prize for "Leadership and Constancy of Purpose" – one of the fundamental principles of Business Excellence, which Grundfos has been working with since 1996. Some of the numerous advantages of the Business Excellence model are that it creates a connection between management, activities, projects and results, and that it enables the company to measure whether it is developing in the right direction.
"Leadership and constancy of purpose" is about company managers behaving in a way that gives all employees a clear idea of what they are working towards. This results in a high level of commitment and high efficiency on the part of the employees, respect in the market and structured and systematic priority and planning of all activities.
In its assessment of Grundfos A/S, EFQM among other things stresses that the mission and strategy of the company has been successfully communicated to all employees, that the managers are involved in improvement projects themselves and that they delegate responsibility to employees – e.g. via self-functioning production groups.
Lars Aagaard, Managing Director, is pleased that with this prize, Grundfos A/S has reached another important milestone: "It confirms that we are one of the very best companies in Europe, and that we are very close to our target, which is to be among to be among the best in the world, so that through continuous focus on improvement we can ensure large production in Denmark and preserve jobs in the industry", he says.
Much has changed in Grundfos' Danish production company since senior management decided to introduce Total Quality Management through a process based on whole-hearted commitment on all levels of management and involvement of all employees. Factories and departments have become better at sharing knowledge, employees make more suggestions for improvements and customers as well as employees have become increasingly satisfied.
Jens Jørgen Madsen, Group President and CEO, appreciates the great efforts made by the managers and employees in order to earn the price for the largest production company of the Group.
"Grundfos A/S is not just the largest production company of the Group, it is also the most important one, and furthermore it is an example of best practice for the other production companies of the Group. With this recognition, Grundfos A/S has proved - once again - that it leads the way for the other companies of the Group through consistent and very achievement oriented employment of Total Quality Management. A process has been started which continuously improves our ways of working together, and it is a victory for every single employee at Grundfos A/S that they have succeeded in winning this prestigious award. But what is even more important is that the effect of the efforts is now apparent through significantly improved earnings in Grundfos A/S", he says.