A group discussion today ahead of our presentations next week led to an interesting discussion on the Baldrige model and perhaps its relevance today. Some statistics we found show that the amount of profit based organisations applying for the Baldrige award has steadily decreased over the years, and this perhaps calls into question the relevance of the model. It could be argued that the declining numbers of organisations taking up the award is based on the rigid framework of the model itself. Unlike the EFQM model or Deming's theory on organisational improvement (eg. encouraging learning and empowering employees through flexible strategies), the Bladrige model is very much based around a framework of processes that an organisation is expected to follow. Whilst some of the criteria and areas are similar to other models, such as 'Leadership' and 'Strategic Planning' linking to the EFQM model for instnace, the processes of which they are applied is ver rigid and based around a flat framework. This perhaps explains its decline in popularity, especially if one considers that Deming has begun to experience a renaissance in the USA after his exploits in Japan. I thought this data offered an interesting insight into the relevance of the Baldrige award.