“Why couldn’t [the Baldrige Excellence Builder] be in Spanish to make it easier for Spanish-speaking people and businesses?” asked María Díaz, who has a specific interest in helping small Spanish-speaking businesses use the Baldrige Criteria.
Díaz began her own translation, and, as a courtesy, she shared it with the Baldrige Program for public posting. A translation of the Baldrige Excellence Builder (Creador de Excelencia Baldrige: Preguntas Claves para Mejorar el Desempeño de la Organización) and Organizational Profile (Perfil Organizacional) can now be found on the Baldrige website.
“I see that each business that is involved with Spanish speakers could take benefits from this translation,” Díaz said. “For example, American companies could teach Latin-American partners what they need from them in their own language. The Baldrige Program has some terminology that sometimes is difficult to translate into Spanish to be understood. One example: we were so confused to understand what exactly the Baldrige Program was looking for regarding key business factors. [When I served as a Baldrige] examiner, [I knew that] key business factors were things very important for the business I was assessing. At the plant [where I was working], the people in charge identified monthly metrics as key business factors, and I was always confused on that until I learned by myself that what they were calling key business factors were key business indicators.”
Díaz said she learned about the Baldrige Program through Eaton Corporation where she worked as an IT manager. In 2001, she became an examiner for the company’s internal Baldrige-based program. After retiring in 2013, Díaz said she became very interested in Baldrige-based small business training in Puerto Rico, but the training was only for companies with at least 100 employees.
“At that moment, I took the decision to take care of the companies or businesses with less than 100 employees," she said. "I thought and decided that this type of business, small and medium, should take advantage of the Baldrige [resources] as well. It took me a while to define what I wanted to do, because I didn’t know how to do it. And then, thinking on my own experience, one of the bigger problems I had when I met the Baldrige Program for the first time, was that it was in English.”
Díaz echoes what most Baldrige supporters already know:
“The Baldrige [framework] is good to everyone in English or Spanish or in any other language.”
She adds, “It is a methodology to do things right, and each person who has or considers a new business wants to do things right but not always has a full guide. . . . When [your business is] organized and standardized, you will find out easily what needs to be improved, and also it will allow you to take care on how to get more business, instead [of always] troubleshooting what is going on, losing time and money.”
Spanish-speaking businesses in Puerto Rico or any other area of the United States contribute to the nation’s success, she said. “A business is a live entity, which has a structure,” adds Díaz “If you do something wrong in one side or part of [the business] . . . it will impact everything. It is what is happening or will happen if a great part of the USA—people who speak Spanish—do not know how they are impacting [the U.S. economy]; then the USA may fail to get the expected and desired success as a whole [of all of its businesses].”
Díaz says she hopes to follow her initial Baldrige translations with a free, face-to-face, Spanish seminar on Baldrige.
These Spanish translations were freely provided to the Baldrige Program by Maria Díaz to be made available on our website for any Spanish speakers interested in using the Baldrige Excellence Framework and Criteria to help their businesses or other organizations. If you have a question about the translation, please diazfonseca.ms [at] gmail.com (contact the translator) directly.
The Baldrige Excellence Framework has empowered organizations to accomplish their missions, improve results, and become more competitive. It includes the Criteria for Performance Excellence, core values and concepts, and guidelines for evaluating your processes and results.