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Key Idea: List What Drives Your Business

Here we study the first small business to win the Malcolm Baldrige Award.  Hattie says that at Texas Nameplate priorities are put in writing and this helps everyone stay focused. More...

Key Question:


Put your goals in writing and fully understand what drives your business.

Q:  What are the key business drivers at Texas Nameplate?

A:  Customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction, process optimization, environmental consciousness, controlled growth, fair profit and external interface.

Dale considers two business drivers to be most important: Customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction. To measure it, he hired an outside firm to see what customers and employees think of Texas Nameplate.

Q:  Why doesn't Dale need to use an outside firm to measure the other five drivers?

A:  They are more objective than the two people parts of the list.  The company can set  easy-to-measure goals on the "hard parts" of business while the "soft parts" remain very difficult to quantify.

Think about it

Do you know what makes your business work?  Can you make a list?

Clip from: Texas Nameplate


Dallas, Texas: Dale Crownover took Texas Nameplate from being just another print shop to become the first small business to be given the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. You will find their nameplates are on virtually everything. They print those specialized labels that out last the item to which it is attached. And because of quality controls, this group is the international supplier to the world's largest companies.

When he went to Washington to receive the Baldrige, the other two winners, Boeing and Solar Turbines, and all DC bureaucrats listened in awe; this man talked about the essence of quality, family and this nation's charter to achieve and to always do better.

We can all learn from Dale and his people. Yet, they did not stop working at it;  and six years later, they received the award again!
You will quickly see that this is an extraordinary work force. When we first taped this episode of the show, nobody including Dale had a college degree and some employees had just received their high school diploma. Notwithstanding, here you learn how they make world-class products and reap plenty of profits.

Oh yes, today, Dale and others have earned a college degree.

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Texas Nameplate

Dale Crownover, Owner

1900 E. Ervay
Dallas, TX 75215

Visit our web site:

Office: 2144288341

Business Classification:

Year Founded:

List What Drives Your Business

HATTIE: (The Lightbulb in the Studio) Dale says at Texas Nameplate, they have seven business drivers: customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction, process optimization, environmental consciousness, controlled growth, fair profit and external interface.

Yes, Dale is working on all seven, but he insists that if they focus on customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction, the others will happen. Keep in mind this is a small company, just 57 employees and under $4 million in sales. To work on the employee satisfaction and customer satisfaction drivers, Dale regularly hires outside consultants to gather information. The employees told him in this gathering of information that they wanted more communication, so he instigated a monthly employee meeting.

Dale says at Texas Nameplate, it's not the product, it's not the equipment, it's not the technology, it's the people.

Even though Texas Nameplate has focused on doing business in Texas for 50 years, it now has a Web site and is getting inquiries from all over the world,

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