Throughout time, man has understood the basic concept of efficiency as the amount of work required to generate a desired benefit from the work. This concept can take us back to the time when man had to invest a given amount of work in preparing and maintaining a field of crops versus the benefit of the crops that were harvested. Because the field of crops would typically yield the same amount of harvest each year, man devised ways to prepare, maintain, and harvest the crops faster each year, improving his efficiency in the work required to produce the harvest. We use the same philosophy in organizations today, called process development and process improvement.

Successful organizations improve their efficiency, generally measured ...

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