Inspired by last year’s successful first try at a “virtual improvement day,” the Baldrige National Quality Program (BNQP) is planning two online events this July and August when interested parties can again recommend ways to better the program that guides organizations toward innovation and performance excellence.

The Baldrige program at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) collects suggestions throughout the year on opportunities for improving the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence, the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award processes and other key BNQP activities. For many years, the program held an annual “Improvement Day” at NIST’s Gaithersburg, MD, campus at which stakeholders could review, consolidate, filter, prioritize and recommend which suggestions should be implemented. In 2009, the event went virtual for the first time by expanding to three separate online discussion sessions. These Virtual Improvement Days proved so successful that they’re back for 2010.

The Baldrige program will consider all recommendations for improvement during events on July 27, 2010, and Aug. 2, 2010, from 1 - 4 p.m. Eastern time both days. A third date will be announced soon.

Anyone wishing to participate in one of the sessions should register by sending an e-mail to[email protected]. The account also may be used to send improvement suggestions prior to the virtual events.

Members of the professional social media site LinkedIn can send in suggestions by joining the Baldrige Improvement Discussion Group. Log into your LinkedIn account, select “Groups” on the pull-down search menu at the top of the home page, enter “Baldrige Improvement Discussion Group,” and when the group page comes up, ask to join. Once you have joined, click on the “Subgroup” tab and sign up for the “Improvement Day 2010” subgroup.