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One of the interesting things about consistently reading and hearing content from quality sources is that you start to notice trends. It is amazing how often the same topics arise at the same time in different places. We use this blog as a way to help you stay on top of the major themes in procurement and supply chain management.

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Posted by on in Procurement
Get on the Sustainability Train

We have done some travel via train. I don’t mean commuting trains to work or into a major city. I think the longest distance was about 400 miles. It was so relaxing and we loved it. Some day we may even do a multi-day trip with a sleeper car like in the movies!

Posted by on in Blog Picks
What are you worth?

There are many ways to value your worth. The important aspects of life that include health, family, and happiness far outweigh money. However, we do need to earn a living to support ourselves and our families.

Webinar Notes: Change Management Done Right

This week’s webinar notes are from a Sourcing Interests Group webinar on Change Management Done Right. In this webinar, two speakers from Jones Lang Lasalle (Michael Jordan, Leila Lance) and the Former Head Sustainability for KeyBank (Jessica White) will discuss how KeyBank used change management practices to develop and implement a robust sustainability program.

Sustainability and the Sound of Music

One of my favorite movies is The Sound of Music with Julie Andrews. The song Do-Re-Mi has a verse that states ‘Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start’. That could be the approach for almost any project, including getting a CSR program started.

Tips for Improving Procurement Relationships

Trust Is not easily come by and once lost, very hard to earn back. We gain trust by having good experiences with others and showing them we will do what we say we are going to do, when we said we would do it.

Book Review: Buying and Selling Information

Buying and Selling Information, by career salesperson Michael L. Gruenberg, is a guide to help buyers of information services (think subscription-based online databases). Beyond this very specific case, Gruenberg has good advice to offer buyers and sellers of any product or service. He is a salesperson who ‘gets it’ – or understands the need for buyers and sellers to work together for their mutual benefit, and for the benefit of their organizations. In his own words, “It’s all about equal footing, momentum, and success” (xviii).

 

Open Call for Predictions: What does the Future of Procurement Hold? #FutureBuy

 The best way to predict the future is to create it.

-        Peter Drucker

If we knew what the future held for procurement, we would undoubtedly change some of what we are doing today. Since is it impossible for any of us to be certain about the future, our best option is to form a vision for what we hope the future will hold and align our initiatives to that vision.

Acting on concerns for our environment

When our children were old enough to stay home without a baby sitter, they would light up the house like a beacon. We could come home and I think every light was on in the house. It was their security blanket at the time. It made us smile. From a carbon footprint perspective, it was a BIG FOOT on those evenings.

Mistakes to avoid when selecting software solutions

I have had the opportunity to be in the selection and implementation of MANY supply chain solutions. There were bumps along the way and lessons learned as well. I know some of you think this was in the dinosaur days, but before there were packages to buy, everything was home grown to custom processes and requirements. Often a pitfall was that IT would gather the requirements and disappear while they were building it. Then when it was presented to the business user, it was not really what they wanted. Everyone learned it was an iterative approach and a business lead was a critical component to a successful implementation.

Webinar Notes: Trends in Spend Management – Configuration vs Customization

 

“Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants so long as it is black.”

-- Henry Ford about the Model T Ford (My Life and Work (1922), p. 71)

This week’s featured webinar notes are from an April 16th webinar presented by ivalua with guest speakers from Spend Matters and HAVI Global Solutions. The event is available on demand here

The challenges of doing the right thing

We make choices every day in relation to our health, our family, our community and our profession. Some choices are straight forward and easy to make. Many times there are areas of grey and that brings with it a measure of ambiguity.

Internal Marketing and Supplier Relationship Management – A 1-2 Punch

This guest post is a team effort from Source One Management Services. If you would like to comment, you can do so by posting below, contacting them on Twitter @GetSavings, or contacting them directly here.

The outlets for procurement and supply chain news have no shortage of recommendations for improved business processes, new ideas, and technologies your department should implement to “modernize” or “optimize” or any number of other “-izes”. If you have read any of Source One’s contributions – here, on other publications, or on our own blog – we make just as many recommendations.

First Impressions are Important and Lasting

I recently attended a supplier presentation that was horrendous. Their product was amazing but they really blew it. The team interrupted and contradicted each other. They were unable to get their technology and projector to work. They were not prepared for Plan B. It was a terrible first impression.

Posted by on in Book Reviews
Book Review: The Big Pivot

One of the best things about having good relationships with publishers is that I end up reading and reviewing titles that range beyond procurement or spend management. And yet, there is no question that the value and competitive advantage of a well-managed supply chain runs right through the center of all business strategy books.

The benefits of doing the right thing

I had the opportunity to attend a conference where the keynote speaker was Blake Mycoskie of Toms Shoes.

Posted by on in Procurement
The Funny Thing about Auctions…

Last month, Alun Rafique from Market Dojo and I co-wrote an article for Procurement Insights about Variables in the Adoption of Auctions. A discussion about the article really picked up steam in the ISM group on LinkedIn, and one of the questions posed in response was “Someone explain to me how a Reverse Auction is fair and equitable to the supplier..."

After considering that question carefully, Market Dojo published an article that asks a question in response: “Should Suppliers Still Fear eAuctions?” The article, which you can read here, takes an interesting look at the progression of auctions from carefully managed consultant resource, to part of an ERP system, to their somewhat questionable state today – in limbo in a world where procurement is driven to create as much value as savings. A third question in this discussion might be, are auctions still relevant?

 

Posted by on in Blog Picks
Spring Cleaning in Procurement

As seasons change, we clean out our closets and freshen up the household. We may wash windows, and take on household projects like painting and planting gardens.

Webinar Notes: Top-Notch Negotiations – Anyone Can Cook!

This week’s webinar notes are from an April 9th event presented by Puridiom and Lunney Advisory group. Dr. Soheila Lunney, the president of Lunney Advisory Group and the primary presenter, addressed a number of topics related to a professional environment that increasingly emphasizes collaboration and partnership over the aggressive winner take all approach.

Dr. Lunney is also the co-author of The Procurement Game Plan with Charles Dominick of the Next Level Purchasing Association. You can read my review of the book here, as well as Part 1 and Part 2 of our interview with Dr. Lunney.

Posted by on in Procurement
Doing the right thing in business

There was a factory fire about 20 years ago in the Boston area. The owner, Aaron Feuerstein, continued to pay the workers until the factory was rebuilt. That was exceptional and unheard of in business. This remarkable story of Malden Mills was on CBS news at the time. Mr Feuerstein was referred to as a Mench – a person of integrity and honor.

Improving Public Procurement Through Improved Incentives

In a recent Buyers Meeting Point guest post Bryan Robinson asked What if the US Government Embraced Strategic Sourcing?

Cynically upon reading the title my first thought was... "Nothing."

The issue isn't FAR and it isn't the people doing the sourcing, like nearly all things it comes down to incentives.

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