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Buyers Meeting Point is home to two blogs: The Point is written by BMP's Kelly Barner and a diverse group of guest contributors. MyPurchasingCenter was acquired by BMP in 2020 we now showcase their content archive on BMP.

Point Counterpoint: Has Procurement Caught the Social Media Virus?

Earlier this week, I joined Jon Hansen on Blog Talk Radio for the next installment in our series of ‘Point Counterpoint’ discussions. You can listen to it on demand here.

This month our topic was social media and how procurement is – or isn’t – incorporating it in our work. Professionally, I look at the potential of social media in two ways:


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What do procurement pros really want in their industry news coverage?

Last week, Jon Hansen and I did the second in what will be an ongoing series of ‘Point – Counterpoint’ Blog Talk Radio sessions. Here is how these sessions work: we agree on a topic in advance and then I do my darndest to disagree with Jon for 30 minutes, after which he declares us in agreement. Trust me – the conversations are as entertaining as they are informative.

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Conversation with the Author: Jonathan O'Brien on Why His Revised Editions Add but Don't Remove Information

Jonathan O’Brien, CEO at Positive Purchasing, has written a number of weighty books for procurement and supply chain professionals: Category Management in Purchasing, Negotiating for Purchasing Professionals, and Supplier Relationship Management make up the ‘big three.’ Not only has he written these books, he regularly revises them – I know because I’ve reviewed all of the originals and many of the revisions.

I write all the time (including two books of my own), and yet the sheer volume of content O’Brien has pulled together in these books makes my head spin. In fact, I once asked someone at his publisher Kogan Page if they had him locked in a room somewhere hunched over a laptop.

What that suggests to me, is that there is something about the process of writing, and his relationship to the content, that is important for him as a practitioner and thought leader. Somehow, O’Brien inexplicably maintains a successful consulting practice in addition to his writing habit.

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Would Sales Describe Your Procurement Approach as ‘Peter Price’ or ‘Valerie Value’?

Elliot Epstein, CEO of Salient Communications, has partnered with organizations such as CIPS in the past to help sales and procurement professionals better understand each other. He has also done a series of podcasts on Sales vs Procurement with Paul Rogers – a three decade procurement professional that Epstein describes as the leading procurement coach in Australia.

He talked about the podcast series as well as the sales procurement divide in a YouTube interview titled Dealing with the Rising Power of Procurement.

For my podcast on the topic, including guest audio from YouTube, visit Blog Talk Radio or Sound Cloud.

The sales vs procurement divide has always been an interesting one. Who is really in the power position? How accurate is each side’s understanding of the actions and motives of the other?

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The Suzuki Volkswagen ‘Divorce’ – What Not to Do or a Case Against Partnerships Altogether?

Suzuki and Volkswagen have finally completed their ‘divorce’ or the breakup of their 2009 partnership that was supposed to bring market, manufacturing, and technical expertise together for the benefit of both parties. This true story sadly illustrates the dark side of collaborative business relationships – and that is the fallout for all parties if and when they fail.

For my podcast on the topic, including guest audio on the story from Reuters, visit Blog Talk Radio or Sound Cloud.

As sad as the state of the relations between these two companies is today, the partnership started with high expectations on both sides. In 2010, VW purchased a 20% stake in Suzuki, worth approximately $2B US, indicating that this deal was no informal initiative.

Unfortunately, it also started with ulterior – or at least secondary motives – that may have doomed the effort from the outset.

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An Unplugged Conversation with the Authors of Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals

Last month, my co-author Jeanette and I had a conference call scheduled with Jon Hansen for an introductory conversation about our book, Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals (shameless plug here). For some reason, Jon’s Canadian location prevented him from using my conference call account and we ended up in the virtual green room of his Blog Talk Radio studio. What that means is that, for better or worse, the call was recorded. (You can listen to it here.)

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Walking the Talk: A Discussion of ISM’s Own Transformation Initiative

Rather than covering a webinar this week, I decided to focus on a recent interview conducted by Jon Hansen on the PI Window on Business Blog Talk Radio program. In April he spoke with Bill Michels, President of ADR North America, which was acquired by a for-profit arm of the Institute for Supply Management in December of 2011. The interview titled ‘The Future of ISM’ is available on demand on Blog Talk Radio.

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Procurement on YouTube: Procurement Transformation at the 2012 Olympics

In this week’s procurement YouTube video, we hear a new clip from Matthew Hattersley, Commercial Partner at Clarion, as he talks about Transformational Procurement. Clarion recently hosted a seminar at which Paul Dickinson from the Olympic Delivery Authority and head of procurement for the Olympic Park shared his experiences.


In our August 6th Weekly Procurement Update on the PI Window on Business Blog Talk Radio program we heard from Jan Matthews, the Head of Catering, Cleaning & Waste for the London Organizing Committee as she outlined the requirements for the overall catering services program.


Now that the 2012 London Olympics are done, and were by all accounts an overwhelming success, those involved are getting an opportunity to reflect on what they learned. This includes procurement, and the transformational efforts that were attempted.


According to what Paul Dickinson shared at the seminar, there are two primary reasons why attempts at procurement transformation fail:


  1. The strategy in place must be clear at the executive and end user levels and be connected by clear plans that drive the implementation of the strategy.
  2. Document supplier requirements, including outputs and timetables, and use objective, measurable milestones so all parties involved can track how the effort is progressing.

Click on the video below to view it for yourself (or click here to view it on YouTube if your browser does not support Flash) and then join the conversation here.

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