LMA Consulting Group’s Lisa Anderson Is a Panelist for Drucker Supply Chain Forum

March 24th, 2017

Drucker Supply ChainLisa Anderson MBA, CSCP, CLTD, known as The Manufacturing Business TransformerSM and president of LMA Consulting Group, to participate as a panelist at the Drucker Supply Chain Forum to be held on Monday, March 27, 2017 at The Peter F. Drucker Center for Supply Chain & Logistics, Claremont Colleges. Anderson, a sought after speaker on supply chain, customer service, skills gap, ERP, SIOP, and the Amazon Effect and its impact on business operations of manufacturers and distributors, will participate in the “Professional Pathways in Supply Chain” panel at the Forum.

Anderson was recognized as a top 20 supply chain influencer by SAP, is board approved in supply chain strategy, was named a top 100 supply chain blogger on SupplyChainOpz and is soon to release a new book “I’ve Been Thinking: Strategies to Make and Keep Bold Customer Promises and Profits ” based on her weekly insights of leadership, customer service, supply chain, manufacturing and process improvement tips.  Anderson has also recently earned her APICS Certificate in Logistics, Transportation and Distribution (CLTD) in addition to her APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) designation. As a panelist at the Drucker Supply Chain Forum, Anderson will share her experiences and discuss the unique challenges and broad skill set required in the field of Supply Chain Management.

“I’m excited to participate on the “Professional Pathways in Supply Chain” panel at the Drucker Supply Chain Forum.   This panel applies equally well to students and professionals as there is an unprecedented need for strong supply chain talent in the marketplace,” explains LMA Consulting President Lisa Anderson. “The end-to-end supply chain has become more complex, global and cornerstone to growth and profitability in companies; thus, top supply chain talent has become a differentiator to success.  As a former VP of Operations and Supply Chain for a mid-market manufacturer who has been consulting with diverse industries for the last 12 years, I’m looking forward to sharing what I’ve learned along the way and discussing the future of the supply chain professional.”

LMA Consulting Group helps growing companies elevate business performance while creating a customer service edge. Through a number of proven proprietary processes, LMA Consulting Group can pinpoint areas for improvement with eagle eye precision and develop the strategies to deliver results. Anderson, also known as The Manufacturing ConnectorSM, is currently working on a book entitled “The Amazon Effect” detailing a business roadmap to thriving in an ultra-competitive marketplace. A regular content contributor in topics including supply chain, ERP and SIOP, she has been interviewed for articles in publications like Industry Week, tED Magazine and the Wall Street Journal. She actively posts educational blogs three times weekly and has three newsletters, Profit through PeopleSM and “I’ve Been Thinking” and “Supply Chain Briefing”.

Join the Discussion on Supply Chain

To register for the event click here or cut and paste this link into your browser https://www.eventbrite.com/e/drucker-supply-chain-forum-tickets-32833595167. For information about Lisa Anderson, go to http://www.lma-consultinggroup.com/ or call 909.630.3943.

Duke University & CFO Global Outlook Survey Suggests Optimism

March 23rd, 2017

According to CFO, Duke University and CFO Global Business Outlook Survey suggests strong optimism! In fact, the survey’s optimism index for the quarter jumped to 69 (on a 100-point scale) which is the highest level in 14 years. This is also significantly higher than the long-run average of 60. Businesses are optimistic.

61% plan to increase their payrolls this year and 4% wage hikes are expected. Even more noteworthy is that capital spending is expected to increase by 6% vs. a median of 3% and a flat/negative spend in 2016. Are you ready?

business optimism

What Should We Consider and/or What Impacts Could Arise?

Good news abounds. However, the tricky part is that the vast majority of our clients struggle to sustain successful growth (profitable, high service levels etc.). We don’t enjoy layoffs and recessions but they can be simpler to manage. Are you ready for growth?

Our most successful clients prepare for growth. They invest in infrastructure with enough lead time to implement successfully BEFORE they must have it. This could refer to systems, technology, people, training and development, process improvement techniques, culture and change initiatives and more — of course, it depends on your business. Undoubtedly, this is easier said than done! One of these initiatives that is geared especially well to growth is SIOP (sales, inventory, operations planning). SIOP programs are focused on forecasting demand, collaborating with customers and aligning with staffing, capacity, systems and process infrastructure, training and development and so on. If you’d like to talk about preparing for growth, contact me.


The Power of Connections and the CEO Summit

March 22nd, 2017

Earlier this week, I participated in the CEO Summit hosted by the University of La Verne. I moderated a session on leveraging the supply chain for growth and profitability (see one shot of us below), and I am a Board member for the College of Business and Public Management, and this is our key event of the year. The keynote speaker, Karen Caplan, CEO of Frieda’s Specialty Produce started her speech off by noting the power of connections. She attributed her connections and networks as significant to her success. How does your network stack up?

power of connections

I can personally attest to the power of connections. When I started my business 12 years ago, I had few connections — high quality and vital but few in numbers. Thank goodness as they are the reason I’m here today — thank you Vicki, Sandi, Debra, Brenda, Mike, Dave, Paul, Liz, Keith, Bill, Jolene, Ann, Kathy and a few others. Beyond the first few years, I would have failed (as do the vast majority of small businesses) if I hadn’t valued the power of connections. Fast forward 12 years later, and I have a vast network of high-quality people from several different affiliations, clients and colleagues that seems to grow every day. In looking at my webpage, I see I have a few more updates — the Drucker School and the University of La Verne. I can attest that my success is derived from these connections.

One tip to implement this week:

No matter how few or how many connections you have currently, you should ALWAYS be thinking about seeking out a few more high-quality connections. Even if you believe you have none, it isn’t a problem. Find someone you think you could add value to from a business perspective and start a conversation. You might find that there are synergies there.

It is NOT all about the numbers; quality is more important than quantity. Take your time to develop and maintain relationships with your high-quality connections. When I first started, there is NO way I could have succeeded even if I had 1,000 connections if they were not high quality. Look for quality. And, remember, it isn’t all about you. What can you do for them?

Lastly, take time out of your day to focus on these relationships. They will not maintain themselves. I realize we are all “too busy” but we never can be “too busy” for our key relationships. Make it a priority.


Looking for more ideas to keep your supply chain connected? Access more tips and resources on my blog. And keep connected by subscribing to my newsletter and email feed of “I’ve Been Thinking…”


Do You Know What Is Important in Selecting the Right System?

March 21st, 2017
Selecting the right ERP system

Are you prepared to make a good match with ERP software suppliers? Start with understanding what your business needs are and whether the ERP software is a match.

ERP systems often fail to live up to their promise — even in the best of circumstances. It is a tough environment — software suppliers are consolidating, the smaller ones can disappear or get gobbled up in a moment’s notice, good resources are hard to find, and the list goes on. Yet there is no choice but to proactively address this topic to have a scalable business and to meet customer expectations as you get to a certain size and complexity. Thus, it is worth-while thinking about whether you are prepared in selecting the right system:

1. Do you fully understand your business requirements and specifically your critical success factors (from a company, industry and ERP functionality perspective)?

2. What safeguards do you have in place to avoid getting excited about non-essential bells and whistles that seem important at the time of selecting the right system but are not critical to your growth and profitability? Be honest!

3. Do you know what questions to ask to dig deeper into down-the-line impacts of functionality options? Overlook this step and it is likely you’ll be gravely disappointed later.

4. Do you have software and implementation cost estimates for what you can expect for your software tier? Would you know if your deal sounds “too good”?

Do you know the qualities to dig into to be assured that your implementation resources are best suited for success?


Did you like this article? Continue reading on how to become a Systems Pragmatist:

Serving Up an ACE in Your ERP Selection and Design 

Uncommon Common Sense Project Management


Manufacturers Upbeat but Worry About Skills Gap

March 15th, 2017

According to Industry Week, the Fed’s survey of the economy expressed optimism; however, it also noted that labor markets are tightening. Since I’m also embarking on refreshing my 2013 Skills Gap research report, thus far, I’ve noted the same concerns for high-skilled positions.

I hear far less conversation about lower-skilled positions when it comes to availability (instead I hear about minimum wage concerns); however, the vast majority of my clients require higher-skilled positions. In these cases, it is not always easy — or even attainable — to find the resources needed on a timely basis. What are you doing to get ahead of this curve?

skilled workers

What Should We Consider and/or What Impacts Could Arise?

As we’ve discussed previously, if nothing else, manufacturing is in the news on a daily basis. There is a buzz! And, companies are promoting when they make a decision to source in the U.S. Additionally, regardless of policy changes (taxes, regulation, border tariffs), manufacturing was already coming back to the U.S. and nearby geographies (near-sourcing) because the total cost of non-commodity products is coming into closer alignment AND customers are demanding rapid deliveries, customization and flexibility. Lastly, automation and technology are on the rise; thus, high-skilled positions are in demand!

To thrive in this new world, we must get ahead of this curve. Finding, retaining and developing top talent must become a strategic priority. There are plenty of ways to achieve ALL THREE. Focusing on 1 without the others will no longer be sufficient. Those who pursue innovation, strategic partnerships, alliances and programs will be the ones to succeed. Get your head out of the sand, get your team together and take action if you want to be one with the resources to thrive in 2020.