Tag Archive: execution

I’ve Been Thinking about Competition – Or Are They?

October 6th, 2017

I've Been Thinking

Last week, Kash Gokli (Professor of Manufacturing Practice and Director of the Engineering Clinic at Harvey Mudd) and I led our most recent Harvey Mudd Executive Roundtable on the topic of competition. We created these roundtables to bring Southern California executives together to network and discuss timely topics for organization success. We had a fascinating discussion about two general themes: How to develop a strategy to make you stand out from the crowd so you have no competition AND how to collaborate with your competition for win-win success. In today’s Amazon-impacted, competitive world, it is wise to be thinking about your closest business challengers unless you want to be left in the dust.

Harvey Mudd Executive Roundtable Attendees

One tip to implement this week:

Let’s start by making sure you know your competition. Certainly, as an executive, you’ll be aware of your competitors. The key question is most likely: Could your teams identify the key players? Which competitors are most prevalent in your industry? Now for the clincher – how well can you and your organization describe how you stack up vs. your competition? Start here and really drill down to the details.

Next, let’s move on beyond understanding the competition. Do you understand your vision and whether you are fighting it out on a weekly basis? Or do you have a strategy for how to distinguish yourselves from other businesses such that for all intents and purposes, you have no competition? It’s easier said than done but definitely worth considering.

And let’s not forget collaboration. Almost every attendee could come up with an example of how they were collaborating with a competitor for the “right” situation at the “right” time. Can you find ways to collaborate for win-win success? It might just pay to remember that your relationship network is one of your most valuable assets.

If you liked this article, read more about the importance of cultivating business relationships.

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Electric Car Investment Surges Among Big and Unexpected Names

September 29th, 2017

Supply Chain Briefing

Dyson just announced it will build a radically different electric car by 2020. What is particularly interesting is that Dyson is not who you would expect to get into electric cars. They are spending far more (one billion £) to develop the car than they are on the rest of their traditional business lines (vacuums and air filters). Obviously, they see vast potential. Similarly, Mercedes is aggressively targeting Tesla with a $1 billion electric push. Not only that, they are doing it in the U.S. – in Alabama to be specific. Electric car investments are stimulating a billion here and a billion there…

Electric Car Battery Charging

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

Whether your business has anything to do with electric cars or not, you should pay attention. It is obvious that executives see potential benefits and will back these sentiments with money. Noticing where investments are flowing can be critical as it will impact your business in one way or another. For example, if you are in Alabama, you might have a harder time finding skilled talent when Mercedes comes to town. If you need the same materials that are required for electric car batteries, you might slide down the supply totem pole. What will you do? Can you consider the R&D of your own business to get ahead of the curve? Or, at a minimum, perhaps you’ll have to incorporate a price increase into your future plans. That actually came up at a client earlier this week so I’ve seen it in action.

Stay abreast of what’s going on around your industry and your business. Think about the potential impacts. For the noteworthy and high-risk items, dig deeper. Discuss with your supply chain partners and trusted advisers. The bottom line: Don’t be surprised by critical potential impacts to your business.

 

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Emerging Technologies for Supply Chain

September 7th, 2017

There is an ever-increasing interest in emerging technologies for supply chain. When thinking of your end-to-end supply chain – from your suppliers’ suppliers, through your manufacturing and distribution operations, to your customers’ customers – you must consider technology to have any hope of achieving success.

In today’s Amazon-impacted environment, rapid information and product flow must be accompanied with low-cost and efficient supply chains to maximize the customer experience, profitable growth and cash flow. Trending technologies to consider in your strategic discussions include the following:

  1. Additive manufacturing such as 3D printing – it is no longer just for R&D. The progressive distributors are printing to order for items that used to require vast inventory and lead time.
  2. Collaborative customer technologies – programs such as vendor managed inventory, collaborative planning and innovative logistics partnerships can drive tremendous value.
  3. The internet of things is certainly taking on a life of its own – how do you plan to utilize it in your supply chain?
  4. If you support retail (and even if you don’t) and don’t have e-commerce, you have missed the boat!
  5. Robotics – there are plenty of uses for robotics throughout manufacturing and supply chain. Have you considered what might add value for your business?  Robotics could give you a 24/7 flexibility…
Emerging Technologies

Emerging technologies in supply chain from e-commerce to robotics are more important now than ever

What Emerging Technologies in Supply Chain Mean To You

Staying on top of emerging and/or trending supply chain technologies is imperative in order to succeed in today’s Amazon-impacted world. Don’t get carried away with the latest fads. Instead, take a step back and think strategically about what will support your business today, tomorrow and five years from now. Selectively integrate the appropriate technologies to accelerate your growth and success.

 

Did you like this article? Read on about tech in supply chain

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SIOP – How Collaboration & Judgment Can Achieve Wonders

August 18th, 2017

I've Been Thinking

Earlier this week, I spoke to APICS Ventura County on the topic of SIOP (Sales, Inventory & Operations Planning). It was a great conversation because it was really interactive, with probing questions on not just the theory and concepts but how to “make it work.” Talking more about the secret recipe to achieving results. What became apparent during the discussion is that what we do truly boils down to much, much more than aligning demand with supply or any of the technical aspects of SIOP. Success results from collaboration and common sense with a dash of judgment thrown in at the right time.

Then, later this week, I was with a client who pondered something similar about a completely different topic – how do we “make this happen”? Again, technical concepts are important to start on the right page and to think through the best design or solution. But without collaboration, common sense and judgment, nothing happens!

One tip to implement this week: 

Try hard not to get buried in technical concepts. Do you know anyone that hides behind massive spreadsheets or complex processes? Or, do you find yourself getting carried away with a cool new technology (regardless of the importance to results)? Admit it – we all do!

Instead, success comes by remembering common sense. What do you really need to do to get everyone in the loop? As issues and potential roadblocks arise, think about what makes sense. Forget about the complex formulas and overload of data analysis. Collaborate with your colleagues (not one single person can achieve as much two or more people collaborating and trading ideas) and apply a healthy dose of judgment. Results will follow.

 

 

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Supply Chain Expert Lisa Anderson Shares Big Picture Perspectives for Profit Opportunities

August 15th, 2017

“I’ve Been Thinking” Shares 101 Universal Business Lessons Learned

CLAREMONT, Calif., Aug. 15, 2017 – Lisa Anderson, MBA, CSCP, CLTD, president of LMA Consulting and a well-known leader in supply chain innovation and transformation has gathered her “lessons learned” blog and newsletter commentaries into a new book called I’ve Been Thinking: Turning Everyday Interactions into Profitable Opportunities which is an inspiring collection of 101 strategies for creating bold customer promises and profits. “I’ve Been Thinking” connects the power of observation, the value of collaboration and the application of practical solutions to keep the customer at the pivot-point of all company decisions.

“Businesses retain my services to uncover growth and profit opportunities and to overcome disruptors to the business. What I have found is that no matter the size of firm, the specific industry or issue at hand, it all comes down to the customer,” she said. Ms. Anderson’s practice focuses on aligning the customers’ needs with the optimal strategies, resources and systems infrastructure to maximize the customer experience, cash flow and profit. When connecting the dots within an organization, universal learnings become apparent. I’ve Been Thinking includes perspectives ranging from customer service, team members and innovation to leadership, preparation and risk. Topics include:

  • Shangri-La: The Best Hotel Service Bar None
  • Innovation Does Not Require New
  • The Value of Simplification
  • No Risk, No Reward

“The book was a natural for me. I learn lessons every day from client experiences. Most are uncommon common sense because we tend to make things more complicated than they are. And, they are universal. I’ve Been Thinking can be valuable to all business leaders – not just manufacturers and distributors. After all, customer expectations are high in every business segment and increasing every day,” Ms. Anderson said.

I’ve Been Thinking can be a valuable resource for executives, middle managers and young professionals interested in learning from a pro. The book is available as a paperback and digitally through the LMA Consulting website, Amazon and through iTunes.

About LMA Consulting Group – Lisa Anderson, MBA, CSCP, CLTD

Lisa Anderson is the founder and president of LMA Consulting Group, Inc., a consulting firm that helps manufacturers and distributors innovate, elevate and transform their end-to-end supply chain to align with customer demand. Ms. Anderson has been named a Top 50 ERP Influencer by Washington-Frank and ranked in the top 46 most influential in Supply Chain by SAP. She is a regular content contributor on topics including supply chain, ERP and SIOP and is regularly interviewed and quoted by publications such as Industry Week, tED magazine and the Wall Street Journal. For more information or to sign up for her Profit Through PeopleTM Newsletter, visit LMA-ConsultingGroup.com

Media Contact
Kathleen McEntee  | 760-262–4080 | KMcEntee@KMcEnteeAssoc.com