What can we do to protect ourselves against tariffs, and what options do we have when tariffs are levied on the products or materials that I buy?
These are two questions that I have received regularly from listeners over the past couple of months, against the backdrop both of increasing trade tensions, and the ongoing uncertainty around Brexit.
And so to help answer those questions, I reached out to Bill Michels.
Bill is a recognized expert in Purchasing and Supply Chain Management and has worked in procurement across a wide spectrum of industries and countries transforming Procurement and the Supply Chain.
Until recently, Bill was the CEO and founder of Aripart Consulting after more than 23 years at ADR North America. Under his leadership, ADR North America became a leading niche specialty consulting firm and has won several recognitions and awards. Bill recently joined CIPS as Vice President of Operations - Americas, and so I also took the opportunity to ask Bill to share some of CIPS' plans for the US market.
Today I welcome onto the show Ted Olshefski. Ted is responsible for Direct Procurement at Panasonic North America.
I’ve come to know Ted well over the past 18 months or so, and I’m delighted to finally be able to welcome him to the show!
I had the opportunity to sit down with Ted in preparation for his upcoming presentation at ProcureCon Direct 2018 in San Diego on the topic of single source suppliers. Our discussion turned into an introduction to some of the considerations at play when developing risk mitigation strategies for scenarios where you have a single source supplier - either because they enjoy a monopolistic position, or because of our own business decisions.
Gordon Donovan is one of the leading thinkers in procurement on the topic of skill and behavior development, and I’m also honored to call him a good friend! In today's podcast, we continue our recent theme of procurement capability development with a focus on how we can actually scale the behaviors that we want to drive in our teams.
We start by talking more broadly about capability development, before arrowing in on capability frameworks. A good capability framework is as much of an art than a science, they can be too simplistic, but more often than not get way too complex to be actionable. In our discussion, we explore how to create an effective capability framework that is integrated into the employee assessment process and mapped into the job roles across your procurement group.
The deal is done, the contract signed, and the supplier starts supplying. Then the invoices roll in. But how much time do we invest in making sure that the supplier is invoicing the right amount?
In a world of competing priorities, I am afraid to admit that I trusted my suppliers to be billing the correct amounts. Yet, mistakes happen. In fact, as today's guest Ben Evans shared, between 40%-60% of suppliers whose invoices his firm, Auditec, review contain material billing errors. Categories with a lot of SKU's, line items, or a high volume of transactions are particular areas of focus.
In today's pod, Ben and I explore what a procurement professional can to do minimize the risk of overbilling and ensure compliance with contractual terms - from creating a culture of compliance with suppliers to the steps needed to reactively identify and recover cash after the billing has occurred.
I’m joined on the pod this week by Odelle (Brown) Bell, Managing Director of 8 Consulting. Odelle is well known within procurement across Australia and New Zealand, having previously owned and led the procurement recruiting firm Evolve People. Now at 8 Consulting, Odelle is focused on helping her clients cultivate workplaces that enable greater employee engagement - and ultimately more impactful teams.
Our conversation spanned the topic of workplace behaviors and effectiveness. Odelle is a big believer in the power of choices, and our ability to create our own paths rather than wait for others to show us the way. We discussed in detail about self-awareness and the importance of understanding both our surroundings and how we are perceived as the cornerstone of our personal growth, and of our ability to drive change. Odelle also shares what a "typical" procurement professional looks like from a behavioral perspective, and highlights the blind spots that we need to overcome if we are to have the impact we desire.
Odelle is very engaging, and I really enjoyed our conversation! Odelle provides a ton of actionable advice on how we can identify opportunities for growth - if you are prepared to be vulnerable and seek to understand your weaknesses.
This episode marks our first serious foray into understanding why people do the things they do. Our guest, Rory Sutherland, Vice Chairman of Ogilvy and founder of Ogilvy Change looks at consumer behavior, media and communications through the twin lenses of Behavioral Economics and Evolutionary Psychology.
We sought Rory out because we believe the implications of his work go well beyond how to better sell consumer products and services. His is a powerful perspective for us to incorporate into our collective work elevating the procurement function in terms of the value we create, how we create that value and how we are perceived by our stakeholders.
Rory is one of the most interesting, irreverent and generous guests I have had the pleasure of interviewing. While this episode clocks in at about one hour and thirty minutes, I was so engaged with Rory’s ideas and how he expressed them that the time just flew by. I trust you have the same experience.
Today’s guest on the pod is Jonathan O’Brien. Jonathan is the CEO and a founding member of Positive Purchasing. He has over 25 years’ experience of working with household name companies around the world to help transform procurement capability.
Jonathan works with executive teams to shape and implement procurement strategies, he also trains, coaches and develops procurement teams to perform and realize their potential.
Many listeners may recognize Jonathan as the author of a number of procurement-related books including Supplier Relationship Management: Unlocking the Hidden Value in Your Supply Base. Jonathan just published the second edition, and so I invited him on the show to talk about advanced supplier relationship management strategies.
Back in 2016, I interviewed Jimmy Ankleseria over the course of two podcasts, on the topic of strategic cost management. They were very popular at the time, and contain a number of timeless insights into how we can be more strategic about understanding and managing the input costs of the products and services we buy.
With today being a holiday week here in the US, I have combined the original two shows - which clocked in at over 2 hours - into a single 40-minute episode.
Listen in to hear Jimmy share ideas of how to build cost models for both products and services, and then his approach for partnering with your supplier to manage total cost once the contract is signed.
The quality and accessibility of master data is a critical but often overlooked pillar of all successful procurement teams. Complex and difficult to master, it's often left to the side while we pursue "easier" transformation and improvement initiatives. Technology is now opening up a new world of possibilities for converting seemingly disparate data into useable intelligence by taking new approaches - leading to more effective sourcing and category strategies.
I’m joined on the show today to discuss the mastery of your master data by Doug Paul, a GM of Sourcing at General Electric's Global Operations Group. Doug has responsibility for developing, improving & standardizing shared sourcing processes, operations & tools across all of General Electric. I've got to know Doug well over the past 12 months - as you will hear in the interview, he is passionate about the role of procurement, but also the need to continually improve, challenge our assumptions, and to take control of our own destiny.
Towards the end of our discussion, we also try out a new feature - the quickfire round. I’d love to know if you think this should become a regular feature!
Today I am joined on the show by Charlotte de Brabandt. As you will hear in the show, Charlotte was recently honored by ISM, as part of their 30 Under 30 Awards program, as the Megawatt winner, and for good reason!
In her day job, Charlotte leads Energy Procurement for Johnson & Johnson. But that only tells half the story! Charlotte is also a prolific public speaker, TEDx organizer, charity worker, and she is passionate about the intersection of procurement, technology and the future of jobs.
In our conversation, we talk about the project that led to Charlotte’s 30 Under 30 Award, I ask for advice on how to improve my own public speaking, and Charlotte shares some of her habits that allow her to fit everything in!
Today I am joined on the show by Shawn Burton. Shawn is General Counsel of Business & General Aviation and Integrated Systems at GE.
Shawn was connected to me via a former AOP guest Nick Seiersen and has recently published an article in Harvard Business Review on the virtues of plain language contracting.
While we did discuss plain language contracting, and the change and disruption underway in the legal profession – which I thought was a great way to be able to better understand and empathize with our peers in Legal – the main focus of our conversation was a home-grown platform that GE Aviation has built that allows them to be for more strategic in their contract negotiations by assigning a monetary value to each clause they negotiate.
This week on the show, the tables are turned! AOP alumni and Negotiations Ninja host Mark Raffan just interviewed me for an episode of his podcast on the topic of procurement cost savings. I enjoyed the conversation with Mark, and so we decided to simultaneously publish both on Art of Procurement and Negotiations Ninja.
In our conversation, Mark dug into that omnipresent procurement metric of cost savings. I share details of how I have seen most organizations calculate savings, and what is typically off limits. Mark also asks if there are any ways to easily save money – the low hanging fruit – that any procurement function just starting on their maturity journey should focus on.
I really enjoyed our conversation – and the challenge that comes with being on the other side of the microphone!
I spent a couple of days on the road last week at the Coupa Inspire 2018 conference in San Francisco. Inspire is an event I always try and make – to get insights into Coupa’s latest offerings, to catch up with peers, friends and clients, and to be inspired by fantastic keynote speakers which this year included Alison Levine and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
While on site, I had the opportunity to sit down and record today’s podcast with Coupa CEO, and AOP alumni, Rob Bernshteyn. Over the past couple of months, I have observed Coupa using the term “Community Intelligence” more and more, and it was a key feature of Rob’s keynote. I am very bullish on the impact that we can have in procurement by combining our collective insights end experiences - in fact, it is a key driving force behind AOP. I was interested to learn how Coupa is harnessing the opportunity that community intelligence brings, and how we as procurement professionals can apply this concept to our day to day work.
Over the course of the last 15 years, Tom Beaty has grown Insight Sourcing Group (ISG) from a one-man operation to one of the leading procurement and sourcing consulting firms. Ranked by Inc Magazine among the fastest-growing private companies in America for the last 10 years, ISG is regularly recognized as one of the nation’s best boutique consulting firms to work for.
In today’s episode, recorded live at the SIG Spring Summit, I start by asking Tom what he is seeing in the field today in terms of the key challenges that CPO’s are facing, and some of the ways that they are working to solve those challenges. We then focus on the topic of “what comes after sourcing”. We explore the startling statistic that only 60% of “addressed” spend is actually spent with the contracted supplier, and specifically, how can procurement professionals address and mitigate the risk of the savings leakage that occurs as a result.
My guest on the show today is Brian Bancroft. This is Brian’s second appearance on the show. We originally sat down back in episode 126, and I enjoyed the conversation so much that I have been eager to find an opportunity for us to record another pod.
Brian has a wealth of experience across, and outside of the procurement function, and has enjoyed roles including as Senior Director for Indirect Procurement and Shared Services, and then CPO of Asia Pacific and Africa regions for Kellogg’s, and most recently the VP of North America Indirect Procurement, and then of Direct Procurement for The Coca-Cola Company.
Since we last talked, Brian has made the move to Church and Dwight, where he is Chief Procurement Officer, embarking on another procurement transformation journey. And it is procurement transformations that are the subject of our conversation, where I ask Brian to share his learnings from executing a number of transformations around the world.
Digitization is a hot topic in procurement today, and while it will undoubtedly have a big impact on the future of our profession, it is often difficult to separate the hype from the reality. There are few organizations better positioned to help me explore this topic than HfS Research – a company I have followed for a long time – and their Chief Strategy Officer, Saurabh Gupta.
In today’s episode, Saurabh provides a “Three Horizon” roadmap. Horizon One technologies are those that must be explored and utilized today, while Horizon Three technologies are those that are more experimental. I also question Saurabh to share details of HfS’ “OneOffice” thinking, and to answer a question that has long been on my mind: how exactly an analyst research report is written.
I have long admired Vodafone as being a pioneer in both embracing and supporting supplier enabled innovation and last year Vodafone partnered with the government of Luxembourg to launch what I believe is an innovative approach to working with smaller, growing, companies that they named Tomorrow Street.
I wanted to learn more about Vodafone’s approach, and so I invited Warrick Cramer, the CEO of Tomorrow Street, and Mark Perera, the CEO of Old St Labs and a Tomorrow Street partner, to join me on the show.
On launching Tomorrow Street, Warrick shared how he had a blank piece of paper in terms of where to position it within the Vodafone organization. I really enjoyed learning why he chose to partner with procurement, and the opportunity that he sees for procurement in facilitating and delivering supplier enabled innovation.
Today’s show comes to you straight from the SIG Spring Summit last week in Washington DC, and features Danny Ertel, the founding partner at Vantage Partners. Danny’s practice focuses on helping buyers and providers of services enter into, manage, and when necessary, remediate their relationships.
Danny is a lawyer by training, and prior to founding Vantage Partners, he served in a number of high profile roles including as a law clerk to Justice Blackmun on the U.S. Supreme Court and as a Senior Researcher at the Harvard Negotiation Project. Danny has co-authored four books, including “Getting Ready to Negotiate – The Getting to Yes Workbook” with Roger Fisher, and is frequently cited in publications such as The Economist and Harvard Business Review.
I have followed Danny’s work for a long time. He first came to my attention as a thought leader and subject matter expert when while I was a Category Manager for Outsourcing & Offshoring, and I was delighted to welcome him onto the show. We focused our conversation on ways in which we can turn around difficult relationships, both with suppliers and internal stakeholders.
My guest on the show today is Walt Charles, the Chief Procurement Officer at Biogen. Walt will be well known to a number of listeners – he is a long time CPO with such illustrious companies as Johnson & Johnson’s Consumer Division, Kellogg’s, Kraft Foods, and now at Biogen.
As you will hear in the interview, Walt is very passionate about the potential power of procurement, but also believes that some of our more traditional approaches – such as the parent principle - may no longer be fit for purpose.
Walt has achieved significant results throughout his career by redesigning processes and investing in enabling tools and technology.
In our interview we talk about the “how”, with a specific focus today on tools and technology. But in the first part of the interview, I wanted to dig a little deeper into Walt’s background, and his philosophies as a leader.
Back in September 2016, Kelly Barner and I opened the mic for 40 revolutionaries to share their thoughts on the future of procurement as part of The Procurement Revolution event. One of the conversations that we enjoyed the most was with Jack Miles, the former CPO of CIBC, AIG, Computer Associates and the Secretary of State for the Florida Department of Management Services.
Our topic of conversation with Jack is just as relevant today as it was 18 months ago. We focused on the topic of mindset, and how a growth mindset is so important to be successful given the changing nature of procurement.
In today’s show, I am publishing the Q&A with Jack in its entirety.
I was delighted to welcome onto the show this week Jocelyn Stahl, the Director of Indirect Sourcing for The Hershey Company. The Hershey Company are on an ongoing transformation journey to build an Indirect Procurement organization that embodies the ideals of being a catalyst.
In our conversation, recorded live at ProcureCon, I ask Jocelyn to share the work that she and her team are doing to create a culture that respectfully challenges the status quo while maintaining a laser focus on the needs of the stakeholder – which can often come into conflict with one another! I also ask Jocelyn her perspective on Guided Buying as a strategy to not only as a tactic to manage tail spend but also as an opportunity to increase the stakeholder perception of working with procurement.
In the episode this week, I want to talk a little bit about the idea of stepping back and challenging things that we do every day, or the things that have become “generally accepted procurement thinking”. I won’t be seeking to suggest we are doing things wrong, or that things need to be fixed. No, my intent is to help us all, collectively, get our creative juices flowing! I kick things off by challenging three of our commonly held beliefs and strategies: supplier consolidation, high spend equals high importance, and that our stakeholders have seek to avoid, rather than collaborate, with procurement.
I’m joined today by Jeanette Nyden. Jeanette is a well renowned contracts and negotiations specialist, who approaches her work with a focus on building win-win, sustainable, agreements. In fact, Jeanette was a co-author with Kate Vitasek and David Frydlinger of Getting to We: Negotiating Agreements for Highly Collaborative Relationships. Today’s podcast is the first of a two-part series that I am recording with Jeanette that will deep dive into negotiating balanced deals.
Jeanette has a fascinating background – including as a trial lawyer and professional mediator – that she applies to her work. Today, we focused on the role of procurement as the facilitator, and how Jeanette’s applies her learnings as a lawyer and mediator to pre-negotiation preparation and developing the persuasive arguments that are necessary to secure complex, yet balanced, deals.
This week, I am joined by negotiation ninja Mark Raffan. Mark leads a negotiations training business – both for buyers and sales professionals – and recently launched his own podcast – Negotiations Ninja – which I highly recommend that you check out.
We had a wide-ranging discussion on all things negotiation - from negotiation strategies and approaches, to the common pitfalls that negotiators face. What was particularly insightful was hearing how a salesperson is taught to negotiate so that we could spot those tactics, and understand when they are being used, as we sit on the opposite side of the table.
I had a blast talking to Mark, and I hope you enjoy the conversation as much as I did!