Tag Archive: strategy

Forecasting: How Far Should You Look into the Future?

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Whether setting strategy or designing a SIOP (sales, inventory and operations planning) process, one of the most important questions to consider in forecasting is how far into the future will you look? And why? As we think about whether the answer should be 1 month, 1 quarter or 1 year, check your thinking. When assessing the future it is important to think through the elements that may impact your forecast. 10 Questions to Ask When Forecasting and Designing SIOP 1. Do you have customer contracts in your business/ industry? If so, how far out do they go? 2. Regardless of the…
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Carmel and Strategic Thinking

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Earlier this week, I went to Carmel, California for a strategy session. While there, I went to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and saw the California beauty after a winter season of a lot of rain (see the picture below for one of the fabulous views). Do you take time out of your busy schedule to think about the future? It helps to get away (even if you just leave the office for the day) to empty your mind for strategic thinking. Have you been able to do that lately? One tip to implement this week: If you are a leader,…
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The Value of Implementation

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Strategy and plans do not fail in formulation; they fail in implementation.  Time and time again, my clients prove this statement. Although I am an expert in helping clients select the best ERP system to meet their objectives (and have developed a proprietary process for just this process – ACE), system implementations go awry during implementation. I also happen to be an expert at significant change initiatives in complex organizations (whether merger and acquisitions or culture change) – undoubtedly, they go off the rails during implementation; not formulation.  Thus, it is quite critical to consider the value of implementation. Because…
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Should Supply Chain be a Strategic Function?

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Only if you want to ensure results! My view of supply chain is from your suppliers’ supplier through your manufacturing processes (internal and external) to your customers’ customers. Thus, very little is not impacted by it. How could you not include this critical piece in your strategic thinking? The good news is that I’ve seen a continual evolution of the last several years where it has gained in strategic importance. More and more, the leaders of supply chain are being given a “seat at the table”. The tricky part is that it can be known by many names – Operations, Product…
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The Transfer of Ontario Airport & The Challenge Bridging Strategy & Execution

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Many of my Inland Empire colleagues and trusted advisors have been supporting the transfer of ownership of the Ontario Airport back to the city of Ontario (from LAX airport) for YEARS. It was a big surprise when the Los Angeles Times reported breaking news that it is likely to occur within a year. A major win for the Inland Empire! As a supply chain consultant, this is HUGE news. Having the ability to take a declining airport with underutilized assets and vast potential and transform it into a vibrant contributor to the economy – and the manufacturing, distribution and transportation network within the…
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Want Success? Keep Culture Change in Mind.

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After leaving the work force as a VP of Supply Chain and Operations with a successful track record, I knew I could help executives improve business performance; however, I had no idea how to find clients. Thus, I immersed myself in the keys to success of starting a thriving consulting practice. I discovered that referrals were much more important than a “nice-to-have”; they would make or break success. Fast-forward 11 years, and I have built my business on this tenet – it is a relationship business. At least 95% of my business has resulted from repeat business and referrals. What…
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Strategy or Execution?

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If you looked at the last day, week or month, how much of your time are you spending on execution vs. strategy? Is it a surprise? A disappointment? How does it align with your best skills?  Also if you think about your energy level – how are you feeling?  Does this relate to where you are spending your time? Are you excited about your area of focus? Should you adjust the amount of time you are spending on either? Don’t fall into the trap of thinking the answer relates to your position!  Although CEO’s are likely to spend more time on…
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Have You Performed a Supply Chain Checkup Lately?

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As supply chains have become complex, it is no longer a “nice-to-have” to perform supply chain checkups. It has become an imperative. Supply chain performance will have a direct impact on whether a company can grow, whether customers are happy (or searching for competitive alternatives), whether profit will increase, and whether cash will be available. Thus, it must move from being an afterthought to a vital component of strategy. Supply chains have countless components and moving parts. Strategy, culture, people, processes, and systems are all relevant and must be considered in supply chain design. They are cross-functional, cross-organizational and global.…
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Supply Chain Strategies for Success

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If there is one area that changes on a seemingly daily basis, it is your end-to-end supply chain. World events change it. Natural disasters impact it. Security concerns dictate it. And customers’ changing expectations drive supply chain change. How do we keep up with it all? As opposed to talking about the latest supply chain trends, I thought it might be valuable to think about ways to keep up with supply chain changes which could be critical to your success:  Pay attention: Look at your trends. What is changing? Are customers ordering smaller packages? More interested in packaging? What is happening? …
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Strategy to Kick-off the New Year

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Strategy is often thought about near year-end. What was your strategy and is it still valid? Is it effective? Do you have a short-list to think about if you want to ensure your strategy delivers results? I have found that strategy rarely fails in formulation. Instead, it fails in execution. This would indicate that less time should be spent on formulating strategy and putting it into pretty binders. On the other hand, more time should be spent on how to ensure success. One of the reasons over 80% of my business is repeat business is because I help my clients through…
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