Why you want this man to buy you a car

Could this man make a living out of procurement?

Up until recently David Johns was just an ordinary Australian going about his life… But that changes when Johns decided to create the world’s slickest used car ad.

johns

The outcome was simple – Johns just wanted to get rid of his 1999 Holden Barina hatchback. A car which isn’t going to set the used car pages alight; sure it’s a capable-enough little runner, but its unassuming looks won’t make potential buyers go weak at the knees.

It also helps that Johns is a digital director of an Australian design agency, but who was he to know the Internet would warm to it like it did…

Such is the success of the viral hit (over 845k views and counting), Johns has agreed to donate the proceeds to a charity looking to fight cancer.

Of course, at the end of the day it’s all a bit of fun, but we can’t help think that through the video Johns has demonstrated some of the attributes of a procurement superstar. He seems to have made a pretty solid case for the car – that shows negotiations nous!

A solid professional also requires the ability to innovate – Johns video has confidently disrupted the typically-staid view of the used car market, while in the same breath inspiring others to follow his lead.

Discover more must-have attributes

But this isn’t the first time this approach has been used… Back in 2008 the American’s did it first! Here they are with their slick ad for a decidedly-dodgy 1988 Dodge Aries K Car.

The same dynamism and ambition is also present in this Swedish used car ad for a Volvo (1.6m YouTube views).

What do you make of the video; do you think you could do better, and more importantly – would you hire him?

Want to see what others are doing on Procurious?

Open your eyes – now it’s easier than ever to see what’s happening on your online business network.

We’ve been doing a lot of work behind the scenes at Procurious HQ this week…

Choose between two network feeds

 

Your new timeline

Pay a visit to your ‘Community’ tab and you might notice something has changed… We now provide you with a choice of viewing modes; ‘Whole Network’ or ‘My Network’.

We’ve made the changes (in-part) to allow you to see the richness of the network, and remind you of the activity going on around you. So now you can see when your contacts ask and answer questions, or when they share and reply to a post.

If you want to keep an eye on everything happening on Procurious, the Whole Network view is for you. Unlike the My Network option, you will see every interaction in ‘almost’ real-time.

Both views also include useful notifications about the people your contacts are adding to their networks.

You can switch between the two at will, so see which view you prefer!

connect

Get connected

Along with the updates we announced in our previous blog post, it’s now easier than ever to make connections across the Procurious network. Remind yourself of these here.

Today you’ll also see a new ‘Get connected’ area towards the right of your view (note: not on the ‘Learning’ or ‘Blog’ pages). This is a place where we suggest other Procurious members we think you should add to your network. Should you wish to search for some more, you can either refresh your browser window, or click the additional link to ‘view more’.

See what else is happening

But we’re not done yet… Journey beyond Get Connected and you will find a showcase of all the other cool things that are happening on Procurious.

As you can see we’ve chosen to highlight a selection of new blog postings, training videos, discussion topics, and forthcoming events.

We hope you’ll agree that these are powerful and worthwhile changes to the network. As ever we value your feedback, so feel free to comment below or email us at info@procurious.com

Follow us on Twitter to keep updated, and hear about the new features winging their way to the network first.

Winning leadership lessons from the World Cup

How to be a real contender, improve your game and win. 

Pixabay

A lot has been written about Brazil’s spectacular fall from grace, but less on Germany’s titanic struggle in the climatic last game. Now the dust has settled and people go back to their normal lives, what has the World Cup actually taught us?

Let’s hear from a few experts:

Avoid creating mavericks so says S. Venkatesh, executive director, KEC International, RPG Group.

“It is something we grapple within organizations all the time on how to encourage teams while encouraging star performers. I believe in encouraging star performers. Only star performers bring in exponential change.”

Develop the next generation – Anurag Shrivastava, chief executive, HRNext.

A leader inspires confidence in his people and motivates them towards achieving a common goal… It is important that an organization should continuously work on developing its next generation of leaders and technical experts.”

Shrivastava continues: “They may not be the best, but they have the necessary know-how in their domains. An organization should encourage and recognize the next level of performers as well. Globally and in India, firms such as General Electric Co., Google Inc., Hindustan Unilever Ltd and ITC Ltd keep working on developing their leadership pipeline and conduct programmes for further enhancement of employee skill sets.”

Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, a contributor on Forbes.com who specializes in the psychology of leadership writes:

“Whether in sports, politics or business, major achievements are always the result of team rather than individual efforts. And teams can never emerge without the vision, guidance, and management of a leader.

Good leaders may seem bigger than their teams, but only when they are attention-seeking narcissists. Although we tend to attribute collective team achievements to specific individuals, individual talent only shines in the right context. That is, you can be the most talented person in the world but on your own you will achieve nothing.”

In summing up, he comments: “Although we tend to regard talent and personality as two unrelated things, there is a close connection between them. Talent without personality is less likely to succeed than personality without talent. And the bigger the stakes, the more success depends on personality.”

Can you add any more to our scorecard? If so, leave your World Cup leadership lessons in the comments below. No fouls please!

Fast fashion not welcome at Berlin Fashion Week

Join us as we recount some of the biggest news stories making headlines across the world.

Berlin Fashion Week 2014

Fast fashion bumped-off Berlin catwalk

  • 2014 Berlin Fashion Week kicked off on July 8,  and sought to highlight the latest trends in the clothing industry.
  • This year, the main events are the Green Showroom and the Ethical Runway, where brands with a strong social and environmental production record will present their new collections.
  • The Fashion Week’s focus on ethical and “green” collections is a sign of the industry’s growing awareness about the social and environmental impacts of clothing production.

Read more at Deutsche Welle

Child labor probe

  • Samsung has temporarily suspended its business relationship with one of its suppliers after finding evidence of suspected child labor violations at its facilities.
  • The move comes three days after US activist group China Labor Watch released a new report that detailed children working on assembly lines at Samsung supplier Shinyang Electronics in Dongguan, China.
  • The group’s report alleged that several of the seasonal workers in the Dongguan plant were minors who work 11 hours a day, 7 days a week, without overtime pay.

Read more at Cnet

BMW’s Mexican move

  • BMW to build vehicle assembly plant in San Luis Potosí, Mexico
  • The decision underscores Mexico’s increasing importance as a car manufacturing hub following the recent announcement of Daimler and Nissan establishing a joint venture at Aguascalientes.

Read more at Supply Chain Brain

Supply chain needs

  • Brazil’s federal government in the coming weeks should conclude a study of the wind power sector’s supply chain in order to identify bottlenecks and investment needs.

Read more at Recharge News

President Obama

More safeguards for suppliers

  • President Obama and the White House recently announced the “SupplierPay” initiative.
  • SupplierPay is the private sector equivalent of the Federal Government’s QuickPay initiative. Like QuickPay, SupplierPay seeks to lower the working capital cost of small business suppliers by having large businesses pay small suppliers quickly.
  • The initiative also encourages companies to enable financing solutions to help small suppliers access working capital at a lower cost.
  • Apple, AT&T, Coca-Cola, IBM, and Toyota were among the first twenty-six companies to adopt the SupplierPay pledge.
  • Additionally, the USHCC has applauded Johnson & Johnson for joining President Obama’s Supply Chain Initiative

Read more at Wall St. Cheat Sheet

Shipping & logistics industry comes under attack

  • Weaponized malware was delivered into shipping and logistics enterprise environments.
  • It originated from a Chinese manufacturer responsible for selling proprietary hardware for terminal scanners used to inventory items being shipped or transported in and out many countries.
  • The threat has been dubbed “Zombie Zero”

Read more at Supply Chain 24/7

Small and medium enterprises news

  • The government of New South Wales in Australia has announced greater opportunities for SMEs to bid for public contracts.
  • Under a change which came into effect on 1 July, state agencies are now required to look for at least one quote from an SME for contracts worth up to AUS$1 million (£547,000). This will cover around $1 billion (£547 million) worth of deals.

Read more at Supply Management

Research and whitepapers

  • HFS Research has published its very first blueprint report on supply chain management BPO

Call on me? Procurious talks to Telstras Richard Allen

The next entry in our #firstmovers series features Telstra’s Chief Procurement Officer & Executive Director of Enterprise Services – Richard Allen.

He may have swapped beverages for telephones, but for Richard Allen the game has stayed the same.

Read more about Richard Allen here.

Richard Allen  (Telstra) on Procurious.com

Procurious asks: How do you think procurement differs in your country, as opposed to elsewhere in the world?

Richard: At Telstra I am lucky enough to be able to connect with procurement professionals from around the globe and I’m always struck by the common challenges facing a CPOs or Procurement teams. Often firms and teams are at different maturity levels but there are more similarities than differences.

Procurious: Do you know how many other procurement professionals are in your country? 

Richard: No but its growing. It’s becoming a profession of choice due to the commerciality of the roles and the cross business reach and impact.

Procurious: Are you usually an early adopter? (Perhaps you’ve been a “first mover” with something else…)

Richard: I am an early adopter –  technology and gadgets mainly. One of the great things about working for Telstra is the opportunity to look, feel, and touch the next generation of mobile devices.

Procurious: Why did you join the network?

Richard: I’m a believer in and supporter of the profession and Procurious enables connection to more people. It also facilitates more conversations about what procurement are thinking and working on.

How did you find out about Procurious?

Richard: I was part of the user/beta group

Procurious: What are you hoping to get out of the network?

Richard: Connection, ideas, inspiration.

Procurious: And finally… Are you going to invite your peers?

Richard: Yes – the strength of Procurious is in the depth and breadth of its user base. 

Meet our other #firstmovers:
Harold (Hal) Good
Farshad Bahmed
Sergio Giordano
Paul Smith

5 common procurement myths busted

We arm you with some myth-busting one-liners to help you educate your workplace.

Flickr (merfam)
Suddenly bean counting took on a whole new meaning…

Myth: Procurement people are nothing more than over-paid bean counters

Reality: Procurement people have a vastly different role and responsibilities to Finance people, with each contributing differently to the success of the overall business. For procurement, this often means acting as the interface and conduit for the business with external parties and being agents of change and innovation within the business. Procurement people are just as much sales people as they are finance people.

Myth: Procurement is a constant obstacle for other business functions

Reality: Procurement works with other business functions to overcome business obstacles and create better outcomes. Often this is not a quick fix for the short-term; rather it’s an action for the long-term. Obstacle or aid, it’s a deliberate practice for business sustainability.

Myth: Procurement people just get in the way and complicate things

Reality: Procurement people help make things happen, in the right way and with the right resources. This takes effort upfront and should be seen as an opportunity to get things done right. Complications arise from lack of consideration, which is not the case for procurement.

Myth: Procurement is nothing more than glorified outsourcing

Reality: Procurement is the means to consider different options and seek opportunities, get thinking creatively, and forge new and better ways. Outsourcing is a potential strategy that has its appropriate uses, but it’s not the only option that is put in place.

Myth: Procurement departments are always trying to find ways to save costs, but don’t consider the broader cost to the business of what they do

Reality: Cost is a major factor, but it’s more than just a dollar value. Procurement is in a good position to highlight different perspectives and the cost/benefits from business decisions. Savings is one of the tangible outcomes from looking at situations differently.

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If you could ask just ONE question…

What would it be?

The ‘Discussions’ area on Procurious is buzzing with inquisitive minds. So if you could ask just one question to your fellow members, what would it be?

Struggling? Here’s some inspiration:

Lisa Malone asks – ‘Which are the biggest Procurement teams in the UK and Europe?’

Alexandra Goffey wants to know – ‘Do you negotiate KPIs into contracts pre or post award?’

While Jack Slade poses – ‘What’s your favourite buying story?’

You can even consult the Procurious community for help with your studies – just like Alejandro Santos. Go and give him some love!

The Procurious Discussions page

Where can I find it?

Discussions is one of the tabs on the Procurious navigation bar. Alternatively, you can catch a preview of the latest posts from your ‘Community’ page – just scroll halfway down and it’ll be on the right.

Getting to know the Discussions page

The Discussions default view will list all questions by date asked. You can alter this by using the ‘Sort by’ drop-down menu.

Want to hone in on a certain topic? You can also specify which questions you see by selecting a topic in the ‘Show questions in…’ menu.

Asking a new question on Procurious.com

To pose a question, just start tapping away in this long box. Yes, that one right there.

Don’t worry about the ‘Add more details’ field, this is entirely optional. But you’ll be prompted to select a topic/subtopic for categorising purposes.

When done, just hit the green button to ‘Post’.

How to follow a discussion on Procurious

If you’re wanting to keep track of more than a few different questions, click the ‘Follow’ button found on the question’s page.

You can view your specially-curated collection by selecting the ‘Following’ tab on the main Discussions page.

That’s as hard as it gets… Very soon you’ll be firing off answers and coming up with thoughtful head scratchers like the best of them!

Sharing your discussion

Once you’ve submitted your question, you could always just sit back and wait for the Procurious community to reply… But why not share your discussion with your contacts, or even further afield on social media?

Share a discussion on Procurious

To share a Procurious discussion: click the ‘Share’ command, and select from Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Google+.

Behind the scenes of Starbucks global supply chain

As the Seattle-based company seeks to find a foothold in Chennai, interest in the high-street staple has piqued.


A Behind the Scenes Look at Starbucks Global Supply Chain

This insightful piece of film isn’t new but it still offers a fascinating peek behind the scenes of the world’s largest coffee houses.

Cast aside any aspersions you may have and see how Starbucks manages to make 70,000 deliveries a week look easy…

Starbucks global supply chain manages its activities through four distinct functions, namely: Plan, Source, Make and Deliver. Watch the video to see what processes go into achieving each one, and leave your thoughts below.

Would you recommend any changes to the Starbucks formula?

Has Amazon identified a niche market in wearable tech?

Where do you stand on wearable gadgets? Internet retailer Amazon is betting big on the niche wearable technology market.

Amazon has launched a specialist storefront dedicated to wearable technology and gadgets.

Google Glass - Amazon launches wearable technology store

Whether it’s activity trackers, smartwatches, heart rate monitors, wearable cameras, or Google Glass-like devices, Amazon has struck upon a particularly fashionable niche…

Amazon’s one-stop-shop for wearable technology has the potential to disrupt –it is after-all a first mover in this new retail space, and as such expect the copycats to follow in their droves…

Wearables on the rise

When it comes to both innovation and appeal, wearables have come a relatively long way in a short space of time. Originally viewed as a passing fad back in 2012, tech plaudits predicted that wearable tech would go the way of 3D. Sure, it’s an interesting space to be in, but could it fuel a sustainable ecosystem over time?

In that same year (2012) wearables accounted for a $2.7 billion spend, with the number expected to reach $8.3 billion by 2018. By that reckoning, wearables are going to be with us for a little longer yet…

Nike+ Fuel Band

At the time of writing, the Amazon store lists over 100 different products. But with wearables expanding into clothing and even skin, Deloitte predicts global sales of wearables will top 10 million during 2014.

In addition, a survey by Accenture indicated that smartwatches appealed to 46% of people polled, whereas Google Glass (or an alternative) attracted 42% of the vote. In total 6000 people were polled.

12 things you need to know this week

What’s been top of the news agenda?

Facebook, Tesla, John Lewis, and the Renault-Nissan alliance have all made headlines, so we’ve gathered all you need to know into one handy weekly news digest. We’re useful like that…

John Lewis (Reading, UK)

Crowdsourcing (UK)

  • One of the UK’s biggest organisations is considering using crowdsourcing for indirect procurement to help drive innovation from suppliers
  • The John Lewis Partnership believes that crowdsourcing can help to identify a very specific problem, issue or opportunity and gives a platform to offer a prize for the best solution

Read more on Supply Management

Top Procurement Challenges

  • An Ardent Partners report has highlighted that the biggest challenge for Chief Procurement Officers in the coming year is staff or talent
  • 57% of CPOs believe that flat headcount, stagnant skills capabilities, and / or greater staff responsibility represent their greatest challenge in 2014

Read more on CPO Rising

Australian Industry Changes

  • A study by IBISWorld has revealed the expected industry patterns for the coming financial year
  • Industries expected to rise over the year include Online Education, Building Societies and Mortgages; industries expected to fall over the year include Grain-sheep or grain-beef cattle farming, Automotive electrical component manufacturing and Petroleum refining and petroleum fuel manufacturing

Read more on IBISWorld

Procurement Relationships (UK)

  • The new CPO of Fujitsu for UK and Ireland, Clive Rees, has stated that the focus of Procurement shouldn’t just be on cost reduction, but on relationship management too
  • He has encouraged his team to be seen at stakeholder meetings, change the way the Procurement function is viewed internally and get more value from internal and external relationships

Global Fraud Survey (UK)

  • EY’s Global Fraud Survey has found that more than one in 10 firms globally have experienced a “significant fraud” in the past two years
  • However, when surveyed, 46 per cent of respondents in the UK said offering entertainment to customers to win or retain business was acceptable

Renault-Nissan alliance. Image Wiki Commons

Procurement Alliances (Europe)

  • The procurement function of the Renault-Nissan alliance has reported savings of €1.036 billion (£824 million; US$1.4bn) savings in 2013
  • The Alliance is looking for further synergies in future, but Purchasing was the biggest contributor for cost reductions, cost avoidance and revenue increases last year

Automotive Industry

  • Tesla are set to become one of the major players in the US automotive industry, according to Morgan Stanley
  • Four states are vying for the right to be home to the company’s US $5bn factory and General Motors have even begun to look at Tesla’s culture and success to see if they can replicate it

Read more at Sourcing Guy Blog

Supply Chain Data

  • An article on Supply Chain 24/7 has assessed how to turn Supply Chain data into actionable information
  • According to the article, there are three main ways to use the data – Reporting, Scorecarding and Benchmarking, each providing different levels of information for the organisation to use

Read more at Supply Chain 24/7

Questioning in Leadership

  • Asking the right questions is a valuable skill for leaders to have, but just as critical is how the questions are asked
  • Asking questions in the right way can engage and motivate people, but equally asking them in the wrong way can create a negative mood or blame culture
  • HBR gives an insight into five questions that leaders shouldn’t ask, and the way that they can phrase these questions to get the best answers

Read more at Harvard Business Review

Business Breakdown

  • Coles has admitted to threatening suppliers with sanction if they refused to pay to take part in a new supply chain program
  • The Federal Trade Commission has accused T-Mobile of illegally earning hundreds of millions of dollars by overbilling customers
  • Europe’s privacy regulators are investigating whether Facebook broke local privacy laws when it conducted a highly criticised social experiment in January 2012

Read more at Spend Matters