Attitude vs. Skill and Being 25 Again – Your Procurious Discussions

It’s been a while since we wrapped up some of the discussions on Procurious, but the questions and answers have still been coming in thick and fast.

This month, we’ve selected three of our most popular discussions, covering topics including attitudes and skills of procurement professionals, eSourcing and the chance to revisit our career choice.

What is more important, the right attitude or the right skill set?

This question really caught the eye of the community and has great resonance in procurement and supply chain given all the recent talk of talent gaps and recruitment struggles.

For many employers, finding the right person is more than the skills and experience that they possess, but ensuring that the candidate will be a good cultural fit. But which of these is more important?

The common consensus in the community was that, in a straight choice, it was attitude, rather than skill, that was more important. James Ferguson struck a chord with the belief that “new skills can be taught, attitude can’t”.

The right attitude allows the right skills to be learned more readily, with the individual willing to learn and helping with the overall development of the team too.

However, Darren Niblo and Monica Palacios had the opposite stance. Darren argued that attitudes could change over time, while Monica stated that it was dependent on the seniority of the individual, with executives needing the skills (i.e. understanding the environment) in order to succeed.

What’s the first thing that comes into your head when you hear the word ‘eSourcing’?

This is another hot topic, with procurement increasingly moving towards working electronically with new technology. However, a lack of clarity can sometimes inhibit the use of technology or systems, even when they seem very straightforward.

The most popular answer from the community was from Samantha Coombs, whose definition of eSourcing was “Procure-to-pay all in one platforms, with bolt on contract management blocks as and when required”, also stating that the process was “revolutionising procurement globally”.

Other key themes associated with the concept of eSourcing were:

  • Efficiency
  • Centralisation
  • Driving savings for the business
  • Repeatability
  • Collaborative and easy for both sides
  • Innovative

Two answers also highlighted the networking opportunities eSourcing presented, either speaking to an existing contact or inviting new/unknown suppliers into the RFx process.

And one thing we can all agree on is that it is a positive move away from endless printing, photocopying and envelope stuffing!

If you were 25 again, would you follow the same career path?


Posed by Procurious’ own Jordan Early, the question comes from the Procurious interview with ISM CEO Tom Derry.

Tom told Procurious, “If I was 25 again, I couldn’t think of a field that I would personally find more fascinating than a corporate career in procurement and supply chain.”

Perhaps unsurprisingly for a community of highly motivated, intelligent and progressive procurement and supply chain professionals, the verdict was unanimous – we would all make the same choice given our time again.

With more people actively seeking a career in procurement, the number of individuals ‘falling’ into the profession is decreasing. And with the opportunity to be an architect of change and drive business efficiency, mentor new entrants and push forward the boundaries of the profession, why wouldn’t you want to work in procurement!

Once again, we’d like to thank you for being part of our community and sharing your knowledge with your peers and colleagues.

If you have a burning question you would like answered, head over to the Discussion forum and pick the brains of your fellow professionals.