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Supply Chain Excellence

Chinese yuan

Will the Downturn Signal an Upturn?

By | Demand, Demand sensing, Market-Driven, Market-driven forecasting, Supply chain economic recovery, Supply Chain Excellence | 3 Comments

Volatility. Demand redefined. Economic markets plummeting. Daily we see the financial charts roll across the news. “It’s partly about growth, partly about trade, and partly about psychology.” CNN Money – August 12, 2015 On Tuesday and Wednesday, the Chinese restated and devalued the Yuan.  The new valuation and its impact is swinging the global stock markets. The water cooler is buzzing. The discussions on 401K losses of 10-13% permeate the…

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Five Reflections From Supply Chain Planning Benchmarking

By | Demand, Supply Chain, Supply chain excellence, Supply Chain Excellence, Supply chain planning | No Comments

Benchmarking is a measurement of the quality of an organization’s policies, products, programs or strategies against standard measurements.  Business Dictionary.com Writing a Shaman blog post is now a Sunday night ritual. For me, it is a good time to reflect, think and share what I am learning. In my work with Supply Chain Insights, I immerse myself in learning. I continually question my long-held beliefs on supply chain excellence.  I…

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S&OP: A Tough Nut to Crack

By | Market-Driven, Sales and Operations Planning, Supply Chain Excellence | 3 Comments

Idiom – A Tough Nut to Crack: A problem that is very difficult to solve. Cambridge Dictionary Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP) is over 30 years old. I have been studying it as a researcher for 15 years. With the rise of the global multinational, S&OP increased in importance as a way to align and drive organizational balance. In parallel, as shown in the attached infographic, challenges to do it well increased. Companies…

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Driving Organizational Alignment

By | Supply Chain, Supply chain excellence, Supply Chain Excellence, Supply Chain Insights, Supply Chain Leadership, Supply Chain Talent | No Comments

 How can we move forward if we cannot align? In supply chain strategy documents, terms like alignment, agility, responsiveness, and flexibility dot the page. At a principle level everyone agrees with the concepts. In meetings, groups nod their heads that the strategy is correct. However, at a practical level companies struggle with the implementation of strategy due to a lack of definition. It is not easy. In my work with organizations I ask companies…

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Wanted: Supply Chain Architects!

By | Demand, Market-Driven, New technologies, Supply Chain, Supply Chain Excellence, Supply Chain Insights Community | One Comment

Forty years ago, as a chemical engineering student, I learned the tedious craft of chemical plant design. It was a world of heat exchangers, distillation columns, reactors, tanks, pumps, valves, and dryers. I liked the classes, and would spend hours talking to my professors about the design of the factory. Getting good at factory design is a merit badge of sorts for the chemical engineer. When I moved into industry,…

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Sales and Operations Alignment: Often the Missing Link

By | Demand, Market-Driven, Sales and Operations Planning, Supply Chain, Supply chain excellence, Supply Chain Excellence, Supply Chain Insights Community, Supply Chain Leadership, Supply Chain Talent | No Comments

I pushed aside Shane’s motorbike helmet and jacket to take a seat in his crowded office. It was a beautiful spring day in March in Basel, Switzerland. Shane is a stocky man of medium build who I love talking to. He is an engaging personality: definitely a people person. He had recently returned from his stint as the commercial leader for Syngenta in Vietnam, and was excited to tell me about his…

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The Journey for Excellence

By | Sales and Operations Planning, Supply Chain, Supply chain excellence, Supply Chain Excellence, Supply Chain Insights, Supply Chain Talent | No Comments

It is finally spring in Philadelphia. Yesterday, as I walked the streets on the way to ballet, I saw flowers for the first time in a year. I love spring. It is a time for awakening. My body is decompressing from travel, but my mind is full of ideas. I have been on the road for the past three weeks speaking at seven events. Travel is both enriching and exhausting….

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Clouds: A Beautiful Thing for Sure!

By | Big data supply chains, New technologies, Supply Chain, Supply Chain Excellence, Supply Chain Insights Community | No Comments

I have been an analyst for over a decade. Two years at Gartner, six years at AMR Research (now Gartner), two years at Altimeter Group, and three years as the founder of Supply Chain Insights. During this period I have watched the acceptance of cloud-based supply chain solutions evolve. In 2002 there was no interest. In studies from the period of 2006-2008, there was slow adoption of 15-20%; and today, the…

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Let’s Fail Forward….

By | Supply Chain, Supply Chain Excellence, Supply Chain Leadership, Supply Chain Talent | No Comments

One in three companies have a supply chain center of excellence, but only one in two is successful. These are grim statistics. This is especially true when the word “excellence” drips off of the lips of the supply chain leaders that I meet. At Supply Chain Insights, we are busy working on a report on Centers of Excellence to understand the drivers and barriers. While I will know more when I…

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