Getting Ready for 2017: Reflections on Telling Lies

By | Demand, Global Supply Chains, Inventory Management, Supply Chain | No Comments

The streets below me today are icy and wet. It is a dark and dismal day. However, not for long. The gloomy streets will soon be alive with Mummers to ring in the New Year in Philadelphia. The Mummers Parade is a Philadelphia tradition. I love the string bands, and I will be standing at the corner of Broad and City Hall celebrating the New Year. New Year’s Eve is a…

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Not the Jetsons: Ten Use Cases for Cognitive Learning in Supply Chain

By | Big data supply chains, customer-centric supply chains, Demand | No Comments

Remember the Jetsons?  While the Flintstones chronicled a Stone Age family with work powered by birds and dinosaurs, the Jetsons symbolized the future. The show aired with catchy music from 1962 to 1963, then later in syndication, with new episodes, in 1985 to 1987. While the Flintstones rolled around in crude vehicles with stone wheels, the Jetsons rode high over the city buildings in airborne spacecraft. Robots and automation enriched the Jetsons’ lives….

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Building the Network of Networks. Call for Action. Want to Help?

By | Big data supply chains, Digital Supply Chain, Global Supply Chains, market-driven value chains, Supply Chain visibility | No Comments

In the 1980s commercial internet providers evolved. In 2001 Steve Jobs put 1000 songs in our pocket.  And steadily, over the last three decades, mobile phones changed the pace of business. In the process, the banks got bigger and business networks grew more complex. In the last decade social networks and new business models evolved. eCommerce and electronic shopping carts drove new forms of commerce. It lifted all boats in…

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Carter’s: A Story of Supply Chain Leadership

By | Supply Chain Excellence, Supply Chain Leadership, Supply Chains to Admire | No Comments

To drive global scale, companies need to design the supply chain to buy globally and execute locally. Not many companies have cracked this code. The design of the supply chain is fundamental to making this happen. Managing complexity is key. In our interview of the Supply Chains to Admire Winners, we found a unique approach at Carter’s. Here we share the story. About Carter’s Carter’s, Inc., also known as the…

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Five Trends That Excite Me!

By | Big data supply chains, market-driven value chains, Market-driven value networks, Supply Chain visibility | One Comment

Holiday travel. Packed airports and the children screaming in unison. Today as I sit scrunched into a coach seat in 26C, working on this blog post and hoping to not spill my coffee on my neighbor, I dutifully type to complete my weekly post. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I give thanks for our clients and the ability to do what we do.  Here I share insights on the work…

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VTech: A Story of a Supply Chain Leader

By | Demand, demand driven, Digital Supply Chain, Market-Driven, Supply Chain Leadership | No Comments

Slowly, more and more companies are waking up to the cold and hard facts. Financial balance sheet improvements cannot be driven by traditional supply chain processes. In the words of a supply chain leader yesterday, “Lora, please give me stories of success. I have personally experienced the failure.  Lift my soul by sharing some success stories.”  This is my new mission. Through the next two months I am focusing on…

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Five Things I Have Learned About Global Supply Chain Planning

By | Global Supply Chains, Supply chain planning, Uncategorized | No Comments

Another plane, another client; and yet another discussion. They are sounding a bit the same. I am trying to not sound like a broken record. Regional supply chain companies are attempting to define global requirements. They are well versed in requirements for regional supply chain planning, but they are attempting to redefine their processes and be more global. It is very similar to the man in the picture: a company attempting…

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Customer-Centric Supply Chains: Adding Clarity to the Muddle

By | customer-centric supply chains, Demand driven, demand driven, Downstream data, Market-Driven | One Comment

It was November. I was speaking at a client site. The topic was customer-centric supply chains. We started the morning by asking attendees to share their definition of a customer-centric supply chain. I slowly wrote the definitions on the whiteboard. At the end of the sharing I had as many definitions on the board as people in the room. The only thing that was clear was the lack of definition…

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Three Mistakes Teams Need to Avoid in Selecting Supply Chain Planning

By | Uncategorized | One Comment

Mistakes happen. Supply chain planning user satisfaction is a flip of the coin. Satisfaction is low: one in two supply chain planning software users states satisfaction.  Successful implementations start with the software selection. Supply chain planing is now three decades old. Today over 82% of companies have some form of supply chain planning. With the rash of merger and acquisition activities, many companies have inherited multiple systems. The average is 2 to…

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Direct Material Woes: Seven Steps to Take to Improve Value

By | innovation, Procurement, Risk management, Supply Chain Excellence | No Comments

It is fall. The hot and humid days are giving way to cool and crisp weather. Today, as I type this blog post, the rain is softly falling on my windowsill. The wet streets below signal a shift in seasons. The seasonal rhythms link the threads of our life. As fall becomes winter, supply chain leaders are planning their budgets and building strategies for 2017.  With this in mind, in this blog…

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