Jami Bliss, CPSM, CPSD
Joe Cavinato, Ph.D.
Thunderbird School of
Ric Freeman, C.P.M.
Jerry Miller, CPSM, CPSD
Union Bank & Trust
JDA Software Group
Brian Schulties, C.P.M.
University of San Diego
Meghan Truchan, CPSM
Ron Wilson, CPSM, C.P.M.
Wilbur Curtis Company
RELATIONSHIPS IN GOOD TIMES AND BAD
As we go to press with this month’s issue of Inside Supply Management®, we are all
coming to grips with the devastation brought by Hurricane Harvey.
Tens of thousands of lives in Texas and Louisiana were
tragically altered by this 500-year storm, and recovery
and rebuilding will take years. Many people lost almost
everything — their shelter, their livelihoods, their
possessions. Our best wishes go out to all of them.
We hope that those now suffering can count
relationships cultivated, both personal and professional,
among the things that survived. Those relationships will
comfort and support them through this disaster.
The importance of relationships can hardly be
overstressed. In good times, they can provide
meaning and substance as we work to develop and
nurture them. In the context of supply management,
supplier relationship management is an important
skill. Suppliers in the strategic quadrant are often
referred to as “partners” and can be an important
source of innovation. A master supply manager labors
to build strong, mutually beneficial relationships with
strategic partners. The cover story on page 18 details
how Keurig Green Mountain is working to positively
influence its most important partners.
However, it’s during times of adversity and challenge
that relationships are most valuable. In many
circumstances, relationships that have been developed
will be proofed and strengthened in the forge of
misfortune. Undoubtedly, many strategic partnerships
will be tested in the aftermath of Harvey — and many
other relationships will grow into strategic partnerships.
In the context of a calamity, like the Deepwater Horizon
incident, we see that even short-lived procurement
relationships can be important and meaningful, as the
feature story on page 24 shows. The touch of human-to-human interaction is the balm that can make doing
business under trying circumstances more bearable
and even a win-win.
Harvey is a major, ongoing event that will impact many
businesses. To understand how supply managers have
assessed this impact, ISM Research conducted a
study within its Manufacturing and Non-Manufacturing
Business Survey Committees on how a key set of
business metrics may be affected by Harvey, and
whether purchasing and supply executives expect
supplies of key commodities to be negatively
impacted. The study results are available at
Director, ISM Research & Publications
Institute for Supply Management®