I do not publish too many posts on LinkedIn any more because of ‘Gresham’s Law‘. However, once in a while I still publish content that would be relevant to that platform.
I was delivering the keynote speech at the Quintiq World Tour recently at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore – where I met over 200 supply chain professionals. I start my discussions of this nature with a simple question about the definition of supply chain in your company. It is always interesting to note that no two definitions of supply chain are exactly the same in practice.
The boundaries of supply chains within the companies are rarely clear. I have written about this extensively in my books and blogs – here is one small post for example. You do not have to be a C-Level genius to see the impact of this confusion on your business. Even a journalist with relatively shallow understanding of key business underpinnings can quickly grasp the enormous waste that results from confusion in planning.
What struck me in the event – when I was answering questions as part of the concluding panel – was that a number of supply chains have been hijacked by institutions for their own purposes. Sometimes an entire nation, or at least its government can be led to believe that supply chain is merely logistics, or procurement. In due course, this will show up as a huge disconnect between the government policy and commercial imperatives of the businesses it is trying to attract and keep in this global high-stakes game.
At a micro-level, you may get only the first level results and miss out the four higher level results from supply chains. This would be like owning a fruit laden tree and just harvesting the fruit from the lowest rung of the ladder, while leaving all the other fruit in the middle and top to rot on the tree. Here is a simple graphic to explain what I mean:
There is a self-benchmarking tool at the source of this graphic – which may help you decide whether your supply chain has also been hijacked. If you have doubts about whether you should consider this quick self-benchmarking tool, consider the slide below (from my presentation at the event) shows the contrast between the two extremes of SCM clearly:
Do not forget – who defines your supply chain will also define your business. Might as well be you.