July 26

Episode 047 – Boost Procurement Perception – Pt. 5 Be more controversial

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Today, we finish off our mini series on how to improve the perception of procurement.

Episode Highlights

  • This last part is about being more controversial
  • If you want to have a look at the previous four parts, which were
    • have a killer profile
    • develop thought provoking content
    • step up on stage and
    • be your own brand
  • have a look at the description or at our website where all parts are listed
  • The final part talks about being more controversial
  • In general this goes very well along with the other parts of this mini series
  • it helps you to stand out and "sharpen" your profile
  • if you consider pt 2 - developing though provoking content - how many of your colleagues have done that already?
  • of do you know of any colleagues that have a private homepage (as described in pt 4)
  • so how can you be more controversial
  • basically I see 3 different ways you can use in every day business life
    1. Speak against a "common truth":
      1. you cannot do electric vehicles in a fun way. Well, I think you can said Elon Musk
      2. you cannto do commercial space exploration. Let's see said the same person
      3. or a smaller example: redlining, this is the way to deal with a contract.
        1. I don't think so, said I
      4. if you remember the pt 2 of this mini series I showed an example where I have created a different way of dealing with contracts by taking it out of MS Word's track change mode
      5. this raised already a little controversy. I'm not progressing the human race as such but it surely was a progress for my organization
    2. Talk about taboo topics
      1. do yo remember any of the very successful United Colors of Benetton campaigns? The mastered the art of touching taboo topics
      2. in a negotiators life this can be adressing subtle but inacceptable behavior of suppliers
      3. when you do this, others will compliment you for your will to stand in the fire and outright address inacceptable behaviors
      4. or involve yourself into sales discussions. If your sales markets parts of the products you buy for your company, let's cross that line and talk to the sales guys
    3. Open a debate
      1. there are a lot of options for this one:
      2. a few years back I developed an organizatonal maturity matrix - how well prepared is your org for professional procurement?
      3. at that time, the level they were in was controversial
      4. that opened a lot of great discussions often starting: what is that on the wall behind you (where I postered it)
      5. this is a massive credibility booster, because it goes far beyond "can you negotiate that rate card please"
  • so we have seen quite a few examples of how you can be more controversial but there are some things you also might want to consider
  • Always be controversial for a reason, not just to fire up an argument
  • If you are relying on sources , make sure to double check them
  • Don't be a copycat, try to be unique
  • Be objective (maybe the hardest commandment)
  • Have respect for people that see it differently

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