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CREATIVE SUPPLY MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS FOR THE SERVICES SECTOR ALVIN J. WILLIAMS, Ph.D. UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI HATTIESBURG, MS ISM Services Group.

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Presentation on theme: "CREATIVE SUPPLY MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS FOR THE SERVICES SECTOR ALVIN J. WILLIAMS, Ph.D. UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI HATTIESBURG, MS ISM Services Group."— Presentation transcript:

1 CREATIVE SUPPLY MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS FOR THE SERVICES SECTOR ALVIN J. WILLIAMS, Ph.D. UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI HATTIESBURG, MS ISM Services Group Conference Scottsdale, Arizona December 5, 2002

2 PRESENTATION OBJECTIVES zTo show how supply units in service firms in transition can benefit from creative problem solving zTo show how supply managers can attain their vision through embracing creative techniques zTo focus on the connection between innovation and supply management performance zTo connect world-class supply status in service firms with creative effort

3 CREATIVITY AND WORLD-CLASS SUPPLY MANAGEMENT zWorld class status embraces a decisive, macro- oriented vision of the supply management process and its value-adding potential zWorld class is an evolving state shaped by astute and creative management of critical resources. zOn a world class scale of 1-10, how would you rate your supply management unit? Why? How can you close the performance gap?

4 THE CREATIVITY SKILL SET - IMPLICATIONS FOR SUPPLY MANAGEMENT LEADERSHIP zA dynamic process of recording, retrieving, and reassociating information to form a new idea. zCreativity is kaleidoscopic thinking. It involves taking an existing array of data, phenomena, or assumptions and twisting, shaking, or looking at them from another angle, thus creating a new pattern or process.

5 OTHER PERSPECTIVES ON CREATIVITY zA system for introducing change zA way of thinking about problems zThe process of developing original ideas zTargeted effort toward innovative results zThe capacity to use non-traditional means to solve problems

6 HOW CAN CREATIVITY CONTRIBUTE TO SUPPLY MANAGEMENT SUCCESS? zIncrease the number of alternative solutions zIncrease competitive advantage zEncourage more efficient use of resources zForces a different perspective on problem identification and solution

7 Return on Investment zA two-year in-house creativity course at GE resulted in a 60% increase in patentable ideas. zParticipants in PPGs creativity course showed a 300% increase in viable ideas compared to those not participating in the training. zAt Sylvania, several thousand people took a 40 hour course in creativity. ROI: $20 for $1 spent. zHP invested over $2B in R&D in 1999 and generated 1,300 patent applications. z(Linda Naiman, 2000)

8 THOUGHTS TO CONSIDER zIdentify the most urgent leadership challenges confronting your supply organizations. zWhat are the obstacles to overcoming those challenges in your service organization? zCan creative problem-solving assist in crafting and implementing solutions? zWill current supply leadership, attitudes, practices and processes propel your firm to the next level of performance?

9 SOME CRITICISMS OF PURCHASING - CAN CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING HELP? zToo structured zNot receptive to different ideas and approaches zLack of vision zPurchasers dont add as much value as they say zPurchasing is a play-it-safe activity and should take more risks to achieve goals zPurchasing is not in the mainstream of things

10 CHARACTERISTICS OF CREATIVE SUPPLY PARTNERS zFlexible / Adaptive zPerceptive zFast learners zLess judgmental zMore accepting zLess risk averse zWho are the most creative people in your supply chain? Why? Can you learn from them?

11 CREATIVITY QUOTIENT zDoes your supply unit respond to change quickly? zIs your firm a learning organization? zIs knowledge management part of your organizations core fabric? zAre their incentives for people to be innovative? zHow does your supply unit handle risk? zIs creativity considered a survival necessity?

12 APPLICATIONS OF CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING TO SUPPLY ISSUES zStrategic Sourcing zBusiness Redesign and Restructuring zSupplier Management zValue Creation zSupply Policies, Procedures, and Processes zNegotiating and Supply Chain Communications zQuality Assurance zHuman Resources Management

13 SELECTED CREATIVE TECHNIQUES zBrainstorming / Reverse Brainstorming (Purpose: To generate quantity of ideas / To generate quality ideas) zWhy? Why? Method (Purpose: To determine the underlying or root causes of a problem or challenge.)

14 CREATIVE TECHNIQUES zHow? How? Method (Purpose: To provide an approach or method for systematically collecting data associated with identifying or solving a problem) zMorphological [Matrix] Analysis (Purpose: To focus on all possible combinations of variables in solving problems (using a matrix).

15 IMPEDIMENTS TO CREATIVITY zTradition zBeing too judgmental zIndifference and complacency zInsecurity and uncertainty zEnvironment or situational factors zStructured orientation zWhat are the key impediments to creativity in your organization?

16 DEVELOPING A CREATIVE CULTURE zInnovation must be mission-based zReward system must reinforce creativity zCreativity must be a treasured resource zEffective communication system for new ideas (both vertically and horizontally) zGreater latitudes of risk must be allowed zCreativity must have strong champions within and outside of supply management

17 ENTREPRENEURSHIP AS A CREATIVE STRATEGIC SUPPLY SKILL SET zENTREPRENEURSHIP IS A VISION-BASED, MARKET-ORIENTED, RISK-TAKING PERSPECTIVE THAT FOCUSES RESOURCES AND ENERGY TOWARD SOME END RESULT. zENTREPRENEURSHIP AND CREATIVITY ARE COMPANION PERSPECTIVES AIMED AT ENHANCING SHAREHOLDER VALUE AND WORTH.

18 CYCLES OF CREATIVITY zInertia zImitation zIntuition zImagination zInspiration zWhich cycle(s) reflect your firm? z(Linda Naiman, Creativity and the Meaning of Work, Perspectives on Business and Global Change, 1998)

19 DIMENSIONS OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP zINNOVATIVENESS zRISK-TAKING (willingness to pursue opportunities having a reasonable chance of costly failure) zPROACTIVENESS zPERCEPTUAL ACUMEN

20 USING CREATIVITY TO CREATE VALUE IN A SUPPLY CONTEXT zDELINEATING OPPORTUNITIES zDEVELOPING THE BUSINESS CONCEPT zRESOURCE ACQUISITION zADROIT IMPLEMENTATION OF THE CONCEPT zMANAGING AND HARVESTING THE VENTURE

21 CREATIVITY AUDITS - CLOSING THE GAP zCOMPREHENSIVE REVIEW OF OPPORTUNITIES TO USE CREATIVITY TO HEIGHTEN PERFORMANCE zSTRUCTURE OF CREATIVITY AUDITS zEXAMPLES OF SPECIFIC APPLICATIONS OF AUDITS

22 SUPPLY LEADERSHIP AND CREATIVITY: WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? zRETHINK PRODUCTS, PEOPLE, AND PROCESSES (ARE THERE BETTER COMBINATIONS OF THESE RESOURCES?) zTHINK AND ACT CREATIVELY, MARKETINGLIKE AND ENTREPRENEURIALLY zRECONSIDER RISK TOLERANCES IN SUPPLY zINTEGRATE BOTH LEARNING- AND MARKETING-BASED ORIENTATIONS INTO THE SUPPLY CULTURE

23 Hewlett-Packards Philosophy on Fostering Creativity zRules of the Garage: zBelieve you can change the world. zWork quickly, keep the tools unlocked, work whenever. zKnow when to work alone and when to work together. zShare - tools, ideas. Trust your colleagues. zNo politics. No bureaucracy. (These are ridiculous in a garage.)

24 HPs Philosophy Continued zThe customer defines a job well done. zRadical ideas are not bad ideas. zInvent different ways of working. zMake a contribution every day. If it doesnt contribute, it doesnt leave the garage. zBelieve that together we can do anything. zInvent z(1999 HP Annual Report)

25 Selected References zAmabile, Teresa M., How to Kill Creativity, Harvard Business Review, September-October 1998, pp zFontenot, Nancy A., Effects of Training in Creativity and Creative Problem Finding Upon Business People, Journal of Social Psychology, Vol. 133, February zGryskiewicz, Stanley and Robert Epstein, Cashing in on Creativity at Work, Psychology Today, September- October zKenny, Jennifer, Unleashing Creative Competency, Workforce, October 1999, Vol. 78, Issue 10. zSutton, Robert I., The Weird Rules of Creativity, Harvard Business Review, September 2001.


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