The Seven Scruples of a Sourcing Sensei

A great sourcing department is led by a great sourcing leader – but what does a sourcing leader do that sets her apart from everyone else? Simply put, to earn her place at the top, she astricts. More specifically, great sourcing leaders analyze, strategize, believe in team recognition, innovate, focus on compliance, use technology, and always have an eye out for sustainability. More specifically:

  • Analysis
    A sourcing leader understands the importance of analysis and carefully analyzes the situation before making important decisions, putting something up for bid, or signing a contract. She has a data-centric approach, based on spend analysis, that she uses to cut through the nonsense and find the real opportunities.
  • Strategy
    A great sourcing leader recognizes that the truly successful don’t get ahead by flying by the seat of one’s pants. She also recognizes that no one gets ahead by just focussing on day-to-day tactical operations. A great sourcing leader has a strategy. One that is built on a solid foundation, based on detailed and thoughtful analysis.
  • Team Recognition
    A great sourcing leader is a team builder that believes in regularly recognizing and rewarding her team for her accomplishments. This recognition comes in the form of public praise when they succeed, bonuses when they exceed savings targets, and a salary that’s at least at the high end of market average.
  • Innovation
    A great sourcing leader is focussed on constant innovation and improvement that enables her, and her organization, to not only adapt to the market, but to lead it where they want it to go. A great sourcing leader is constantly on the lookout for new innovations in technology, business process, and relationship management that she can use to improve the operations of not only her unit, but the enterprise and supply chain as a whole.
  • Compliance
    A great sourcing leader recognizes that compliance is not just the multi-faceted buzzword of the day, but the key to realizable savings, low risk operations, and positive press.
  • Technology
    A great sourcing leader is always on the lookout for new technologies that can help her team get a better handle on the supply chain as a whole as well as for new best-of-breed technologies that can improve performance in key activities with the potential to generate significant value or advance the overall organizational strategy.
  • Sustainability
    A great sourcing leader knows that sustainability is more than just a buzzword, it’s the key to successful business year after year. That’s why she makes sure that each strategy employed is sustainable, that each supplier used is responsible, and that environmental and social responsibility is always considered.

For more information on The Seven Scruples of a Sourcing Sensei, I strongly encourage you to check out the new Sourcing Leadership wiki-paper over on the e-Sourcing Wiki. Besides diving deeper into each of the actions that a sourcing leader does differently, it also discusses The Seven Savors of a Sourcing Sensei, or the seven key fundamental skill sets that set sourcing leaders apart from others.

2 Responses to The Seven Scruples of a Sourcing Sensei

  1. Glad to see that sustainability is included here as one of the seven attributes of a great sourcing leader. Since the vast majority of a company’s carbon footprint is embedded in its supply chain, any business that’s committed to sustainability needs to focus its efforts there. A comprehensive sustainability platform must address the environmental impact of products upstream and downstream, throughout the entire value chain.

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