What was your favorite conference session at ISM 2014?
“Sourcing and Spend Analytics – Maximizing Impact, Influence, and Effectiveness” by Francisco Montecinos, Chief Information Officer of GE Energy Management. Francisco was very knowledgeable of the space and had loads of experience; he was realistic in his expectations, had grown up through the ranks, and understood the value of data for procurement.
He also discussed Colin Powell’s “40-70 rule” regarding tough decision-making, and shared several relevant quotes with us, including the following:
- “Perfect is the enemy of good.” – Proverb
- “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” – Peter Drucker
- “If you aren’t embarrassed by your first version of product, then you launched too late.” – Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn founder
- “Don’t let perfection stand in the way of progress.” – AmEX
The “40-70 rule” – every time you face a tough decision, you should have no less than forty percent and no more than seventy percent of the information you need to make the decision. If you make the decision with less than forty percent, you are shooting from the hip and will make too many mistakes. If you have more than seventy percent of the information, the opportunity probably passed, and someone else has beaten you to the punch.
I spoke with users from Sapa, Giant Eagle, Brunswick, Alkermes, Equifax and more. It was great to hear their stories, suggestions, and praise for Iasta support. One user from Pinnacle Entertainment in Las Vegas stopped by just to say that our internal support team rocks!
With exhibitor-only permissions, I was unable to attend any sessions. However, I was able to catch a few moments of T. Boone Pickens’ keynote which was very interesting.
Who was the most interesting person you met at ISM 2014?
T. Boone Pickens – an 85-year-old activist for alternative energy who is still going strong! I didn’t actually meet him in person, but he gave the keynote our first day. He is funny, worldly, and very philanthropic. He is also a capitalist and “calls a spade a spade.”
Actually, it was an analyst at Boeing who didn’t choose us to advance in a recent RFP. He proactively complimented us on our RFP strategy, but because our vision didn’t match the requirements of Boeing’s current initiative, we weren’t chosen. I also complimented Boeing on its sourcing strategy, which involved the creation of a targeted, specific, and small set of questions as a gate to the full RFI. It did not require a huge investment of time from the vendors; it was simply the most important “go-no go” questions the company had. Boeing only wanted to invite vendors to the RFI who could realistically win. This is a fantastic strategy!
The best part of the conversation was hearing the analyst’s views on cloud companies, such as Iasta. He was very complimentary of our innovation and vision in the area of sourcing intelligence and analytics.
He believes companies like Iasta – best of breed, privately owned and focused in the area of strategic sourcing – are pushing the giant ERPs and network/consulting- and services/P2P-focused companies to step up their games in the area of BI development. Data is driving the best decisions, and companies such as Iasta are making data democratic in the procurement space. Companies like Boeing want the installs to behave more like nimble cloud companies, but acknowledge that some things just can’t be replicated, including the support, the speed, and the hands-on account management.
Jose Canseco! Followed by Charlie Villasenor of TransProcure/PASIA
What was the most unique or interesting fact you learned at ISM 2014?
• 67% of companies without supplier diversity will employ these in the next 2 years (CAPS research).
• Asians, Blacks, and Hispanics will account for 92% of the U.S. population growth in the next 5 years.
• The United States is one of the few nations that allows private ownership of underground mineral resources – e.g. when you buy property, you also buy the rights to mine any underground minerals on your property.
• 25% of companies have supplier relationship management software, but 80% of companies believe there is value (Procurement Leaders Study).
ISM and Thomas.Net are starting a program to recognize the “30 under 30” in supply chain, which is a great way to recognize and cultivate the next generation of talent in the industry.
Procurement professionals want to continue to learn about the new best practices. There is a thirst for continual improvement regardless of procurement maturity level. I did not encounter any procurement practitioners who felt that they were happy to merely maintain their current status.
What was your favorite Las Vegas restaurant or attraction?
Other than seeing Jose Canseco in person with Chad Hinen? Probably learning to play craps!
O’Sheas Casino and Piero’s Italian Cuisine were the highlights for me.
Check out more pictures from the event:
If you went to ISM 2014 last week, what was your favorite session? Who was the most interesting person you met at the conference or along the strip at Vegas? Comment below or tweet us @iasta to share your stories.