While reading Cuts from the Center, which records a recent CPO Agenda Executive debate held during this past winter, I couldn’t help but notice Nikki Bell’s comment on how she gets frustrated when we make excuses about how we can’t have the right data, or about people protecting data. I have to agree. This is what kills Supply Management initiatives that could save the organization Millions (and in some cases, Billions) of dollars.
And it’s ridiculous. Everyone in the organization needs to know that organizational data IS organizational data and that anyone who has access to organizational data has access to ALL organizational data. And Senior Executives, starting with the CEO, have to mandate this. No exceptions. If information is sensitive, then it should be “scrubbed”, “sanitized”, or “anonymized”, and the data then made available for analysis and mining. Without complete data, you cannot do a proper spend analysis project, and without a proper spend analysis, you will not find the true savings opportunities. And if you want to recover overpayments and avoid unnecessary spending, you need to do a proper spend analysis and uncover the true savings opportunities.
Your data is your data. So mandate it’s use. Remember, if you want performance, you have to make it so.
Not only do we have Headlines from the Land of D’oh, but we also have Questions from the Land of the Obvious. This one, in my K@W archives from earlier this year, that asks Is China’s Rise Sustainable is an obvious example.
Of Course it’s sustainable. Let’s start with some simple facts:
- over 1.3 Billion People
that’s almost 1/5th of the planet’s population
- over 3 Trillion in Currency Reserves
compare that to the US debt of almost 15 Trillion
- annual GDP of 6 Trillion
it’s the 2nd largest GDP and could surpass the US GDP in the 2020s at the current growth rate, and even if it doesn’t, it will come damn close
- over 160 Cities with 1M+ people
and this number is expected to exceed 300 before the decade is over as China urbanizes (and surpasses 50% urbanization); North America has around 20 such cities.
- China is moving from low value assembly to high value add
Foxconn produces some of the most advanced electronics in the world
- Significant R&D funding
By 2010, Innofund alone had invested almost 9 Billion RMB
- Significant Infrastructure Advancements
The 12th Five Year Guideline has significant infrastructure investments. The high-speed railway will exceed 45,000 km (which could cross Canada 6 times!), the highway network will exceed 83,000 km, new airports will be built (including one in Beijing), and 36 Million affordable apartments for low income people will be built (which could house the entire population of Canada*)
- while we spend, they save
They have money to spend when the time is right to buy.
- they are Renewable Energy leaders
They know their rate of fossil fuel consumption is not sustainable and aim to double their rate of renewable energy electricity over the next five years while building 400 nuclear power plants by 2035.
- the party is Patient
They realize that long term change takes a long time and that focus on quarterly objectives is STUPID! They know a long term plan is not 3 years, it is 10 years or more!
- their civilization is truly ancient
Their written history extends back over 2,600 years, beginning in the Shang Dynasty, and early texts recount oral histories of the Xia Dynasty that go back over 3,000 years. And, with the wisdom of age, they remember the lessons learned over the years. They were the superpower of the world for most of the last two centuries. If they hadn’t closed their borders early last century, and missed out on the Industrial Revolution, they would never have fallen. But they have learned from their error, and are investing heavily in the information revolution and the knowledge economy. Unless something drastic happens, it’s only a matter of time before they not only catch up, but regain their #1 place.
In other words, this was a headline from the land of the obvious. It’s not a matter of if the rise is sustainable, it’s a matter of how fast China is going to rise.
* which is fortunate, because, at the rate they are buying up property in our coastal cities, us Canadians may have to move there