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Grow Partners, Don’t Just Keep Vendors!

Grow Partners, Don’t Just Keep Vendors!

Managing Your Supply Chain for Success

Part 1 of 10

This is the first installment in our Managing Your Supply Chain Series, where we explore the relationship between you and your Vendors.

In almost every industry, Vendors can allow you to expand your capacity and can help you scale and grow your business.

Unfortunately, Vendors also require management and that can come with more than a few headaches.

This series will give you valuable food for thought as you evaluate your current and potential Vendors and will help you reach greater Supply Chain success.

We’ll discuss some of the pain points you may be experiencing, ideas for dealing with your Vendors, and things that you should be comfortable demanding from them.

Keep in mind that we are both Vendor to some companies and Customer to others.

To start off our series, let’s begin with the word Partnership.

Vendor Partnerships

Where are your current relationships with your Vendors?  Are they Partnerships? Necessary evils? Or somewhere in between? 

Here are three questions to consider about your Vendor relationships:

1. Do you think of your Vendors as an extension of your Team/Company?

If you don’t think of Vendors as Partners, it’s likely that they won’t feel like a Partner, either.  How you think of your Vendors informs how you deal with them, and if you mentally keep them at arm’s length, they’ll feel the distance.

2. Does it feel like you are constantly looking for new Vendors because the ones you have don’t perform as they promised?

If this is true, take time to consider how you’re interacting with them.  Ensuring that you provide support and information to your Vendors can help them be more successful.  It also shows them you care, and when that’s the case, they’ll be more likely to perform for you.

3. Do you think your Vendors have your best interests in mind?

Any company needs to take care of its own interests and your Vendors are no exception.  However, engaging with your Vendors to make sure they know what you need from them is an important way to help them see your interests, too.  If your Vendors know what matters to you, there is a much greater chance that they will provide it to you.

Grow Vendors into Partners

You deserve a Vendor who will be your Partner and help you achieve success, but it doesn’t happen by accident.  If you can help your Vendors be successful, then your Supply Chain can help you be successful.  So, grow those Vendor relationships into Partnerships and see how that will help your business grow.

In our next episode, we’ll dive into the scary world of Vendor pricing negotiations!