BuyTrain News

May 2007

  ISM News
Personal Development
Mailing list subscription form 


NAPM-ISW (Boise) plans to host the Pacific Northwest Purchasing Conference on November 1 - 3, 2007. The conference will be held in the SUB at Boise State University. The plan includes a reception on Thursday evening, November 1st, conference sessions on Friday, November 2nd and half day sessions on Saturday, November 3rd. Breakfast and lunch will be provided on Friday and Saturday as well as a dinner on Friday the 2nd. The conference will include a trade show and at least 30 exhibitors are expected. Boise would appreciate any help you can provide on recommending exhibitors; booth space will cost $250 and include a half page ad in the conference program. As speakers and exhibitors are confirmed we'll provide an update. We expect to have a block of rooms reserved at a hotel within walking distance of BSU.

For more information watch the Idaho SW web site or contact Norm Beckert, Conference Chair, at:   

PC Tips Seminar -  handouts posted

For a limited time only! PC Tips, self extracting zip file. I have posted the handout from a recent PC workshop on my web site. It will be removed by about the end of May.  Look here & download  it now if you want a copy.

Personal Development

Curious about the cutting edge of Supply Chain organizational innovation? Want to know where other companies are applying new strategies and techniques to improve efficiency? One good place to observe award- winning companies is at the ISM R. Gene Richter Awards for Leadership and Innovation in Supply Management.

The awards program is designed to:

At the ISM International Supply Management Conferences, award winners are announced. Winners also present programs at the conference outlining their innovative approaches. Outlines of the award submissions as well as articles about the new processes in Inside Supply Management®.

Winners are selected from among dozens of competing proposals. Small and large organizations spending just a little as well as those with bigger budgets are represented.   You can read about a new process Johnson & Johnson developed and implemented a legal sourcing initiative that translated into companywide savings and customer satisfaction.  Or read about Rockwell Collins'  Electronic Request for Quote and Automated Purchase Orders (eRFQ/APO) and Fluor Hanford’s E-store initiative.

Want some ideas about how your organization can improve? The R. Gene Richter Awards would be a good place to start.

How Much is Enough?

In case you missed the ISM Just in ETime news  ISM has released the 2007 Salary Survey Results. This survey tabulates salary demographics for 1155 of our Supply Chain peers. I recommend ISM members download and look closely at the detailed report. Instead of focusing on the overall averages, compare for example the averages based on highest education level. Notice that women with college degrees (BA or MA) make more than the overall average for women. Men with “other” degrees make less than the overall average whereas a degree in Supply Management puts you above the average regardless of gender.

Use the data when planning a career or negotiating a raise.  This survey would also make an interesting interactive dinner discussion where audience members are challenged to pick out and discuss the significant factors or interesting details.

ISM News

I just Returned from the ISM Conference in Las Vegas. It was a super collection of programs and Supply Chain Professionals from around the world. I'll have a few more comments about specific programs and ideas over the next few months, but for now, I suggest taking a look at the conference proceedings online in the ISM web site.

Dr. Bertice Berry delivered a very moving, motivating and funny keynote. Among other messages, she made a very good point about making a decision to defy stereotypes with humor and purpose. I highly recommend you hear her if you have the chance.

Malcolm Gladwell spoke about first impressions and judgment. His ideas about blink” decision making, highlight the fact that too much data, analysis and review can change a person with good judgment to a person who uses poor judgment. I plan to look for his book.

Leadership Workshops; Maximize Your ROI

In just a month or two, affiliate leaders and volunteers from around the country will be converging on the ISM summer leadership workshops.  For us old-timers, the workshops are a fun place to network with old friends and ISM staff. But for many new volunteers, this will be their first exposure the ISM organization at large. In some cases this will be the first time that they have interacted with leaders outside of their own affiliate. Apprehension is understandable. To help affiliates and first-timers have a more enjoyable and effective experience, I have published some suggestions for getting the most from the ISM leadership workshops. Read about it here.....

2007 Leadership Training Workshop Registration Packets can be accessed from  Representatives from your affiliate may attend any of the three workshops. Please feel welcome to send as many affiliate representatives as necessary to a Leadership Training Workshop. ISM will award $300 per attendee for up to five (5) workshop attendees from each affiliate.

Each of the Leadership Training Committees has planned a Spirit Award event. Please see complete details on page 2 of each of the registration packets. 2007 Spirit Awards will be presented at lunch on Saturday.

Las Vegas Leadership Training Workshop

July 6-7, 2007 ISM Las Vegas Leadership Training Workshop. The workshop will begin at 11:30 a.m. on Friday, July 6th to allow for Friday morning travel. If you plan on being in Las Vegas on Friday morning, the Leadership Training Committee has scheduled seven pre-workshop sessions. Please see the workshop registration packet at , for details.

June 1, 2007 Early bird registration ($150) deadline. Registrations submitted after this date will be $165. Register online at .

June21, 2007 Hotel registration deadline. All reservations are processed on a space available basis, so please make your reservations early. Hotel reservation information can be found on page 13 of the registration packet.

Software Tips


I use specific Word Command or menu choices on a regular basis. Isn't there a quicker way to invoke the command instead of clicking through several menu choices?

Assign a special keystroke to the command ( such as CTRL+ALT+R). Then run the command just by pressing the keystroke.

There are many different command and menu choices available. You can easily print a list of available commands and currently assigned keys. Then reassign keystrokes to frequently used commands.

Here's How
[click the image to see a larger view]

Shut the barn door before the cows come home

Portable USB drives are great! They hold lots of data, are small, easy to use and really easy to loose.  Before using a USB drive, consider the data that will be on your USB drive for others to read when they find it. You might loose a complete address book, salary history, proprietary drawings or grandmother’s secret cookie recipe. Act now to prevent the loss of important information by encrypting or password protecting sensitive data stored on USB drives.

There are several free software programs that will encrypt data files and some USB drives even include programs to do that.  Search Google for " +USB +encryption ". I’m trying out software called TRUCRYPT.

Here’s how TRUCRYPT works [NOTE: this is only a simple explanation, before trying it on anything important, READ THE USER INSTRUCTIONS]

1- Download the truecrypt software to the USB drive, then click to install.  This will open a set of files.

2- Create a new folder on the drive to hold your encrypted file

3- Run the TrueCrypt.exe software – read each of the dialog boxes as you go – click CREATE VOLUME > select file and create a new file called LOCKBOX, SAFE  – or similar filename.

4- Follow the dialog to select this new file, then specify a size big enough to hold the files you want to encrypt –

5- Supply a password then exit.

This creates an encrypted file that you can then use to store copies of files you want protected.

6- When you are ready to add or open files in your crypt – start the TrueCrypt program to open your LOCKBOX.  It will “mount” the LOCKBOX file and assign it a temporary drive letter on the PC.l;

7- Drag and drop, open and save files in the LOCKBOX just like any other drive.

8- Use the TrueCrypt program to DISMOUNT the drive when you are through adding files. NOTE: If  you remove the USB drive, the file locks again even though the drive letter will still be assigned.

Sounds complicated – but really not

With all that, I should add that I have just started learning to use the program. So far it seems to work well. And I plan to use it to encrypt at least the very delicate files on all my various USB drives.

Look a gift horse in the mouth

While we are on the subject of USB drives, remember  the warnings I gave a few months ago about finding a lost USB drive . Since many PCs auto-start a USB drive when it is plugged in, USB drives can be a very nasty source of viral infections. Unless you really really really know what you are doing – don’t pick up and play just any old USB drive you find lying around.  It’s not like picking up and eating candy dropped on the ground– there is no 2-second rule.


Emergency preparedness resource guide. A great resource for families. Would make a useful and fun neighborhood discussion over hot dogs and punch.

Is this you?

Can’t read the fine print disclaimers on a web site? Instead of adjusting monitor resolution – try the on-screen MAGNIFIER.  It’s located in the Windows ACESSORIES > ACCESSIBILITY menu.   Basically the program places a magnifying glass on the screen that can be moved around or set to show a magnified view of wherever you point the mouse. Move the magnifying glass wherever you want, resize it or even dock it to the side of the screen.  Both Windows XP and Windows Vista have this helpful tool

Provide Feedback and suggestions for future newsletters at any time. I'll try and use what I can.

I really do appreciate those of you who take the time to write and comment on this newsletter!  



Read more articles in the Purchasing Toolbox at and in the BuyTrain news article archive at Return to MLTweb

MLTWEB is assembled and maintained by Michael L. Taylor, C.P.M. 
Materials and articles prepared by Mike may be shared for purchasing education provided that this source is cited and no fee is charged. The rights for any other use are withheld.
Copyright;  Michael L. Taylor, C.P.M.
Last Updated: 05/23/2006