Issue: In addition to the Legal Symposium in Boise I spoke about last month I've also had the good fortune to attend the ISM leadership Workshop and International Conference in Charlotte. Thus this newsletter contains random [I had to say that for Michelle] notes and comments I picked up at all three events. Enjoy!
Interesting topics for affiliate programs and discussions.
Affiliate marketing suggestion:
Encourage all members to take past issues of
Inside Supply Management or affiliate newsletters whenever they go to a
waiting room. Ask that they leave the magazine or newsletter behind in the
waiting room magazine rack when they are done with the appointment. Everyone in
the community visits the dentist or doctor. Having something interesting to
read in a waiting room would be a welcome change for most people. Leverage the
publication, by adding a colorful sticker with affiliate contact information,
web site address and an invitation.
Ross Reck Video
A number of people have emailed me asking for the link to my YouTube video, so here's the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gzpdinvXHw See if you can spot my cameo appearances and, by all means, feel free to comment on YouTube or to me directly. The title of the video is Bosses Gone Wild. Have a great day! Ross
Business Law Symposium, Boise.
Copyright is a noun not a verb. A copyright is created when the intellectual property is created. You don’t have to register it to own it. A copyright is forever. Thus arises a significant issue when using shareware or freeware software. Where’s the license to use it for your business? Even thought it’s freely posted, if you don’t have a clear license to use it – signed by the documented owner of the copyright - then there is a risk that the true owner could come to claim it someday. Remember the fight long ago between Amazon.com and the author of a shareware search tool Amazon had started using. Good speaker on the subject: Lawyer; Bradley R Frazer, Hawley Troxell, Boise, ID.
Read more about the symposium in my March newsletter (sorry I have a few notes form our panel discussion, but nothing well organized). Ben and Christina spoke about the latest updates and changes in the UCC and international contract laws. I whined about what procurement could really use in the way of help from legal counsel. It was great because our discussion in Idaho fit right in to an interesting presentation at the ISM conference.
ISM Conference Notes
Find the presentations on line: http://www.ism.ws/education/handouts94.cfm
The Legal Structure of an International Supply Chain Jeffrey J. Mayer, J.D., L.L.M. and John Shapiro, J.D. I've heard these lawyers speak before and this presentation did not disappoint. Probably the most important point I heard in the International workshop, was to make sure you know who you are contracting with if the goods are coming from a foreign country. Is your contact an authorized representative, agent or just a middleman. It will make a big difference if a legal battle ensues.
Best Practices in Using Technology in Procurement, John Tuttle. Good discussion of a procurement department technology strategy. One important point would be to optimize and document a process before trying to automate it. Without knowing all the parameters and expected outcomes, you could end up implementing an expensive piece of software which doesn't do the right job. Except when you are considering a complete new system package, and in that case exactly the opposite can be true. Get the package and re-map processes to take better advantage of the new software tools.
Supply Management as a Path to the Corner Office, Mark D. Steele, PE, CPIM, CQE. Corporations are increasingly seeing the value of Supply Chain Managers when looking for senior executives. This could be due in part to the increasing use of an effective Supply Chain as a competitive business strategy.
Supplier Bankruptcy: How to Mitigate Your Risk, Kenneth P. Black, P.M.P. Since I know so little about bankruptcy law, this was a very informative presentation. A key idea is to include contract clauses that allow you to act before the contractor declares bankruptcy. Clauses that allow examination of financial & solvency data, removal of partially complete work at the buyers discretion, 3rd party storage of raw materials that the buyer has paid for and protection of intellectual property associated with the process (drawings, software code, assembly manuals, etc.).
Career Transitioning in Supply Management, Patrick Knobloch, MBA, MS and Randy Ingebridson. Remember when we all started working we heard that people change jobs an average of 5 times in their careers. Today, the younger generation will likely change jobs 9 times in their career. He also thinks that the most important part of looking for a new job is using your professional network. Two other key ideas:
At the opening panel discussion, I'm not sure who said it: Difficult times require better communication within the organization.
Affiliate pre-meeting discussion topic:
How to keep your professional network healthy.
How do I recruit volunteers for a committee?
Ask a person to help with a specific task. A task that is quantifiable, finite, and that they can be successful at. Encourage, motivate and reward. Then ask another person for help with a different task. The key is to approach likely helpers directly with an “I would appreciate your help…” request.
Note: whether requesting volunteers or recruiting a helper, start with a list of defined tasks. Be ready to give your volunteer something to do that can be successfully accomplished. Even if it is participating in a brainstorming session (formerly known as a committee meeting) to develop an action item list.
The biggest difference between a helper and an otherwise inactive member is your personal request for assistance. Use effective communication and praise to encourage your helper to take on additional tasks. The difference between a group of helpers and a committee is…. Hmmmm maybe there isn’t! Remember no one wants to go to yet another meeting, or volunteer for an unknown commitment – but many people will respond to a specific request for assistance.
Suggestion for involving younger members. Approach younger members of the affiliate who are familiar with new technologies and networking sites. Request their help in mentoring a more technically challenged affiliate officer or BOD member. Ask the younger person to help the senior person become familiar with using new networking tools and technology. In exchange the more senior person can provide career advice, insight into the advantages of ISM membership and introductions to other professional contacts in affiliate and at conferences. A win-win benefit to both.
Add a new position or responsibility to the affiliate BOD; Technology Director. Responsibilities can include exploring ways that technology can be used to help manage the affiliate and improve communication with affiliate members. The director can also manage the affiliate technical assets including the domain name, web site, software and social networking groups. Read more... I've asked for a copy of the position description drafted by St. Loius and we'll share it online when it becomes available. This could be a fun assignment for a youthful member and a great way to get a future resource involved with affiliate management. When recruiting the “volunteer” don’t forget to highlight the fact that the "Technology Director" title could be a valuable addition to what might otherwise be a sparse resume.
J. Shipman Gold Medal Award
I was happy to be present at the ISM Conference to see Richard D. Rich, C.P.M. receive this recognition. I met Richard a long time ago when he was NAPM President. Listening to the very long list of his contributions was inspiring. Read the full news release here: www.ism.ws/about/MediaRoom/newsreleasedetail.cfm?ItemNumber=19222
ISM Persons of the Year
I was very surprised and happy to receive the ISM Innovation/Creativity Person of the Year award. Each year ISM recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions. Most importantly, these awards result from nominations made by ISM members, not ISM staff. It was an honor to be included among the other very deserving recipients. Many thanks to those of you who took the time and effort to nominate me for this award. I was in good company, the other winners were:
Education/Learning Person of the Year
Marketing/Communicating Person of the Year
Volunteer Person of the Year
Leadership Person of the Year
Read the full news release here:
NAPM Alaska received an Affiliate excellence award - Congratulations! NAPM—Tulsa, Inc. received the Affiliate of the Year Award. Read the news release: www.ism.ws/about/MediaRoom/newsreleasedetail.cfm?ItemNumber=19215
Leadership Workshop 2009
Thanks to the efforts of Jan Miller, support of ISM staff and many volunteers, we managed to hold a valuable one-day Leadership workshop in Charlotte prior to the International Conference. Jan and her staff will be working to post all of the workshop presentations online in the Affiliate Support area of the ISM web site.
There were nearly 100 of us who took advantage of the time to meet, share ideas and improve our skills. We learned to be better leaders and more about ISM resources. Take the time to thank your leaders for attending on your behalf and ask for feedback about specific workshops and subjects discussed.
I opened the workshop with a few thoughts about leadership and also presented to sessions on using technology. You can find copies on my web site using the links below.
Sharing The Value
How do you encourage members who attended the leadership workshop to share the information and materials with other BOD members? Either at a day-long planning meeting or at a working dinner, it’s important to facilitate the information sharing process. Ask the attendee to bring materials and handouts, ask specific questions and most importantly give them the time to share while it’s all still fresh in their minds. Here are some sample questions to ask:
Leadership Workshop 2010
Tentatively planned to starting Friday April 23, 2010 at noon and continue through Saturday. This is the weekend of the 2010 ISM International Conference in San Diego. I highly recommend new officers and active members of the affiliate attend the leadership workshop. Jan is hoping to again not charge any fee for attending the workshop. Given the location, I expect it to be a well-attended and fun event. Even if you don’t yet know who a new officer will be, budget the cost to attend, make a TBD reservation and initiate travel plans.
Handouts and Presentations
2009 International Conference: http://www.ism.ws/education/handouts94.cfm
Hired Help Shortcut
I heard from one affiliate that creatively solved their workload problem by contracting with a stay-at-home mom on an hourly basis to help manage affiliate business. As a 1099 contractor, she records her hours spent , answering emails, updating membership lists, updating the web site, distributing meeting minutes, etc. With luck you can find a stay-at-home mom who is familiar with the affiliate and has the skills to spend X-hours per month working on affiliate business. A well-documented time card and reasonable hourly rate make this a winner for the affiliate and the affiliate's contract employee.
I know - when do you have time to get involved with all these? Answer: One less I Love Lucy rerun per week. [note: if you don't remember the chocolate factory or grape stomping episodes, then you are young enough that you already probably are connected and just need to know that there are ISM groups.]
ISM Discussion Forum and Blog
ISM has a brand new members-only discussion forum and blog web site. Really cool. Check it out in the members only area at: http://www.ism.ws/bulletin/ Read some of the daily Blog entries from the ISM Conference.
At breakfast, several of use were discussing resumes and the spelling
mistakes that can accumulate because Word's spell checker accepts the wrong
word. I have a significant problems typing the words form and
from. The solution is easy. Set up a custom dictionary in Word and include
words that will always be flagged as misspelled. It's a little techie, but worth
the effort to keep misspelled, but otherwise legitimate, words [like pubic
for example] out of your business correspondence.
Take a minute to reconsider…...
Ever send an email only to wish you hadn’t a few
At the office, I stop Outlook from automatically sending messages by setting my Send/ Receive options to wait a minute (or more) Instead of immediately sending the message after I click the send button, Outbox patiently stores it in my Outbox for a minute and gives me a chance to reconsider the ramifications of what I said. If I decide not to send the message or to edit it, I can pick it out of the Outlook Outbox - otherwise Outlook sends automatically a minute or two later.
Change the option in the Tools menu > Options > MailSetup >Send/Receive >Schedule automatic Send/Receive.
At home, I always compose email while offline (mostly for security reasons) and then only after I’m done do I connect and ask Outlook to Send/Receive messages.
IE 8? Windows 7?
Recommend you wait. Remember, being the first mouse to get to the mouse trap isn't the best idea.
Home Computer Security - latest newsletter from Microsoft
If you have a home computer, then you should be taking steps to keep yourself and your family safe on line. I highly recommend you subscribe to a newsletter, if for no other reason than to get familiar with the terminology and issues. http://www.microsoft.com/protect/secnews/default.mspx
This was the headline article from a recent newsletter:
Computer viruses: Everything you need to knowYour PC is behaving strangely - could it be infected with spyware, or a virus? Find out by learning precisely , and the Microsoft Security center . If you diagnose an infection, see how to use antivirus tools to help remove the virus from your PC.
Video Worth Sharing
Looking for something interesting to put on your web site or in an online newsletter. Try inserting a link to one of ISM's promotional videos.
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! As always, you are welcome to use my articles or presentations for educational purposes. Just as long as you are not charging for the materials and credit the source.
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