Target 2-small

Are you involved in small business capacity building?

If you are a supplier diversity, purchasing or supply chain management professional, then odds are you have found it challenging to identify and comfortably promote many of the small businesses that approach your organization. Perhaps there is doubt that they can perform or that they are operationally stable.

Let’s be honest, in your role, the last thing you want is for your recommendations to come back to bite you. After all, you have professional aspirations of your own.

It’s a slippery slope. Promoting small businesses and finding opportunities to integrate them into the company’s operations or projects is the reason for your position, as well as how you are measured.  Likewise, you know that your enterprise cannot function and innovate solely on the resources it has in-house; no company can. But it is clear more of these smaller firms need business development assistance that goes beyond lending and training.

Now is the time to get smarter about quantifying exactly what each firm needs so that you can justify and leverage your diversity investments and programs. With the FLITER Business & Leadership Rating Scale you will gain:

  • Confidence in your recommendations by gained insight into the operational strength and points of vulnerability your small and diverse suppliers face
  • Credibility as your recommendations drive value for your department and business goals
  • Data and helpful information regarding the small businesses’ capabilities

Interdependence exists among large organizations and small to mid-size companies. Small and mid-sized companies often provide specialization and offer advantages by virtue of their size that larger corporations and government simply cannot. Among those advantages are benefits accrued by the corporation as a direct result of working with the small provider. Small business benefits include adaptation, speed, flexibility, cost, innovation, customized solutions, narrow focus, nimble decision making, and close client relationships based on a desire to satisfy the need and gain the next opportunity.

Today, shifting demographics and consumer tastes demand a more diverse approach. The enterprise increases economic value as a result of the inclusion of small, diverse firms in their overall strategies for market penetration or product expansion.

The FLITER Business & Leadership Rating Scale is like a gap analysis on steroids. It can provide the supplier diversity and purchasing professional with quantifiable information and insight into whether the company has the capacity, structure and business acumen to fulfill contracts. This insight can support your business goals, satisfy government requirements, reduce costs, gain recognition and please stakeholders.

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EfficiencyGearIt comes as no surprise that profits can be improved as efficiencies are gained. After all, business operations impact the speed at which things can be accomplished as well as how quickly the need for fixes can be identified and remedied. Can you imagine a surgical procedure taking place without the procedure part? Surgery without steps is a recipe for disaster! Treatment of disease, injury, and deformity is done in phases not all at once or in a random, haphazard way. Procedures are the steps, actions, set-ups and functions that must take place in their correct sequence. Just as it is with surgery, it is the same in all other forms of business. The steps are the written, documented parts that are to be followed by people.

In my experience in business management, this is where things can get dicey. How many times have we heard statements like, “Managing the business would be easy if it weren’t for the people.” Or ,“My biggest challenge is getting my people to work together.”

Indeed efficiency, that ability to get as much output as possible from a given number of inputs, sure beats either not using all inputs or not using inputs in the best possible way. People are the greatest source of inputs to organizational work and what they produce are its outputs. The way to get more efficiency then is to use only as many human and material resources as is necessary to achieve a particular objective and to give people written processes to follow that have been proven to speed the completion of tasks, reduce errors and satisfy customer wants and expectations.

Prepare employees in advance so as to enable intense focus or concentration on a specific thought or task, while blocking out sources of distraction. In so doing, more gets finished, people’s sense of accomplishment is heightened and a greater return on investment is gained.