ISM/Zycus Poll Results On Procurement Relationships Telling

Posted on September 19, 2017


During this morning’s ISM/Zycus Webinar, I ran three polls.

With close to 190 people in attendance, here are the results with my take on what each response means.

There was also a very active chat room throughout the entire webinar, so you will definitely want to listen to the on-demand version as soon as it is available. I will hopefully have the link posted over the next day or two so stay tuned.

Poll #1

What is the key to a successful relationship?

While Communication/Collaboration was the clear winner, what is most telling about these results is that the one with the greatest influence on relationship success finished third in the voting.

Without transparency, you cannot actually communicate or collaborate, nor can you determine if your partners or suppliers have similar values relative to achieving a shared outcome.

This tells me that the adversarial mindset in which procurement is reduced to a zero-sum game may be more ingrained in the organizational psyche than we know.

Poll 1

Poll #2

Does procurement have the ability to achieve superior outcomes outside of a crisis?

While the majority of respondents believe that this is possible, the paucity of successful case studies such as the Minnesota I-35 bridge project may suggest otherwise.

Poll 2

Poll #3

In procurement, how important is it to understand the other person’s (i.e., supplier’s) position?

The fact that 77 percent of respondents recognize that understanding the other party’s position in a business dealing is important is promising. However, the ability to put this sentiment into actual practice was mainly based on two factors; senior management’s commitment to champion such an approach and the willingness of frontline procurement professionals to bring this kind of information to executives.

The general sense I had is that while the intentions are definitely there, the ability to practice a collective vision approach is still a work in progress.

Poll 3

What is your take on the above polls? Share your thoughts here in the comment section, or on Twitter using the hashtag #PIOpenTalk.


Posted in: Commentary, webinars