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How do you treat your suppliers?

James Speaking at TEDx Portobello

Do you treat your suppliers the same way that you treat your employees?

For many companies, suppliers are used like a fire and forget missile.  They are given a brief and a target and left to get on with it.

Take parcel delivery.  If you are not in the mail order business then parcel deliveries are probably not crucial to your business and a supplier is often chosen on cost.

What does it say about your business if your parcels arrive damp, damaged or delayed?  You probably wouldn’t accept that standard of work from your employees.  Does your parcel delivery company have a smart dress code that matches with your businesses image.

It is so easy to pick suppliers because you have heard their name or they are suitably priced, but they can alter your client’s perception of your business.

At the very least have regular contact with your account manager at your supplier.  Make occasional checks with your customers to see that goods are arriving on time and in good condition.

A training company I worked with once lost a customer because our supplier’s van driver kept parking in a directors parking space.

Take some time to work with your suppliers and make sure they adhere to your standards and not theirs.

For more advice on Communication Skills Check out my book.  “It IS what you say