Spend Matters Afternoon Coffee

MetalMiner and Zycus Collaborate on Commodity Video Series

What's the post office going to do?
You've Got Mail. Well, For Now, Anyway! -- The United States Postal Service (USPS) is asking Congress to close almost 4,000 branches and lay off 120,00 employees. Business, you see, is down. The Postmaster General has pointed to technology as a prime reason, to wit, email has replaced the mailing of letters and bills. Also they've gotten into egregiously bad labor contracts with the Postal Worker's Union. And they are legally barred from just raising postal charges. So what's an organization to do? When it comes to parcel delivery, the USPS doesn't fare any better in our Customer Loyalty Engagement Index.

Changing your mindset.
Salespeople -- change agents? -- "Old, adversarial relationships in which the buyers push for lower prices and higher quality while sellers push for just the opposite are pretty much a hallmark of losers these days," said Noel Tichy, a renowned scholar on leadership. But if you're a hospital SCM professional with procurement responsibilities, how do you bust out of that adversarial mindset when frankly, it may be well justified? I suggest that you get out more often.

No knock-offs in Paris.
After a Long March, Chinese Surrender to Capitalist Shrines -- It was once the Americans, then the Japanese, then the Russians. Now it's the Chinese. In recent months, Paris has been dominated by the Chinese, who have begun to travel abroad in large numbers, and who come here less to eat than to shop. According to Atout France, the French tourism development agency, individual visas are still expensive and restricted for Chinese visitors. So they come mostly on bus tours organized back home, usually for trips of 10 to 15 days that often start in Germany, with stops in Switzerland, Italy or the Netherlands. They almost always end in Paris, and it is in Paris that most do their shopping.

Sheena Moore

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