Sacked by Supply Management – the final part (honest!)

Yes, I know, it's getting boring, so I promise I won't go on about this after today.  In part 2 I explained the logic - from CIPS and Supply Management's perspective - of excluding me as a 'competitor', which I do understand.  But today to wrap things up I will focus on two dangers in the approach CIPS and SM seem to be taking.

The first, for CIPS, is this.  We live in a complex, rapidly changing world. In business, competitors become 'partners'; ancient enemies become allies to fight new threats; my biggest rival becomes a valued business partner.  But if CIPS takes the stance that anyone 'competing' with them gets excluded from their sphere of influence, and p**s people off too much,  they may burn their boats in terms of the opportunity for potential future collaborations (see Jason's comment here about ISM, and indeed the other comments on my first post on this topic as evidence that not everyone loves the Institute).

And even organisations who have not experienced this may think twice about working with CIPS if they perceive that the future relationship could easily turn sour if they ever move somehow into a competitive situation.

Then there's SM magazine.  Here, it is even more clear-cut.  What my experience - unimportant in the greater scheme of things - has shown is that Supply Management's first overarching editorial principle is NOT "what would our readers most like to see / find most useful / interesting?"

Overlaying that is the condition "as long as it doesn't come from anyone who competes with us".  Now that may not matter much of the time, but it is important.  And that's why you won't see anything from me, from Procurement Leaders, or perhaps from other providers who compete with CIPS or SM in the magazine.

So as long as readers understand this, that's fine.  And before anyone asks, Spend Matters absolutely 100% commits that the 'interest / usefulness to readers' is our 100% ethos.  Yes, we will write about sponsors, when there is something interesting to report; but we will write about anyone and anything we think is worth a few hundred words.  That will include 'competitors' like SM, CIPS, Procurement Leaders, Forrester, Horses for Sources, ISM, other consulting or non-sponsoring technology firms...etc.  (Do a search on our 'solution providers' tag to see evidence of the breadth of organisations we've featured already!)

Which means, quite simply, if you want to read truly independent material, written by real procurement practitioners, to get the whole picture, without any no-go areas, make it Spend Matters.

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Voices (5)

  1. Darren:

    Hurrah! That’s what I love about social media – common sense prevails. Well said Philip and I’m glad you’ve decided to end your rant Peter. I hope you feel better now!

  2. Peter Smith:

    Sound words as usual from you! Thanks for taking the time to write – and to think carefully about the issues, which comes thorugh in your comments.
    I’m not sure 3 posts is ‘incessant’ mind you – you should see me when I get really cross! And I agree with you on the reach of CIPS and SM, which is terrific, and is one of the reasons I was disappointed to be excluded from the opportunity to contribute to that wide audience.
    But you’re right generally, and that, as I said, is the end of it on Spend Matters. Best wishes, Peter

  3. Philip Orumwense:

    Peter – interestingly you are a past CIPS president and one of the reknown procurement expert practitioners with a professional pedigree that sets you head and shoulder above the rest of us – present company included. That said, the constant and incessant bashing of CIPS and SM in my opinion can only serve one purpose and this is the will full debasement of the professionalism of our noble profession.

    CIPS and SM do serve a very niche market which the social media world as expansive as they may be can never reach. The reason i say this is this – my nomination as CIPS Procurement and Supply Chain Professional of the year had a reach that extended beyond the shores of the internet, especially to people in Africa, Asia, parts of Australia and elsewhere. They provide a vehicle for reaching the mass of our procurement experts, practitioners and academics which in turn helps to perpetuate some of the most basic doctrines, ethics, trends, fads and most importantly learnings that our profession and elder statesmen, stalwarts and veterans like you have to offer and share.

    It is true and perceptively so that one have to be on the inside to be able to make a significant difference to issues and matters that affects the organisation that one wants to change, that said, there is room for complementary environments such as what Spend Matters have on offer to what is on offer from CIPS and SM.

    It is probably time to call a truce and move on from this severed relationship which can be resurrected again at a mutually convinient moment – perhaps over a few beverages.

    I most certainly welcome your attempt to ensure that CIPS and SM remains accountable to the people they seek they serve and as a Fellow of the institute I will welcome such accountability and channels for lodging, discussing and resolving such matters of disagreements either through a duly constituted arbitration panels or through those who we have collectively elected to serve our interests on the CIPS Board.

  4. Purchasing Insight:

    This has been an interesting thread. For me, demonstrates how 20th century CIPS and SM are.

    Last century, we were characterized by the newspaper we read. In the 21st century we consume our media in entirely different ways. We use twitter, google reader, blogs and websites. Sometimes we pay for it.

    The Supply Management model is still to think that if people read Spend Matters, or any of the other fine and free purchasing resources on the internet, they won’t read SM. Wrong!

    If you opt out of the internet eco system and act like an arrogant , self serving, monopolistic dinosaur – then people won’t read you.

    I’ not emotional about all of this – I vote with my feet.

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