Starting out

When people start a business, they go in guns blazing with business plans, market research, networking and advertising.  They find vendors, open lines of credit, and start closing jobs. After a few months and some success, all those things seem to get shelved for “more pressing” needs.

Owners wear lots of hats, and the things that drive immediate income take precedence over everything else.  When you only spend $30,000 in a year on materials, leaving 10-20% on the table isn’t as painful as when you spend $300,000 or $3,000,000.

Businesses evolve and change over time and their needs change, but purchasing seems to get neglected.  As long as product shows up and complaints from the field are minimal, all is well.

But is it? When was the last time an owner, partner, or C-level executive took a hard look at the market (or markets) they are working in to compare vendors?

Continue reading 12 Steps to Fixing Your Purchasing

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Project Management Triangle, Iron Triangle, Triple Constraint

Price, quality, speed – choose two.  We’ve seen this “rule” written and rewritten in different ways since the 1950’s, when the Project Management Triangle first appeared.  Also known as the Triple Constraint or the Iron Triangle, it is a simple way to define the complex mix between time, cost and quality.  “You get what you pay for” is a cliché everyone knows, but people keep trying to change the dynamic in their favor.

We’ve all seen signs and internet meme’s stating something like this;

We offer 3 kinds of service

Good – Cheap – Fast

You can pick any two

Good service cheap won’t be fast

Good service fast won’t be cheap

Fast service cheap won’t be good

For many building materials buyers, this “rule” is an absolute fact.  However, I believe that with proper planning and the right vendor relationships, it doesn’t have to be.

Continue reading You Get What You Pay For…Usually

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