After ten years marketing for software companies, I made the decision to change course and to join LeanPie, a company that is setting out to transform the supply chain for the sourcing of retail fixtures and Point of Purchase equipment. When I mentioned this to a colleague, she immediately assumed I was going to focus on delivering a software solution rather than focusing on the actual manufacture of hardware items like shelving and gondola end units. When I explained the vision for LeanPie, she was surprised. So why the move?
What is interesting about software is that it is, in general, an enabler. It helps us achieve the same things but cheaper, to a higher quality and faster. However, recent evidence is proving that business has not been very efficient at applying and using all the advantages that software can provide to improve commercial productivity. A recent article by Neil Irwin in the New York Times provides an interesting perspective on what is happening in his article “Why Is Productivity So Weak? Three Theories”
Another perspective is provided by Yves Morieux, of the Boston Consulting Group, who presented this fantastic Ted talk called “How too many rules at work keep you from getting things done.” I really like the way that he uses the example of a 400m relay team as to me this is a great metaphor for how a supply chain works.
The reality is that the real value of software is in how it is applied to transform a business rather than in its potential. This is where my real interest lies, in being able to use a great software solution to significantly change the way that an existing market works. This takes the combination of well thought-through processes combined with very skilled and talented people and then enabled with a great software solution. This sits at the heart of what LeanPie is setting out to achieve and in very simple terms, it is about enhancing the productivity for the sourcing of non-core materials.
Every day we will place productivity at the forefront of our agenda and through this we hope we will improve the productivity for the companies and suppliers we serve so everyone across the supply chain from substrate suppliers to customers will benefit.