Have you ever been in a situation where you are the only expert, but nobody listens to you? Puzzling, right? It’s like being the only pilot on a plane and receiving skeptical and even blaming comments from those who never piloted.
Well, welcome to the world of procurement experts. While procurement is significant for any country, company or organization, procurement experts are usually those who are misunderstood and neglected.
So, how can a procurement expert broadcast his message to the rest of the organization?
Hint 1. Try “kindergarten” tactics.
Senior managers are often like kids. You have to explain everything by bringing vivid examples, applying scenarios and linking your stories to their favorite toys. For example, if your boss drives a Porsche, explain how many Porsches he would potentially save if he followed your advice.
Hint 2. Use competitors’ stories.
Share success stories from competitor companies or organizations. Sometimes common sense and logic are useless, but simple human ego may create magic. Years of your procurement experience may say nothing to your management, until it discovers someone else from a different organization applied a method (which you, actually, mentioned a few times) and reached some good results.
Hint 3. Pilot your own case.
Prove you are right by testing and applying what you suggested on a smaller case. If your organization is not ready to give the entire “procurement city” to you, take a part of it and create your own Central Park and Manhattan. Sooner or later the remaining parts of the city will want to become the second Manhattan or Central Park.
Hint 4. Describe possible risks.
Even if your colleagues are idiots and they think they can pilot better, you will have this session for the record. So, when they end up with a trouble (which you forecasted), they will listen to you next time around.
Hint 5. Go to the mattresses
If nothing from above helps, relax and follow what your management says. Until your organization pays a lot of money and hires an external procurement consultant who will eventually tell what you already told many times.