Procurement Skills – 4 Keys to Increasing Your Personal Productivity

Your personal productivity is the key to demonstrating why your organisation should continue to invest in you. You can think of your personal productivity as the value you add divided by the time over which you add it. The more value you can create in a given time period, the greater your productivity. There are four essential keys that you can use to unlock further personal productivity in your procurement activity.

1. Reach. This is a measure of the number of people who receive the value you add; the greater the number of people who are impacted, the greater your productivity. You need to identify the recipients of the value you create and make sure that they understand who has generated it and also that they appreciate it. Show them how your value helps them to achieve their goals and objectives.

2. Recency. This refers to the time that has passed since you last created value. Value created last year has much less impact than value created yesterday and so shows less productivity. Ask yourself whether the value you create is quickly consumed and forgotten by the recipient or whether it is something they continue to use. For example, if the value you added was to give someone some procurement advice about a contract six months ago, in all probability they will have forgotten by now. If the value is quickly consumed you need to assess what further value you can add for this group of people.

3. Core. This is what is at the heart of the value you add. For example, the core of the value you add when managing suppliers could be to reduce risk to your organisation or it could be to deliver innovation from the supply market. This core is of much greater value than one which eases the administrative burden for others when raising a purchase order. Write a succinct statement of what the core of your value is for each group of people you impact and relate it to their goals and objectives or even your corporate objectives.

4. Quantity. The greater the number of times you have created value, the greater your personal productivity. For example, if you create just one sourcing strategy a year you will be less productive than if you create six of them.

Conceptually, your personal productivity is the result of multiplying together the outputs from these four keys and dividing by the time period it took to achieve them. Although there is no mathematical basis for this, it does give you a subjective feel for whether or not you are increasing your personal productivity and also a means of explaining to others why it has increased.

Facilitators: Types of Facilitation Services Offered

Facilitators are a remarkably savvy business management resource, enlisted by organizations of all sizes. Understanding the types of facilitation services offered by professionals is an excellent way of determining which fit your specific business goals.

Conference Facilitation and Planning

Conferences are a common way of formally bringing people within a company or industry together to discuss new business ideas and opportunities. These services assist with building program agendas, gathering marketing and promotional materials, and scheduling sessions or speakers. They are highly desired by companies that struggle with time management issues and the amount of planning required to host or attend these conferences.

Strategic Planning

Strategic planning is an intricate process rather than an event in which a company and coordinator develop a projected long-term goal to increase business productivity. A well-organized strategy enables dialogue, opposition, positive feedback, and the mutual efforts of all internal company departments with a continued focus on the future. Organizations often recruit facilitators to ease the incorporation of a strategic plan during times they expect resistance from employees, such as drastic procedure changes and industry adaptation.

Team Building

Team building is a process used by facilitators and targeted toward increasing cooperation, teamwork, and camaraderie within a work unit to boost employee morale and positive collaboration. As business owners realize each member of a team plays an integral role of the company’s success, professionals are desired to introduce and monitor team building exercises with themes like creativity, brainstorming, problem solving, and trust. Designed to be stimulating, light-hearted and fun, coordinators are often able to pinpoint where a work unit’s social weaknesses lie based on how well they work with or against each other in each situation.

Conflict Resolution

Conflict is often the result of basic differences. Occurring whenever people disagree about personal motivation, perception, value, or ideas within the workplace, an unresolved employee issue can have severely damaging effects on the entire group. Business owners cannot afford to compromise productivity as a result, and strive to rectify the conflict with professional assistance. Conflict resolution services are a valuable part of the facilitation solution for an inevitable problem, offering a neutral party to mediate and settle disagreements diplomatically.

Process Improvement

Process improvement is a systematic approach to help companies fine-tune their underlying procedures to achieve more efficient results. Coordinators take what is normally a tedious and time consuming task off of the business owner’s shoulders to learn about each employee’s role, responsibilities, and method of carrying them out in search of more time and cost efficient ways of operating.

Focus Group Management

A focus group is a form of qualitative research in which an outside group of people are asked about their perceptions, opinions, beliefs, and attitude toward a company’s products. Facilitators organize and plan which questions will produce the most beneficial and informative results for a company that may be struggling to meet consumers’ desires and preferences.

Partnering Sessions

Partnering session facilitation services are a professional and ideal means of support for business owners rekindling a former financial and legal partnership, or establishing a brand new professional relationship.

Group Facilitators Create Results by Encouraging Attendee Participation

Getting a group of people to work together with the purpose of achieving a common goal is often an obstacle for businesses. Facilitators may be incorporated into a workshop as a way to encourage positive participation in the workplace. Group facilitators help all participants with applying practical skills, problem resolution, and productivity issues. When the goal of a session is to put all these items to better use in future team collaborations, the process is commonly called a facilitated workshop. These sessions are advantageous any time a business is attempting to manage organizational changes.

A facilitation expert is included to remove existing barriers and to assist with goal achievement. Workshops help employees become motivated and create interaction that promotes a productive environment. Working relationships are improved due to the sense of belonging these professionals provide during the process. Many techniques are used throughout the building session to ensure it is a success.

How Do Facilitator Techniques Increase Collaboration?

The techniques applied by facilitators are an attempt to encourage each individual to constructively participate along with the rest of the group. A professional will first identify the objectives to be accomplished through the workshop. Flexibility is important in regards to participant schedules and goal achievement. If the facilitator is too focused on time or rushes into deliberations too quickly, less successful results will follow throughout the session.

Games are a common tool used before a meeting commences because it removes tension from the atmosphere. When individuals have to work together to win a game, they often have an easier time opening up and becoming comfortable around each other. These little breathers also promote teamwork, communication, and compromise.

Complex problem solving where the resolution is broken down into small pieces may be another used technique. Facilitators present the problem on a large scale and then break it into smaller manageable components. A section of the problem is assigned to each group so they can come up with a solution. By removing the intimidation of a big issue, the entire team is able to solve the complex problem. Some participants are not as willing to take part in the workshop. A facilitator typically identifies social unrest to provide additional encouragement to contribute to the group.

Visual tools are another tactic used during the facilitation process. Participant numbers are often limited to ten people because this count ensures all attendees are involved. Techniques vary based on the personal style of the professional and the overall objective of the workshop.

Group facilitatorsmust be self-aware, friendly, communicative, and open to provide needed results. Any business can set up a workshop to improve team work or decision making abilities. Some services provide a program for this type of facilitation designed to include one or many series of workshops. A company can also set up their own event and locate a facilitator to assist with developing a team building or staff enhancement session. Businesses often find these processes to be more rewarding when a qualified professional is used. With a little research, any type of collaborative session should be a success.