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Managing people

Get to know your suppliers better

By The Taskmaster
Thursday, 11 November 2010

The Taskmaster says get to know your suppliersMany SMEs have a strange and sometimes strained relationship with their suppliers, and for one very good reason – suppliers can make or break a business.


Think about it.


If your supplier suddenly has a problem and can’t sell you stuff, your business can be crippled. If a supplier suddenly jacks up their prices, your margins take a hit. If a supplier suddenly decides outright that they are not going to sell to you (you might be too small, or they might get a new deal with a competitor) then you may be in a lot of trouble.


It stands to reason then that building a close and constructive relationship with your suppliers is going to be very positive for your business. If you take the time to get to know how your supplier’s business works, where their pressure points are and how they see their business growing, then you’ll find at the very least that the information starts to flow a lot more freely.


You’ll learn about price increases earlier, and prepare for them better. When supply problems hit, you might be the first to get your goods. And if the supplier knows how your business is growing and performing, they can be ready to ramp up or make changes to help you out.


So don’t take an us-and-them approach – build a real relationship, and reap the rewards.


Get it done – today!

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