Thursday, November 23, 2006

Small is the new Big

I am always amazed at the viral nature of the internet. A few months ago I wrote an article called "3 must-red books for bloggers". That article is now mentioned 348 times on different internet sites.

One of the authors I spoke about in that article was Debbie Weil. She has a good podcast interview with Mike Sippey.

It is great that articles propogate. I am just now sure how much that helps SYNNEX. Definitely increases our profile.

I read an awesome book on strategy by Seth Godin on the flight here called "Small is the New Big and 183 other riffs, rants and remarkable business ideas".

I seem to be drawn to strategy books lately. Strategy is what I am thinking about. Being in a low margin business makes me think.

Seth's challenge is to be truly unique, edgy, new, add value. He give many examples of companies who have done this. Part of what he pushed is the next big idea. I like that but also know ideas are cheap, excellent implementation is what is difficult. I am a big believer in acting small but being big. Take the best from both worlds.

Seth's challenge on CEO blogs are they need to offer at least 4 of the following 6:

Candor
Urgency
Timeliness
Pithiness
Controversy
Utility

To that, I would consider adding humour. People never mind that.

Thinking about how I stack up...

I loved his comments on lawns. Why have a lawn? Just because everyone else does. Of course those who know me well know I have no lawn and grow strawberries, squash, potatoes etc on the "front lawn". Probably drives the chemlawn neighbours crazy. Just FYI, this is definitely not a time saver. It takes more work to care for a garden.

Overall - an excellent highly recommended read.

Now my question to you. What strategies might SYNNEX employ to be unique, add value etc?

2 Comments:

At 5:36 PM, Anonymous Kevin said...

Some ideas,

1) Stop being the Me Too disti. leave that to whoever wants to do that, sure there is a place for that in fulfillment etc, in the business model, because this is part of what you do, however, if you want your clients to be profitable, sustainable over the next 3-5 years, when there will be a huge reduction in them, it is important that the razor thin margins get fattened up a bit for everyone involved. Bring some real solutions that getting to a place where they will become mainstream to the resellers( professionals )that are willing to embrace them, make them a team, treat them like a team. Have a draft - don't base the draft on volume, base it on profitability.

2) Add REAL VALUE to clients, faster, cheaper, etcc... isn't always what clients want. Seek out the Resellers(Professionals) that are truly adding value to the clients - make strong connections and commitments to them with the vendors involved. This takes a lot of time investment, however, once invested, it is not easy or favourable for a client to want to change primary suppliers.

3) Derive real value from manufacturers that want to "sell" their products through Synnex to Synnexs' captive audience(Team). Instead of the Manufacturers giving back end dollars, have them measured on how they assist your clients(Team) drive tangible increases in results. The results will increase to assist Synnex in hitting the clip levels required to make the rebate levels in effect. Have the Manufacturers - Sponsor the team.

4) Somehow, get the Resellers ( professionals) engaged in a single unified Brand, with multiple areas inside that brand, thats where the real value will be, and design an exit strategy and a legacy for the(owners/team members), people with 15-20 yrs experience, are very valuable resources and usually as entrepreneurs that have this level of experience, wish to be part of something larger, with the ability to move fast and win. Entrepreneurs love to create and Win.

5) Keep the ideas flowing in some form of forum with these people that really want to connect with Synnex. Its' not everyday that a CEO is willing to or makes the time to speak to others like you do. I don't think most people in the business that can add significant value to synnex, really know this. How about " A day with Jim" once a quarter or every six months. High quality time, with lots of creative people, all on the ground running.
Doesn't get better than that to really understand the pulse of the country.

6) Ask these people what is making these people successful, in a private forum of some kind. What Synnex can do to assist them and how it will assist Synnex. Decide quickly whether these ideas can be implemented and execute them rapidly. Everyone wants to win, once the people understand Synnex is there to help them Win, they will open up.

7) Team SYNNEX - Made up of Professionals, not resellers or VARS. That is one of the biggest challenges today, most smaller resellers are treated like they have no concern for the clients, if you canvass clients I am certain that will be the answer in the SMB market, of which Canada is comprised of for the most part. They need to be elevated to the status of an accountant/lawyer/engineer. Imagine, people with 15 years training/experience and ZERO recognition for it. Highly demotivating, turn that around - make it a badge of honour in the least and some form of designation at a higher level.

thats it for now. lots of ideas, just need to execute.

 
At 9:05 AM, Anonymous Ellen Weber said...

Great post Jim, and thanks for the inspiration!

I'm especially glad to see that you are into strategies - as that is where we focus 99% of attention at the MITA Brain Center.

Most Leaders use strategies that work against their own brains, and that impacts business. To create strategies that work with the brain is to prosper people as capital and productivity as dividends. For instance, meetings would look very different if run with brain based facilitation strategies? What do you think?

Keep up the brilliant work, Jim!

 

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