By Sean Culey
Theory has little value unless it can be successfully translated into everyday execution.
“Real artists ship.”
Scrawled on an easel in January 1983 by Steve Jobs, this message was directed at his Apple team who were months overdue on launching the first Macintosh computer. He wanted them to understand that their innovations were worthless unless successfully transformed into products that the customer could buy. Innovation needs execution. Decades later, that message is now more important than ever. Globalisation means that Supply Chains have become increasingly complex and carry increased levels of internal and external risk. Volatility and turbulence is the new norm, placing even more emphasis on a business’s ability to deliver. The only certainty is that uncertainty will increase.
The recent spate of supply disruptions caused by natural, social and economic factors has proven that shareholder and market value is intrinsically linked to the business’s ability to maintain supply at a level that the customer associates as being ‘of value’. Companies now need to be both highly disciplined in execution, and have agility to respond to demand deviations and supply disruptions. The relentless ‘growth at all costs’ and ‘always lowest cost’ mindset has created organisations that may achieve short term results, but lack sufficient control of their end-to-end Supply Chains in order to successfully compete in the long term.