Marketing the Supply Chain

“The undirected worker spends more of his time walking about for materials and tools than he does in working; he gets small pay because pedestrianism is not a highly paid line.” – Henry Ford

With regards to any discussion involving Supply Chain Management (SCM), the above quote seems appropriate to all of them. Henry Ford was a simple man, but a brilliant one. Born in what is today, Dearborn, Michigan, he spent his early years doing chores around the family farm and later aspired to the job of Chief Engineer for the Edison Illuminating Company. Soon after his marriage to Clara Bryant at the age of 25, he supported his family by running a saw mill. He was a patriotic American, a hard worker, a devoted husband, and a loving father — just like many other men of his time. But Henry Ford was different.

Ford Motor Company came into being in Detroit in 1903. While serving as Vice-President and Chief engineer, the fledgling enterprise produced only a few motorcars a day. Ford is best known for building the Model T – the flagship of the Ford Empire, initiating a new era in personal transportation. In an environment well suited for what we now call SCM, the Ford Motor Company constructed the largest complex in the world of industry on the banks of the Rouge River in Dearborn. It included a steel mill, a glass factory and an automobile assembly line. Iron ore and coal were brought in on Great Lakes’ steamers and by railroad, and used to produce both iron and steel. Rolling mills, forges, and assembly shops transformed the steel into springs, axles, and car bodies. Foundries converted iron into engine blocks and cylinder heads that were assembled with other components into engines. By September 1927, all steps in the manufacturing process from refining raw materials to final assembly of the automobile took place at the vast Rouge Plant, characterizing Henry Ford’s idea of mass production.

He was a man with a dynamic personality and a workaholic to boot. But what he really was, was the father of time-management. After he became proficient with the creation of automobiles, he watched his assemblymen perform their work, and a kind of madness crept over him. In his mind, he began to slice their movements into smaller and smaller pieces; he began to analyze his workers as a microbiologist might study an elephant as being a collection of electrons, revolving around protons and neutrons to form molecules, with DNA guiding the formation of cells using proteins and enzymes to construct tissue, organs, muscle, and bone. Yes, Henry Ford viewed his enterprise as a microcosm of manufacturing that he insisted on managing down to the lowest common denominator.

There is no doubt in my mind that Henry Ford could describe not only the location of each of the 5,000 parts that made up his creations, but for hours he would discuss each part’s purpose in great detail. Even today, there is not one man-made creation that does not begin with a single element that is expanded upon to form the whole. Henry may have started with the idea of building a motor car, but someone, somewhere within his organization had to grasp the first piece of tangible steel and connect it to another, and then to another and another. By following a precise, step-by-step procedure, 5,000 individual parts sprang to life and became a functioning machine. If it performed without error, the plan was considered to be viable, and other machines were built in the exact same way. If a subsequent machine did not function as the others, it was a certainty that at some previous step in the production process, a deviation in the plan had taken place, and by a process of elimination the machine would be inspected through actions of mental and physical dissection until the mistake was discovered and corrected.

Later on, all products were produced in that way. From buggy-whips to televisions, you could go to Sears & Roebuck or to Montgomery Wards, purchase just about anything, and you could expect it to last a lifetime. When something broke, it could be fixed. If you wanted something new, you would just wait until the old one wore completely out before obtaining another – which might take decades.

Today, almost everything we buy is disposable… televisions, radios, CD players… even computers are considered not worth the effort of having them repaired. The boom in American manufacturing has changed our perception of ‘value’. Today, we make things so quickly, before you can get a computer out of its box, it’s already obsolete. Whether planned obsolescence is a purposeful action or a side effect of mass production is a moot point. It has planted itself into our culture as surely as if it were written down in a set of laws we are forced to obey. We accepted this new way of life because it’s cheaper. As a result, when something breaks, we just throw it away and buy another. We have been trained and educated to overlook quality in preference of price.

Businesses are run by boards and stockholders who think only about profit. They have no understanding of the original mission or the plan that created the enterprise they serve. They may not have even been born when the enterprise started. They only care when a factory is not making a profit – close it. If a product has stopped producing cash – add the text “New and Improved”, re-price it, or simply discontinue it. When an employee is not performing to expectations —fire him or her and get another one. Or better still find a machine that can do the same job cheaper. We have turned this throw-away mentality into assumptions that guide our every action.

Men and women long for change, but change terrifies them. They hunger to make things better, but are afraid they will make a mistake which will result in ridicule from their business associates. Any outrageously popular idea is adopted with no thought whatsoever as to the outcome. Do you remember the idiom? “No one ever got fired for buying IBM.” They make short term investments and demand immediate results. They will never understand, as Thomas Edison did when he tested 7,000 materials before making a success of the incandescent light: We MUST fail in order to succeed. This fear of failure guides their actions more than they know. New ideas that come about are too soon flagged as ‘nonsense’, too hard to implement, unnecessary and unpopular. Yet, it is the pathfinders that earn the big bucks. The early adopters reap the lion’s share of the rewards, and only when proven, the ‘me too’ crowd picks up the scraps, usually when it’s about to be replaced by something entirely new.

Attempting to get companies to adapt to Supply Chain Management (SCM) is like herding cats, because it deals with the intricacies that make up an enterprise. Henry Ford understood the advantages of managing the supply chain. Sam Walton did too. Both these men grew up in a different world than those who we deal with today. They came from a world of hard times, sacrifice, struggle, overcoming resistance and chancing ridicule. Today, CEOs live by the mantra of volume instead of quality, immediate profits as opposed to longevity, and gimmicks and tricks in an effort to gain customer loyalty.

Henry Ford understood you have to get up close and personal to the basic elements of your business in order to fix things when they fall apart. Today, you have to treat every product you handle as if its importance was a life or death decision. Colleges and universities don’t teach you what it’s like to crawl in the dirt, sweep the floor when it needs to be swept, clean the toilets when they need to be cleaned, help an old lady carry her purchases to her car when she’s too old and feeble to do it alone. Too important to get their hands dirty, today’s leaders are afraid to peer into the bowels of their organizations. As a result, it is difficult for upper level management to understand SCM. Retailers in particular, have adopted a strategy of passing the buck, allowing others to tell them what products they need to stock and believe that a miracle will occur and gold will begin to pour out of their stores. Is it any wonder so many are going broke?

There are countless elements of SCM that make it difficult to view as a complete environment. A multitude of systems – mechanical, electronic, manual and philosophical must come together in order for SCM to function. Yes, manual and philosophical elements must be of concern because all parts make up the total systems solution. I like Patricia’s phrase ‘intensive cooperation’ because it explains exactly what’s wrong with the supply chain today. Sometimes we learn so much about a system we feel others should understand as easily as we do. We must never forget that our passion to further the advancement of Supply Chain Management is of no concern to the individuals we are trying to steer to our way of thinking. Their concern is to solve problems and increase profits. So when we discuss SCM with others, we need to relate it in a way that does these things specifically.

143 replies

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Don’t click

    […]check beneath, are some absolutely unrelated sites to ours, even so, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  2. SEO specialist

    […]check below, are some absolutely unrelated web sites to ours, even so, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  3. Title

    […]one of our visitors just lately recommended the following website[…]

  4. senegal avec thomas cook

    […]just beneath, are a lot of totally not related websites to ours, nonetheless, they are certainly worth going over[…]

  5. legit internet jobs

    […]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I adore but really don’t get quite a bit of link like from[…]

  6. Its hard to find good help

    I am constantnly saying that its difficult to procure quality help, but here is

  7. Title

    […]Here are a number of the web sites we advise for our visitors[…]

  8. Title

    […]below you will find the link to some websites that we think you should visit[…]

  9. discounts says:

    Title

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine some unrelated information, nevertheless really worth taking a appear, whoa did one find out about Mid East has got much more problerms also […]

  10. bondage flogger

    […]the time to study or go to the material or web pages we have linked to beneath the[…]

  11. Title

    […]below you’ll locate the link to some web-sites that we feel it is best to visit[…]

  12. Title

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine some unrelated information, nevertheless actually really worth taking a search, whoa did a single learn about Mid East has got extra problerms also […]

  13. google cheat says:

    Title

    […]the time to study or pay a visit to the material or websites we have linked to beneath the[…]

  14. which dildo to buy

    […]always a major fan of linking to bloggers that I adore but don’t get a whole lot of link appreciate from[…]

  15. RMUTT says:

    RMUTT

    […]below you’ll locate the link to some internet sites that we think it is best to visit[…]

  16. walmartone says:

    Informative and precise

    Its difficult to find informative and precise information but here I noted

  17. Title

    […]usually posts some very fascinating stuff like this. If you are new to this site[…]

  18. Sripatum university

    […]here are some links to web sites that we link to mainly because we feel they may be worth visiting[…]

  19. bath bimbs says:

    Title

    […]just beneath, are quite a few completely not connected sites to ours, on the other hand, they are surely really worth going over[…]

  20. best sex toys for girls

    […]that is the end of this report. Right here you will find some websites that we believe you will enjoy, just click the hyperlinks over[…]

  21. Just Browsing

    While I was browsing today I saw a great article about

  22. Title

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]

  23. best mini vibrator

    […]we came across a cool web-site which you may take pleasure in. Take a look if you want[…]

  24. sexy toys for women

    […]please take a look at the websites we adhere to, which includes this a single, because it represents our picks through the web[…]

  25. adam and eve shipping label

    […]one of our guests a short while ago proposed the following website[…]

  26. News info

    I was reading the news and I saw this really interesting info

  27. adam and eve sexy lingerie

    […]Here are some of the web pages we recommend for our visitors[…]

  28. adm eve online

    […]very few internet websites that take place to be in depth beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly very well worth checking out[…]

  29. adam and eve free welcome kit

    […]The facts talked about within the write-up are a number of the ideal offered […]

  30. adam and eve coupon

    […]usually posts some very exciting stuff like this. If you are new to this site[…]

  31. adult sex toys

    […]one of our visitors not long ago recommended the following website[…]

  32. adam & eve adult sex toys

    […]check below, are some totally unrelated web sites to ours, nonetheless, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  33. oplata smieciowa warszawa

    […]the time to read or visit the subject material or web sites we have linked to beneath the[…]

  34. best female sex toys

    […]always a large fan of linking to bloggers that I appreciate but do not get a lot of link really like from[…]

  35. Ezmeler says:

    Title

    […]the time to read or stop by the material or web sites we have linked to below the[…]

  36. Virtual Visa and MasterCard.credit card

    […]usually posts some extremely interesting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[…]

  37. online virtual number for whatsapp veriy

    […]The information talked about within the report are several of the very best available […]

  38. walmart1 says:

    Wikia

    Wika linked to this website

  39. thrusting rabbit vibrator

    […]very handful of internet websites that come about to become comprehensive beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly properly really worth checking out[…]

  40. real life sex dolls

    […]always a large fan of linking to bloggers that I love but really don’t get a great deal of link like from[…]

  41. Tumblr article

    I saw someone talking about this on Tumblr and it linked to

  42. Title

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a few unrelated information, nevertheless really really worth taking a appear, whoa did one learn about Mid East has got extra problerms too […]

  43. Google says:

    Google

    We came across a cool web site that you simply could possibly enjoy. Take a search when you want.

  44. Title

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a couple of unrelated data, nevertheless actually worth taking a appear, whoa did 1 learn about Mid East has got a lot more problerms also […]

  45. Title

    […]check below, are some absolutely unrelated internet sites to ours, even so, they’re most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  46. Google says:

    Google

    The time to study or take a look at the material or web-sites we have linked to beneath.

  47. Title

    […]that will be the end of this report. Right here you’ll discover some web pages that we assume you will enjoy, just click the hyperlinks over[…]

  48. Danie says:

    Title

    […]although internet websites we backlink to beneath are considerably not connected to ours, we really feel they are essentially really worth a go as a result of, so possess a look[…]

  49. Title

    […]Sites of interest we’ve a link to[…]

  50. Full Article says:

    Title

    […]usually posts some pretty fascinating stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[…]

  51. kode saham says:

    Title

    […]we came across a cool internet site that you may possibly delight in. Take a appear for those who want[…]

  52. vidfox says:

    Title

    […]Here is a good Blog You might Come across Exciting that we Encourage You[…]

  53. Title

    […]although sites we backlink to beneath are considerably not connected to ours, we feel they may be essentially really worth a go via, so possess a look[…]

  54. Title

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a few unrelated data, nonetheless actually worth taking a search, whoa did one find out about Mid East has got extra problerms as well […]

  55. Arabic songs says:

    Title

    […]always a significant fan of linking to bloggers that I enjoy but don’t get a great deal of link appreciate from[…]

  56. Title

    […]usually posts some quite exciting stuff like this. If you are new to this site[…]

  57. Title

    […]Here are a number of the web pages we suggest for our visitors[…]

  58. Title

    […]we like to honor a lot of other web web-sites around the net, even when they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Below are some webpages really worth checking out[…]

  59. pornwik.com says:

    Title

    […]usually posts some really fascinating stuff like this. If you are new to this site[…]

  60. Dreary Day

    It was a dreary day here today, so I just took to messing around online and realized

  61. Title

    […]please take a look at the sites we comply with, including this a single, as it represents our picks through the web[…]

  62. Title

    […]Here are a few of the websites we suggest for our visitors[…]

  63. Title

    […]please visit the sites we follow, including this one, because it represents our picks in the web[…]

  64. Title

    […]below you will find the link to some web-sites that we believe you’ll want to visit[…]

  65. Polecam says:

    Title

    […]check below, are some totally unrelated web-sites to ours, nevertheless, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  66. Title

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]

  67. Title

    […]the time to read or stop by the subject material or web-sites we’ve linked to below the[…]

  68. walmartone says:

    Dreary Day

    It was a dreary day here today, so I just took to messing around online and realized

  69. Title

    […]we came across a cool web page that you simply may possibly enjoy. Take a search should you want[…]

  70. Title

    […]we like to honor a lot of other world wide web web-sites on the web, even though they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Beneath are some webpages really worth checking out[…]

  71. Radhe Maa says:

    Dreary Day

    It was a dreary day here today, so I just took to piddeling around online and found

  72. true crime says:

    Title

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a number of unrelated data, nevertheless genuinely worth taking a search, whoa did one discover about Mid East has got more problerms as well […]

  73. duvporn says:

    Title

    […]here are some hyperlinks to web-sites that we link to since we consider they’re worth visiting[…]

  74. Hicks says:

    Title

    […]we came across a cool web-site that you just could possibly enjoy. Take a appear in case you want[…]

  75. Wikia

    Wika linked to this website

  76. Title

    […]please check out the web sites we stick to, such as this a single, because it represents our picks through the web[…]

  77. News info

    I was reading the news and I saw this really interesting information

  78. Blackhat says:

    Title

    […]we came across a cool web-site which you could enjoy. Take a appear for those who want[…]

  79. Title

    […]The data mentioned inside the write-up are a number of the best available […]

  80. Title

    […]although sites we backlink to beneath are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[…]

  81. Social Media says:

    News info

    I was reading the news and I saw this really interesting information

  82. Title

    […]here are some links to internet sites that we link to mainly because we think they may be really worth visiting[…]

  83. Title

    […]that could be the end of this write-up. Right here you’ll locate some sites that we believe you will appreciate, just click the hyperlinks over[…]

  84. Title

    […]Every the moment in a while we decide on blogs that we study. Listed below are the latest sites that we opt for […]

  85. Title

    […]always a huge fan of linking to bloggers that I like but do not get quite a bit of link really like from[…]

  86. Title

    […]we like to honor many other net websites on the web, even when they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some webpages worth checking out[…]

  87. Title

    […]please take a look at the web pages we adhere to, including this a single, as it represents our picks through the web[…]

  88. Title

    […]always a significant fan of linking to bloggers that I appreciate but do not get a good deal of link adore from[…]

  89. Title

    […]here are some hyperlinks to internet sites that we link to for the reason that we consider they’re worth visiting[…]

  90. Title

    […]just beneath, are a lot of absolutely not connected web-sites to ours, nevertheless, they’re surely worth going over[…]

  91. Title

    […]one of our guests a short while ago suggested the following website[…]

  92. Looking around

    I like to browse around the web, regularly I will go to Stumble Upon and read and check stuff out

  93. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]although web-sites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are really worth a go through, so possess a look[…]

  94. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]we prefer to honor a lot of other net web pages on the internet, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Beneath are some webpages worth checking out[…]

  95. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]

  96. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]Here is a good Weblog You might Locate Interesting that we Encourage You[…]

  97. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]always a huge fan of linking to bloggers that I like but really don’t get a lot of link appreciate from[…]

  98. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]below you’ll come across the link to some websites that we think you need to visit[…]

  99. Title

    […]Sites of interest we’ve a link to[…]

  100. coat hanger says:

    Title

    […]Here are a few of the sites we suggest for our visitors[…]

  101. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]that is the finish of this write-up. Right here you’ll obtain some internet sites that we believe you’ll value, just click the links over[…]

  102. News info

    I was reading the news and I saw this really cool topic

  103. Title

    […]the time to study or pay a visit to the material or web-sites we have linked to below the[…]

  104. Oddsmonkey says:

    Title

    […]one of our visitors lately advised the following website[…]

  105. USAA Bank says:

    Digg

    While checking out DIGG yesterday I found this

  106. News info

    I was reading the news and I saw this really interesting topic

  107. Title

    […]that will be the finish of this write-up. Here you will come across some web pages that we feel you will value, just click the links over[…]

  108. Title

    […]check beneath, are some entirely unrelated internet websites to ours, however, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[…]

  109. link98 says:

    Title

    […]below you will come across the link to some web sites that we believe it is best to visit[…]

  110. Title

    […]the time to read or pay a visit to the content or websites we’ve linked to below the[…]

  111. Title

    […]Every after in a while we pick out blogs that we read. Listed below are the most recent web sites that we decide on […]

  112. Title

    […]one of our guests not too long ago suggested the following website[…]

  113. پنجره says:

    Title

    […]always a major fan of linking to bloggers that I adore but don’t get lots of link adore from[…]

  114. دانلود says:

    Title

    […]usually posts some extremely intriguing stuff like this. If you are new to this site[…]

  115. game free says:

    Dreary Day

    It was a dreary day here today, so I just took to messing around on the internet and found

  116. Title

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a couple of unrelated information, nevertheless actually worth taking a search, whoa did 1 master about Mid East has got more problerms at the same time […]

  117. Title

    […]just beneath, are various totally not related internet sites to ours, nevertheless, they may be certainly really worth going over[…]

  118. Title

    […]here are some links to sites that we link to simply because we think they’re really worth visiting[…]

  119. pornmd says:

    Title

    […]one of our visitors not long ago proposed the following website[…]

  120. Title

    […]below you will locate the link to some web pages that we feel you should visit[…]

  121. Deal Feed says:

    Title

    […]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I appreciate but don’t get a lot of link really like from[…]

  122. Title

    […]Here are several of the web sites we suggest for our visitors[…]

  123. Title

    […]although internet sites we backlink to below are considerably not connected to ours, we feel they’re in fact really worth a go via, so have a look[…]

  124. SkinAlley says:

    Title

    […]we prefer to honor quite a few other world-wide-web sites around the web, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Beneath are some webpages really worth checking out[…]

  125. Title

    […]here are some links to sites that we link to since we consider they are really worth visiting[…]

  126. Title

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]

  127. Title

    […]we prefer to honor a lot of other web sites on the internet, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Beneath are some webpages worth checking out[…]

  128. Title

    […]Sites of interest we’ve a link to[…]

  129. Title

    […]please take a look at the web pages we adhere to, such as this one, as it represents our picks from the web[…]

  130. Title

    […]Every when in a when we opt for blogs that we read. Listed beneath are the newest web pages that we select […]

  131. Title

    […]Here are some of the web sites we advise for our visitors[…]

  132. Title

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]

  133. Title

    […]The information talked about in the write-up are a few of the most beneficial accessible […]

  134. Title

    […]here are some hyperlinks to web-sites that we link to for the reason that we think they may be really worth visiting[…]

  135. Title

    […]please pay a visit to the websites we comply with, like this 1, as it represents our picks in the web[…]

  136. headhunting says:

    Title

    […]usually posts some incredibly fascinating stuff like this. If you are new to this site[…]

  137. Title

    […]always a major fan of linking to bloggers that I enjoy but do not get a good deal of link adore from[…]

  138. Title

    […]we like to honor lots of other internet web-sites around the net, even when they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Below are some webpages worth checking out[…]

  139. Title

    […]please go to the web sites we follow, such as this one particular, as it represents our picks in the web[…]

  140. Title

    […]Here is a superb Weblog You might Discover Exciting that we Encourage You[…]

  141. پنجره says:

    Title

    […]we prefer to honor many other web web pages on the internet, even though they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Below are some webpages really worth checking out[…]

  142. Title

    […]Here are some of the sites we advocate for our visitors[…]

  143. Title

    […]one of our guests not long ago proposed the following website[…]

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply