Managing Value Chains During the COVID-19 Pandemic

In order to strengthen a business, it is crucial to find out what the customers really want and operationalise this information. Aligning buyer specifications with operations is a key element when a company wants to improve their business. Alumni of the MP learned this and much more during an online seminar.

Innovation Consultant Dr. Jeff Readman

As part of the seminar series on “Managing Value Chains During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Challenges and Possible Opportunities”, Innovation Consultant Dr. Jeff Readman gave the second online-seminar to the alumni of the Manager Training Programme (MP). After the first seminar “Introduction to Value Chains and How to Use this Framework to Areas to Improve”, this course focussed on the improvement of a company’s market performance through customer information and preferences. The participants – programme alumni from Georgia and Iran – got to apply examples from their own companies, engage with one another and share experiences.

How to use buyer information for improvements

As one mode of operation, Dr. Readman introduced the 9-Point Importance Scale. It asks buyers and customers to evaluate the performance of the company through a questionnaire. Thereby, the company receives direct information from their customers on whether they are living up to their objectives. They can find out what is most important to their customers and how well they are performing in this area. Upon this basis, the company is able to align importance and performance and identify areas to improve.

The participants were intrigued by the input they received. Rahil Radfar from Iran concluded: “What I really liked about the seminar was the warm atmosphere and the opportunity that we had to personally talk to each other. I have gained new insights associated with how to evaluate our performance and also our supplier’s performance. I am pretty sure by applying the points that were discussed in today's seminar, we will be able to raise the level of satisfaction of our customers.”

Dr. Jeff Readman explained how the 9-Point Importance Scale helps the company to align importance and performance.

Series of online seminars

The professional online-seminar series for MP alumni encompasses three seminar topics which are composed of three seminars each: 1. Global Value Chains; 2. Boosting your business through the online presence; and 3. Marketing and Sales in three Branches – Agricultural, Beauty & Wellness, Architecture. All three online courses were especially designed to provide alumni of the Programme with skills for strengthening their businesses and support them in their cooperation with German companies during the COVID-19 crisis.

Supply chain management is concerned with the flow of information and the flow of products and services.