The lonely road to success
Both as a business and personally, we tend to spend little time looking at what others in our industry do or even how distributors in other sectors operate. The activity of benchmarking not only pre-supposes that, a) competitors may be doing things better than you, but also, b) what they do will suit our business.
Given that the benchmarking approach facilitates comparison, albeit potentially flawed, since the reference is only relatively better or worse, the approach that we have adopted is to gather intelligence and feedback from the stakeholders in our market and then to evolve our business to meet the requirements in the best way possible. Our approach requires that alternative sources of feedback are obtained, and often it is necessary to ‘keep the faith’ when short-term performance indicators may be sending information that would appear to contradict that which creates value in terms of price, reliability and service.
At the beginning of 2015 we received reassuring feedback from our customer satisfaction survey and also some ‘golden nuggets’ of information which indicated that, on a number of important initiatives, we were indeed pursuing the right path. This coupled with receiving very positive feedback on how professional Plastribution is, the recent recruitment of a new team member who unusually was previously employed by one of our competitors and the outstanding performance of our main logistics partner who regularly exceeds a 99.5% OTIF performance, all proves that we moving in the right direction.
Most recently I presented a paper at the forum of the ICIS 5th Global Polyolefins Conference and was particularly pleased when one of the delegates, who was well versed in polymer distribution, specifically sought me out in order to provide very positive feedback about what he had learnt about Plastribution as a result of the presentation.
The timing of this feedback could not have been better given the ‘availability’ challenges the industry faced in 2015 and the impact of those challenges on our operation. With our faith restored, we will continue to fine tune our service offering to allow us to serve your business even better. Your ongoing feedback is always welcomed.