How To Sustainability Value Beyond Savings

026: Introduction to CSR: How Can Procurement Facilitate Small Business Growth, with Stan Litow, President of the IBM Foundation

On this weeks episode of The Art Of Procurement, my guests are Stan Litow and Tim Coates.

Stan is the Vice President of Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs at IBM, and the President of IBM Foundation. Tim is an executive within the IBM Foundation, with the responsibility of managing their Supplier Connection program.

Today’s discussion talks about corporate philanthropy and corporate social responsibility – or CSR – and what large private enterprises can do to help spur small business growth, and the impact that has on local economies. We talk about why this is important, the challenges that big businesses face in working with small companies, and some of the benefits including increased access to innovative products and services.

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“Companies looking at their supply chain practices  can generate a significant amount of opportunity and growth for small businesses, or women and minority owned businesses, by focusing their spending in a way that produces a multiplier effect.” 

In this episode, you will learn:

  • What can large private enterprises can do to help spur small business growth, and the impact that has on local economies.
  • The challenges that big businesses face in working with small companies, and some of the benefits including increased access to innovative products and services.
  • What role procurement can play in helping facilitate partnerships between large and small companies.
  • How procurement leaders have influenced CSR initiatives.
  • Why is the role of procurement in promoting small business growth so important.
  • What IBM does in their business to promote small business growth.
  • What can other businesses learn or take away from what IBM does in terms of supporting small business growth.
  • What the benefits of supplier connection is to member companies, and to participating small businesses.
  • What challenges do small businesses face while working with larger organizations. On the flip side, what challenges do big businesses face while working with smaller companies.
  • Do procurement processes, or big business requirements make it too onerous for a small business to work with a larger company.
  • Is there a perception of increased risk in working with smaller companies. How should larger companies mitigate these risks?
  • Where should companies who are interested in increasing spend with companies in the local communities start.
  • Minimum spend thresholds or minimum commitments for organizations in terms of spend they will drive through the Supplier Connection program, and how they can start the conversation with Supplier Connection.

Episode Transcript (PDF):

  • Click here to download a copy of today’s episode transcript (PDF).

Links and Resources:

Thanks for Listening!

 

About the author

Philip Ideson

Philip Ideson is passionate about the role that procurement professionals and leaders can plan in creating competitive advantage for their organizations in ways that go beyond the traditional value proposition.

Philip founded Art of Procurement as a way for the procurement community to learn from each other, increasing the impact they have on their organizations. In 2017, he co-founded Palambridge, a virtual platform of procurement experts, technology, and intelligence. Palambridge provides a broad range of flexible procurement solutions, available on-demand.

Prior to Art of Procurement and Palambridge, Philip enjoyed a career that spanned the procurement value chain, working across three continents for organizations such as Accenture, Procurian, Ally Financial, Pfizer and Ford Motor Company.

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