Joint business planning with a UK supermarket
Entering into a Joint Business Plan with a UK supermarket can be Daunting
Joint Business Plans, or JBP’s, have become a common term among supermarkets and their suppliers.
Some parties embrace them in a collaborative spirit with the aim of win:win, whilst others see it as a terms negotiation under a different name.
Joint business plans can be, if approached in the right way, a means to achieve more for the supermarket, the supplier and the shopper.
There is a brave approach to a joint business plan that can achieve the rare win:win:win.
Here are 7 brave moves to take when writing a joint business plan with a UK supermarket:
1. Stating the blindingly obvious – It’s all about trust
Understanding the trust model is key to understanding who you trust, why you trust them, or don’t trust them, and how you can build more trust together.
The brave move is to openly discuss trust at the start.
2. KISS is the route that succeeds most
The opportunity to jointly business plan can be seen as the ‘answer to all our prayers’ with the temptation to create a document that is the ultimate plan.
The brave move is to write a simple document. Maybe just one page.
3. Naming the Big Project Outcomes is the Key to Success
Identifying the big projects that will achieve the category objectives is the key to success and avoiding discussing all the other issues.
The brave move is to identify the 80:20 of projects and stick to it.
4. Simple Dashboard Every 2 Weeks to Keep Things Moving
Many business plans are painstakingly written together, debated, thrashed, negotiated and fought, only to be left on the shelf and never reviewed.
The brave move is to offer to create a simple dashboard to keep the JBP alive.
5. Reviewing the Joint Business Plan Quarterly Together
In the 1990’s, in the days of ECR and the introduction of Category Management, swarms of teams would meet from each side to thrash through the category plan or joint business plan.
The brave move is to have fewer people meeting from each side with the skills, influence and big picture ability to stick to the plan.
6. Strategic Thinking is the Essential Skill
Supermarket and supplier relationships are becoming less day-to-day trading and more about annual planning.
The skills required today are not the same skills required yesterday. Joint business planning needs strategic thinking. The brave move is to employ the right people.
7. JBP Meetings are ‘Must Win Meetings’ for Any Supermarket Supplier
The impact of a JBP meeting can be huge for a supplier. It can determine the annual performance in just a few hours.
The brave move is to role play the meeting 2-3 times with others that can be the other party to identify blindspots in our thinking.
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