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Gaining executive attention

December 12, 2012

Earlier this week I attended an excellent seminar on Innovation in Thought Leadership, conducted by Meridian West, a company that focuses on professional services (and advises many leading law firms on their marketing and value-add).

Among the many interesting items that were covered, there was a section that highlighted eight ways to grab management attention through thought leadership offerings and reports. Many of these have great relevance to business functions (Legal, Procurement, Contract or Commercial Management). Of course, i reviewed them in the context of how well IACCM is doing in addressing the topics – so I have illustrated the different areas with examples of IACCM reports.

1.       Future gazing (eg Future of Contracting)

2.       League tables (eg Most Admired Companies for Contract Management, Most Admired for Negotiation)

3.       Gap analysis (e.g. team and individual skills assessments; process maturity assessments)

4.       Individual function / job role (with so much change there is universal uncertainty so predictions of how things will look are of great interest)

5.       Business sentiment (infographics – our State of the Global Economy reports did this)

6.       Benchmarks of performance (eg maturity assessment, IACCM benchmark reports)

7.       How to …. (reports that tackle things like ‘How to do business in Russia’ or ‘Best practice in cloud computing’)

8.       Breakthrough models (eg Relational contracting study and implementation guide)

Another key aspect of the message is that simply relaying high value data is not enough; attention spans today demand that there is direct interpretation into specific ‘calls to action’.

The session will change some of our approaches at IACCM. But I believe it contains some key messages and tools for functional leaders everywhere, as they vie to deliver value and raise management appreciation of their team’s contribution. As a result, I plan to work with Meridian West to deliver some executive roundtables, in which we can share ideas and inspire our community to action.


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