Online Business Community Business networking means establishing a mutually beneficial relationship with other business people and potential clients/customers. It refers to building and cultivating relationship with people of similar interests in ways that can benefit all parties.
People have been networking in Singapore for Online Business Community as long as they’ve been communicating. Effective networking is to make you known. Primary purpose of business networking is to tell others about your business and hopefully turn them into customers. Purpose of business networking is to increase business revenue. Business networking helps you eventually attain business growth and increase the profits.
You can use networking as a tool for finding customers, investors, staff, suppliers and business partners with minimal cost to business by being a part of any Online Business Community. Networking is important in business as it’s a means to form relationship with others that helps to grow your business. Business networking is one of the most effective marketing and prospecting tools you can use to grow your business.
Networking with TheNewHandshake is a socioeconomic business activity by which business people meet to form relationships, to create and act upon business opportunities, share info and seek potential partners for ventures.
Networking can be done via local/ regional/ international Business Networking Groups, Mastermind groups, Community service groups, Professional associations, and Social media/ online business networking groups.
Benefits of business networking:
- You gain new contacts and referrals, increasing your business. Help you identify opportunities for partnerships, joint ventures, or new areas of expansion for business. You get much higher quality leads.
- Visibility, as it helps keep you front and center in the minds of right people. This helps raise your profile.
- You stay current, keeping up with market conditions and overall trends in your industry.
- You find solutions to your business problems, such as financial problems and finding ideal candidate.
- You expand knowledge by taking advantage of the viewpoints and prior experience of others.
Internet age offers new Online Business Community networking tools. Online social networking sites have taken business networking to a new level. Many websites provide business-oriented social networking online. Some people also make good use of blogs for networking. Social networking sites help you reach out to people at your convenience, without having to attend events or meetings. But good business networking shouldn’t begin and end with online social networking. They don’t replace face-to-face networking.
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Supply Chain Management (SCM) as defined by Tom McGuffog is "Maximising added value and reducing total cost across the entire trading process through focusing on speed and certainty of response to the market." Due to globalization and ICT, SCM has become a tool for companies to compete effectively either at a local level or at a global scale. SCM has become a necessity especially for manufacturing industry when it comes to deliver products at a competitive cost and at a higher quality than their competitors. Here are some of the reason SCM has become important to today's manufacturing industry:-
Competitive Edge through Core Competencies
Today's business climate has rapidly changed and has become more competitive as ever in nature. Businesses now not only need to operate at a lower cost to compete, it must also develop its own core competencies to distinguish itself from competitors and stand out in the market. In creating the competitive edge, companies need to divert its resources to focus on what they do best and outsource the process and task that is not important to the overall objective of the company. SCM has allowed company to rethink their entire operation and restructure it so that they can focus on its core competencies and outsource processes that are not within the core competencies of the company. Due to the current competitive market, it is the only way for a company to survive. The strategy on applying SCM will not only impact their market positioning but also strategic decision on choosing the right partners, resources and manpower. By focusing on core competencies also will allow the company to create niches and specialization of core areas. As stated in the Blue Ocean Strategy outlined by Chan Kim, in order to create a niche for competitive advantage, companies must look at the big picture of the whole process, and figuring out which process can be reduce, eliminate, raise and create.
As an example stated by Chan Kim, the Japanese automotive industries capitalise on its resources to build small and efficient cars. The Japanese automotive industries gain competitive edge by utilising their supply chain to maximise their core competencies and position itself in a niche market. The strategy works and now Toyota Motor Corporation, a Japanese company, is considered to be the number one auto car maker in the world beating Ford and General Motors of the United States.
SCM has allowed business nowadays to not just have productivity advantage alone but also on value advantage. As Martin Christopher in his book, Logistics and Supply Chain Management: Strategies for Reducing Cost and Improving Service' states, 'Productivity advantage gives a lower cost profile and the value advantage gives the product or offering a differential 'plus' over competitive offerings.' Through maximizing added value and also reduce the cost in the same time, more innovation can be added to the product and process. Mass manufacturing offers productivity advantage but through effective supply chain management, mass customization can be achieved. With mass customization, customers are given the value advantage through flexible manufacturing and customized adaptation. Product life cycles also can be improved through effective use of SCM. Value advantage also changes the norm of traditional offerings that is 'one-size-fits-all.' Through SCM, the more accepted offerings by the industry to the consumers would be a variety of products catered to different market segments and customers preferences.
As an example, the Toyota Production System practiced in Toyota, evaluates its supply chain and determines what is value added activities and what is not value added activities. Non added value activities are considered to be 'Muda' or waste and therefore must be eliminated. Such non added value activities are overproduction, waiting, unnecessary transport, over processing, excess inventory, unnecessary movement, defects and unused employee creativity. The steps taken to eliminate waste are through Kaizen, Kanban, Just-in-time and also push-pull production to meet actual customer's demands. The Toyota Production System revolutionise the Supply Chain Management towards becoming a leaner supply chain system that is more agile and flexible towards meeting the end users demands.
Networking can be a waste of time if done incorrectly. Trading business cards with dozens of people, sending mass email blasts, racking up hundreds of friends on social media may not accomplish much.
Although increased sales is the end goal, don’t participate in business networking to sell. Successful networks build relationships. Find and develop relationship with people. At TheNewHandshake we believe networking can be a very powerful tool in enhancing your ability to lead and influence other people, but only when you provide value to the people in your network.
Develop a network before you need it. Stay in touch. Cultivate respect and trust. Be genuinely interested. Choose the right group. Be responsive and develop relationship.
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