Monday, April 27, 2015

Purchasing Can Bootstrap Organizational Transformation!

Can Purchasing Bootstrap and Lead the Transformation of An Organization?

Purchasing’s role in an organization touches across many departments, suppliers, countries, and competitors. This situation requires that purchasing professionals possess excellent communication skills and the ability to quickly adapt to different cultures, perspectives and crises.  Transforming your own organization’s culture is a grueling challenge. Expecting purchasing to “bootstrap” or use its own resources rather than external help, in organizational transformation, is a demanding goal.  Purchasing, however, has many of the qualities and capabilities to act as the prime catalyst for this quest.

In fact many, purchasing organizations have radically changed or reengineered themselves from traditional clerical type organizations. The supply management or supply chain concept is rapidly becoming the norm. This type of change was monumental and transformative. Could purchasing pull the bootstrap off? Most would say highly unlikely, but below are some tactics that could lay the groundwork or accelerate a successful transformation of an organization. Many have been previously used to transform purchasing into supply management.

One of the best ways is by breaking down department silos by involving diverse cross-functional teams in sourcing decisions. Including internal and external customers in as many decisions as possible is a sound empowerment tactic that pays off dramatically. Teamwork in such efforts deepens the understanding of participating employees in the overall purchasing cycle, and helps imbed the concept of total cost of ownership.

Incorporating grassroots efforts to ask internal customers what they want to help simplify purchasing transactions is another powerful tool. People usually appreciate colleagues who try to make their jobs easier and are not afraid of criticism.  Making all transactions pain free, fast and intuitive is a strong way to be valued and improve respect for purchasing. Acquiring strong base business knowledge for purchasing, by working side-by-side with production and sales, both improves product knowledge and enhances purchasing professionals’ credibility and business perspective. This helps expand the understanding of the voice of the paying customer.

Marketing the importance of purchasing and the supply chain with visible metrics creates a clear focus that others appreciate. Purchasing has to aggressively market their importance to the organization and develop a formal internal marketing plan of their goals. Crafting a long-range purchasing plan that aligns with the organizations vision, mission and strategic plan helps to justify purchasing’s efforts to the rest of the organization.  Communicating with, as many colleagues on a one-on-one basis should be especially encouraged. This gives purchasing professionals a chance to make their pitch to as many folks as possible and develop strong relationships.

Conducting training and inviting people from other departments to participate helps sell purchasing’s goals and metrics. Vital feedback can be obtained on the usefulness of purchasing systems and procedures in such sessions.  Finally but most importantly, developing leadership skills and practicing leadership in groups is a good long-term skill-building course of action for all of purchasing. Most experts agree that one skilled leader can turn an organization around. Purchasing needs to be ready with leadership skills to help lead or encourage the organizational transformation process.

Any department would face and probably fail at the nearly impossible task of bootstrap transformation of an organization. Purchasing however would be the best place to start the transformation quest and develop the passionate and powerful leaders required to execute it.

Dr. Tom DePaoli

Dr. Tom DePaoli is the Management Program Director at Marian University in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, and the Principal (CEO) of Apollo Solutions ( which does general business consulting in the supply chain, Lean Six Sigma and human resources areas. Recently he retired from the Navy Reserve after over 30 years of service. In other civilian careers, he was a supply chain and human resources executive with corporate purchasing turnaround experience and Lean Six Sigma deployments. He is the author of: Kaizen Kreativity (Oops!)Common Sense Purchasing, Common Sense Supply Management and Growing up Italian in the 50s
 His Amazon author’s page is
 His LinkedIn profile is:

Monday, April 20, 2015

Sizing up Your Suppliers and Preparing Them for Your Strategy.

Sizing up Your Suppliers and Preparing Them for Your Strategy.
            Suppliers that have had experience with non-traditional purchasing concepts, alliances and partnerships definitely have an advantage when it comes to developing a deep relationship with them. Make sure you take the time to explain your procurement or supply chain strategy to them and to take the time to understand their strategy. They need to know what’s in it for them. Make it clear and measurable. Feeling good about each other doesn’t get to the bottom line. Appearances do count.  You can size up a supplier’s partner quotient a lot by actual site visits and talking to their employees at all levels. Smiling faces are better than growls and disgruntled remarks. This new frontier with suppliers has some particular characteristics.  These characteristics include most favored customer contracts, elimination of incoming inspection, reduction of supplier base, early supplier involvement in design, value engineering, mutual cost reductions, targeting of non-production company costs, the complete integration of key suppliers into the business, and extensive use of cross-functional teams.   This quantum leap philosophy with suppliers requires the education of purchasing personnel, rapid access to information and supplier empowerment. Cross-functional business teams and a constant dedication to improve and to reduce time to market are key elements.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Just How Many Strategic Suppliers and How to Select Them.

Strategic sourcing is a disciplined process organizations implement in order to more efficiently purchase goods and services from suppliers. The goal is to reduce total acquisition cost while improving value. A Strategic sourcing strategy should be initiated immediately. A comprehensive sourcing methodology should be followed religiously to include strategic alliance and strategic relationship building with key suppliers. Key supplier alliances must be established. Supplier rationalization (reduction) must be accomplished first and dramatically. Many consulting firms offer a Strategic Sourcing Management solution that walks online users through each step of a consulting-type procurement methodology, including gathering data, analyzing requirements, and setting strategy, as well as executing e-procurement through shopping e-marketplaces, conducting reverse auctions, and using other methods that are built into the application.
Here is a Strategic Sourcing Step Process that outlines an iterative six-step process:
·       Assess Opportunity
·       Assess Internal Supply Chain
·       Assess Supply Markets
·       Develop Sourcing Strategy
·       Implement Strategy
·       Institutionalize Strategy

How to Avoid Dragging Out the RFP Process

            Always set a final deadline for returning an RFI or RFP. If a supplier does not meet the deadline don’t consider them.  Don’t ever compromise a bid or the bid process by favoring certain suppliers. Many folks want to procrastinate bids. The real reason is their stake in a relationship with their homey supplier is threatened. They feel that they may be proven dead wrong especially if their favorite son supplier falters. If suppliers can’t follow basic instructions on RFPs do you really want them in a relationship? I think not.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Integrate Procurement with Other Departments.

Integrate Procurement with Other Departments.
            Break down your stovepipe and put procurement folks in other departments. Force them to understand other department needs. Let them go to production meetings and participate. Encourage them to explain to folks what they are doing. Get them on the front lines not the rear bureaucracy. Let them wander about and learn the business. There isn’t much real business knowledge learned in a cubicle.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Make Transaction Experiences Super User Friendly Or Else It Will Fail.

 Make Transaction Experiences Super User Friendly Or Else It Will Fail.
Face it, internal folks view doing their own procurement
transactions as an outright pain. Every effort must be made to make them simple, intuitive and painless. Catalogues must be super-simple. Catalogue content is a key. Time is of the essence to anyone buying. One of the reasons the Russian empire fell was not Star Wars but because so many people had to wait so long in so many lines in order to buy so few basically worthless goods. Waiting riles people up. Target a transaction completion for 30 seconds or less. If you can archive previous requisitions that folks can copy, cut and paste quickly into new ones by all means employ this tactic. Do not waste their time on busy work. Their time is valuable.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Standardize Equipment and Services.

Standardize Equipment and Services.
Engineers always have their pets and biases. We all do. It is critical to get them on cross functional teams to standardize parts and equipment. A goal of 80% standardized parts is realistic in many industries. Difference in brands (suppliers), OEMs, and parts must have significant added value to be justified. Try to measure quality with an obscure balkanization of OEMs and different parts (ha). Good luck. The same holds for services. Standardize them. One of the guiding principles of industrialization is standardization. Don't lose sight of it! Pursue it. Standardize whenever possible.

It's About Relationships First And Foremost

It's About Relationships First And Foremost
Purchasing is the art of building relationships. It is not about negotiations, transactions, industry knowledge, market knowledge, know-how or technology. It is all about building strong relationships and gaining the trust of suppliers, customers, and colleagues. Nothing else comes close to building relationships in importance for successful purchasing. A purchasing professional must be able to build relationships or they are about as useless as a screen door on a submarine. They may need to pursue another career. Do not spend inordinate amounts of money on so called purchasing technical training unless a strong foundation of relationships is well underway. You cannot fake relationships. You cannot legislate it. Purchasing professionals need to live it and commit to it. Integrity in relationships will always carry the day, impress suppliers, scare the competition, and let you sleep well at night. Educational credentials look good, and certifications are impressive but nothing makes a purchasing professional more effective than developing strong relationships and being true to their word. Spending more time on relationships almost always pays off for all participants. Once trust or relationships are broken they are nearly impossible to repair, so don't neglect them or underestimate their criticality. You will not be able to dig yourself out of any of the deep holes that you dig by dishonest relationships. Smoozing is a lot easier than shoveling. Honesty builds respect.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Testing Suppliers Capabilities Always Do A Road Test

Testing Suppliers Capabilities Always Do A Road Test 

Never incorporate a new supplier without an actual test run of buying an item from them period and no exceptions. Have a purchasing professional pretend they are an end user, play dumb and actually order an item form the new supplier. Review the entire transaction process to include acknowledgement and invoice payment. Check on status often. This one road test tip will save you mountains of headaches and resistance to change. Folks do not really want new suppliers. They will latch on to any mistake to justify their resistance and castigate the new supplier. During
trial periods new suppliers are most vulnerable to detractors and attackers. Make sure you meet frequently with them. You need to act almost with SWAT team efficiency when a problem occurs and solve it immediately. Agree to problem solving procedures in advance and deadlines. Solve glitches and explain what happened openly. This is not the time for shoving things under the rug or stonewalling problems. Fix them on the spot whenever possible.

How to Convince Top Executives of the Value of Purchasing

How to Convince Top Executives of the Value of Purchasing
Purchasing has continuously demonstrated their impact to the bottom line of an organization. It has been well documented and universality recognized. Then why do many companies refuse to take advantage of this cost saving resource? Why do executives still remain skeptical of purchasing’s value? In many organizations purchased materials and services account for over 50% of the cost of goods sold; yet purchasing is often relegated to a bureaucratic mundane dungeon of clerical functions.
Some of the fault lies in purchasing itself. Purchasing personnel are notoriously inept at marketing and selling their ideas and suggestions. They are often a harried bunch running around from firefight to firefight. Most do not even have a good or comprehensive communication plan.  They fail to “toot their horn” or market their successes. Purchasing fails to tell their story compellingly and neglects to sell its importance. Other departments either ignore or politely humor purchasing. Purchasing remains the chief cost driver or cost saver for many companies, yet often purchasing is remarkably under resourced and underappreciated.
One-way to sell purchasing’s importance is to empower as many other employees as possible to participate in purchasing especially on cross-functional sourcing teams.  Involving as many personnel in constructive purchasing activities educates them on the value and importance of purchasing. This is a bottom-up approach to educating employees on the value of purchasing. It encourages them to contribute their ideas about improving services and products. Purchasing needs to strongly persuade other departments to participate in purchasing processes and decisions. Purchasing all too often fails at what I call the empowerment of employees and internal public relations.
But what can purchasing do about the top executives or top-down? Many executives have stereotype views of purchasing. One of our most successful methods to convince top executives of the value of executives is to encourage direct one-on-one collaboration with executives of your suppliers; especially ones who you are partnering with suppliers who realize the relationship is long-term. Exchanging ideas at this level not only yields great results, but also expedites decisions and removes bureaucratic barriers to success.
The fact is that purchasing also runs its own Research and Development (R&D) department. Suppliers, in collaboration with purchasing, are perhaps the most cost effective R&D function in a company. Jointly they often come up with leaps in technology and transformations in products. When they cooperate they can transform a company and its products. Breakthroughs that occur via this method should receive as much publicity if not more than those developed internally!
In summary getting purchasing valued for its great contribution to revenue; requires both a bottom-up and top-down approach. Empower as many employees as possible to participate in purchasing and solicit their ideas and suggestions.  Set up one-on-one executive exchanges with your supplier executives. Finally, systematically create a strong marketing plan to communicate your successes.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Purchase Orders Eliminated by Kaizen Tools

Purchase Orders Eliminated by Kaizen Tools
I once worked for a company with a seven-part purchase-order form, and every single purchase order had to be approved by the vice president of finance. People were so disheartened by the abysmal speed of the system that maverick ways of purchasing were rampant.
A small purchasing Kaizen team completed seven As Is process maps for each method. It was a very disheartening process fraught with delays and contradictions.
Instead of trying to make the existing processes better, we decided to start from scratch on the To Be process. Fortunately we had plenty of best practices and their process maps available for purchase orders.
 We initially went to a two-part short-order form for everything under $500, and eventually to purchase cards. We eliminated ten file cabinets of forms. People soon had the con­fidence in the systems, and they were much more truthful in expressing their needs. The vice president of finance had more time to get IPO funding and improve our financial viability rather than spending his time deciding who should be purchasing pens and pencils.

Some tools of the Kaizen process eliminated very bureaucratic methods.

Storerooms and Listening to Customers (VOC)

Storerooms and Listening to Customers (VOC)
One of the first supply chain projects that we did at a large chemical company in Alabama which involved frequently used MRO parts by the maintenance folks. First we did an As Is process map! Highly paid maintenance personnel ($30 per hour) were driving in pickup trucks, in pairs, to go to a central storeroom to pick up basic and frequently-used parts. The time lost was enormous. The feedback we got from the maintenance personnel (VOC) was that they did not trust the current system at all. We were a chemical company, and our expertise or core competency was not in storeroom, or MRO parts management. We started a supplier search for dis­tributors with expertise in management parts and storerooms. We decided to basically outsource the management of these fre­quently used parts to the distributor. They examined our store­room data, provided us software, and soon discovered the one hundred parts most-frequently used by our maintenance folks.
In other words the distributor did the To Be process map for us! Since they had strong credibility the Kaizen team formed. They then set up many free-issue or mini-storerooms throughout the large chemical plant’s grounds. Our mainte­nance folks traveled or walked to these areas to get the parts they needed. The distributor maintained and restocked the areas. The distances were much shorter and conveniently decentral­ized. The maintenance people set up a steering committee (another best practice) with the distributor to review parts usage and add or subtract parts to the mini-storerooms. In Kaizen terminology this was To Be metrics! The process was greatly simplified, and the maintenance people soon developed a high degree of confidence in the distributor and the streamlined system. Then the distributor offered to reorganize our storeroom and barcode all the parts at no charge. We quickly agreed.
In another month, a shocking development occurred. We were not sure how to quantify the savings from this project and were worried that many people would not appreciate the soft savings. As stated above, many of our maintenance people had no confidence in our current storeroom system. We publicized a return-any extra-parts-with-no-questions-asked week. This was run much like a fine-free day at your local library. Our maintenance people returned over $2 million-worth of bogey or just-in-case inventory that they had been squirreling away in their toolboxes and other areas. They’d done this because they’d had zero confidence in the old system. Our new supplier accepted the parts back and gave us a large credit for the returned parts that were still usable. The distributor kept us abreast of any new storeroom-management techniques and technologies, including the RFID (Radio Frequency Identifica­tion Device). We developed a long and lasting relationship with them which became the model for our other chemical plants.
By just using a few tools of the Kaizen methodology we experienced a huge success!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Kaizens Work for Marketing Plans!

Kaizens Work for Marketing Plans!
I once was involved with a major transformation of a world­wide logistics organization. At the start of the transformation, they had twenty-six divisions. They had decided to reorganize and needed some basis for the reorganization. I suggested that we first do a marketing plan, which was greeted by disbelief and catcalls. I explained my strategy and said that first we had to find out what our market segments were and agree on that. We did fifty focus groups, deep marketing research and narrowed down our customer segments to six. This was a monumental voice of the customer exercise and we received a good short list of what our customers really valued.
However, the very first thing we did was do an As Is process map of where the organization was in the present state with all the reporting relationships and responsibilities. This was a long hard and complicated process but the Kaizen team discovered that there was much duplication and that 95% of the steps were not really valued by our customers. We then did a To Be process map of the future recommended state of the organization.
What we did next was again look at all twenty-six divisions and try to deter­mine exactly what each did. We then looked at it in terms of which of the six customer segments they served the best, or were most likely to serve the best. Much to our surprise, there were no “in-between” divisions; each division fell within a particular customer segment. All of the division heads agreed with their customer segment alignment. The consensus process was really very readily accepted.
Once we presented this information to the CEO, he imme­diately suggested that we consolidate twenty-six divisions into six. The Kaizen team had done its homework. Obviously this Kaizen team took more time that a traditional Kaizen but the tools used were practically the same. Each division would now have a customer champion, whose main mission was to meet the needs of that particular customer seg­ment. After much work, job analysis, and feedback from the divi­sion heads, we consolidated into six divisions. We eliminated over 600 positions, but we did avoid layoffs with attrition and by offering early retirement.
 Over the years, the organization had gotten out of touch with their mission and customer base. Once the reorganization was executed, when we got our customer-service metrics, we were pleasantly sur­prised to see that they’d improved dramatically. Now the organization’s employees could focus more on actual customers and their needs, instead of defending their organizational silos. Soon other organizations asked how we had accomplished this, and we shared our data with them.

Software Data Collection and Kaizen Techniques

Software Data Collection and Kaizen Techniques

A major purchasing software system was to be installed at a multi-national company. The software was specific to each plant or service department. Teams of consultants would visit each plant and try to gather the necessary data that the software installers need to install the software of the particular plant. That data was then given to the software installer to feed to the purchasing software system and then the system went live.

The error rate for the new plant systems was atrocious and the punch lists (errors) were huge. The client was growing increasingly skeptical about the software.

The software installers decided to have a Kaizen event. They did invite some data collectors to participate. It became blatantly obvious that there was no standard data collection process or technique that the data collectors used. Data was provided on spreadsheets, hand written papers, MS word documents etc. There was no order or structure to how the data was collected. When the software installers received the data it was almost impossible to be accurate with it.

The Kaizen leader took a bold step and asked the software installers to design the As Is process from scratch, not an easy Kaizen task but necessary. The installers noted that there were 420 different screens that data had to be entered on when the software was installed. They brainstormed what to do and came up with a plan to design an Excel spreadsheet with 420 sheets or one for each screen. Essentially each spreadsheet somewhat mimicked the entry screen with instructions about the data.  The data collectors in the Kaizen not only agreed to the new As Is but sold it to the other data collectors. The spreadsheet soon became more and more sophisticated and made the data collector’s job much easier by eliminating duplicate entries and creative macros.

The data entry error rate dropped from over 50% to less than 1 percent. The client’s confidence in the new procurement system rose and they ordered multiple new installations.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Employee Orientation Shortened Via the Kaizen Way

Employee Orientation Shortened Via the Kaizen Way
After completing my new employee orientation at a new company that hired me, I was astounded by the redundancy and the lack of coordination of the process. Essentially employees were given a checklist and told to get signatures or initials on a laundry list of orientation items. No time limit or deadline was provided. Employees were put on their own, to go about and about, to complete the checklist. It took me two weeks to complete the employee checklist and much of the “orientation” that I received from each department on the checklist was haphazard at best.
A Kaizen team was formed which I led to look at the orientation process and recommend changes. The team actually walked the process and was astounded that the entire process walking distance was at least three miles and often the person who was supposed to “orientate” the new employee was not available. There was a high level of frustration with all new employees as they went through the process.
The team did a Voice of the Customer analysis and discovered that about 80% of the items on the checklist were not really essential and did not require the new employee to be physically present in the department indicated on the list.
In designing the As Is process, the Kaizen team made heavy use of Internet and invented a New Employee Orientation Web site. Many of the departments on the check off list already had orientation PowerPoints or webinars for new employees. All the Kaizen team had to do was organize them on the website and make sure the departments kept them up to date. In addition we provided access for new employees to work related information like phone lists, email lists, FAQs etc. that drastically reduced their anxiety and questions.
The cycle time for the orientation was reduced from two weeks down to 2-3 days or less. More importantly a much better first impression was made on the new employee.

Reducing Workload via Kaizen Tools

Reducing Workload via Kaizen Tools
When I took over as head of a Procurement Division there were three Plants with over $500,000,000 in purchases per year. I was to transform Purchasing into Supply Management with some Lean Six Sigma tools. Plant senior management decided to downsize my department at the plant where I was located at from eight to four, starting from day one. The plant manager was not committed to the transformation attempt and wanted it to fail. I decided to do everything in my power to not fulfill his wish.
At the first meeting I had with the department team two people started to cry. They did not know how they were going to keep up with the work. I pledged that within six months, they would have enough spare time, that they would be coming to me asking me what to do to move the business ahead. They all laughed at the statement. I volunteered to take over buying of one of the major components in the plant. I of course had no idea about the workload involved in the buying process.  The next day four file drawers of paperwork for the component were moved into my office. I spent a week creating a database to help me manage the component which had no previous reliable information. Eventually a supplier helped me improve the database and ordering process.
I soon found out that purchasing data was scarce or non-existent. Purchasing employees could not give me any good summary statistics and were so caught up in firefighting that confusion reigned supreme. No one could adequately explain the purchase order process. There were no standard operating procedures.  Undaunted, I actually rolled up my sleeves and typed purchase orders myself just to get an idea of what happens. We did a process map of the purchase order process. We locked to doors to the department while we had Kaizen process mapping meetings (As Is).

We all went on a data expedition and since I knew some computer programming and could query from the company databases we started to compile our data. We discovered that we had approximately 40,000 transactions or buys per year. By using a Pareto chart we saw that over 80% of the purchase orders were under $200.  The vast majority of our purchases were small dollar items. Additionally only twenty people did about 90% of these buys. They were our super users or power requisitioners.  We decided to concentrate on them and educate them about our efforts to transform the entire process. We designed a short order purchase form for purchases under $1000 that they could use. They participated in the design of the form. No interface with purchasing was required for the form. The middleman (purchasing) was eliminated. The only catch was they had to buy from a list of our preferred suppliers. If they wanted to deviate from the list they needed to get our approval.
We did a new process map (To Be) for the short order form with the super users participating.  We created a manual and SOP for the super users with the preferred supplier list, contact information and basic purchasing terms, rules etc. We posted a process flow map in the department for everyone to see.
Our workload was drastically reduced and the buyers did not have to worry about these small purchase orders. In addition out suppliers remarked that the error rate on these short orders was greatly reduced. We recognized super users who had error free months and who worked well with suppliers. We eventually switched to purchase cards for these twenty super users which practically eliminated all paperwork.
Finally we had time for supplier rationalization or reduction and strategic initiatives. Again we mined the data and found out that we had over 20,000 suppliers. With hard work and consolidation of buys we got that number down to 209. We set up preferred suppliers and greatly simplified the entire process from requisition to payment.  We standardized payment terms which greatly relieved accounts payables workload who soon became our allies.
            We essentially used all the tools of the Kaizen event but not quite in the sequence order that is recommended.
In four months not six, my employees had the confidence and trust in me to come to my office and admit that they had nothing to do that day and ask what could they work on to move the business ahead. Most of this progress was due to using some simple Lean Six Sigma process improvement tools.

Suggested Sample Ground Rules for Meeting Operation

Suggested Sample Ground Rules for Meeting Operation
Each committee should develop/review a list of ground rules at the beginning of each year. The list below provides sample ground rules that various committees have used. Your committee may wish to incorporate some of these or develop new ones.
  • Start / end our meetings on time
  • Come to meetings prepared.
  • Stay on task; no side conversations
  • Listen to others and don’t interrupt.
  • Follow an agenda
  • Operate on consensus – seek general agreements all can “live with.”
  • Make decisions based on clear information.
  • Bring closure to decisions
  • Identify actions that result from decisions
  • Members support committee recommendations
  • Agree on what information goes “out” and what stays in the group.
  • Accept the fact that there will be differences of opinion.
  • Show mutual respect
  • We will honor brainstorming without being attached to our own viewpoint.
  • We will keep our own notes of the meetings
  • Use Meeting Summaries (Includes Agenda Items & Minutes)
  • Check egos at the door.
  • Attack the problem, not the person"no blame game"
  • Share time so that all can participate
  • People will speak when recognized.
  • Be free to speak minds without fear of reprisal.
  • Don’t attribute ideas to individuals.
  • Identify pending issues and agreements at end of meeting
  •   Raise hands (when not in a brain storming session).
  •   Stay on subject.
Be concise. Do not repeat what others have said.
Be respectful and polite.
Raise Hands Stay in Order except for: point of clarification or point of process
Don’t Interrupt Speaker
Stay on Subject
Be Concise, Don’t Repeat Others
Be Respectful, Be Polite.
Everyone participates
Start and finish on time
One conversation at a time
Silence is agreement
Different opinions are welcome
Challenge ideas, not individuals
Disagree in private; unite in public
Do what you say you'll do
Treat everyone with courtesy and respect
Listen activelyrespect others when they are talking
Listen to others with an open mind
One person speaks at a timeno cross talk
Be aware of your own and other’s participationstep up and step back!
Share your own experiences and opinions with “I” statements, rather than generalizing with “We” or “They” comments
Respectfully challenge an idea, not a person
Respect the groups’ time and keep comments brief and to the point