An agile demand chain.

About the only thing we know about forecasts is that they are virtually always wrong, often drastically. This being the case, the ability to quickly react to short term changes in supply and demand, an advanced degree of agility would be a pretty useful weapon in the survival kit.

Consider the agility in your business, and do not get it mixed up with flexibility, which is the ability to adapt your business to accommodate the longer term structural changes in the competitive environment.

Many of the “lean” tools are designed to assist the agility of a business, as they enable agile response to changes in short term demand. 

About strategyaudit

StrategyAudit is a boutique strategy and marketing consultancy concentrating on the challenges of the medium sized manufacturing businesses that make up the backbone of our economy. The particular focus is on their strategic and marketing development. as well as the business and operational efficiency improvements necessary for day to day commercial survival. We not only give advice, we go down "into the weeds" to ensure and enable implementation.
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3 Responses to An agile demand chain.

  1. Pingback: Business half-life. | Strategyaudit

  2. Jan Husdal says:

    I will not go into a debate on lean versus agile, there are enough people already who think that the two don’t mix, although I for one would be inclined to disagree. The reason for my comment though is that I can only commend you on pointing to the differences between flexibility and agility. Whereas flexibility is a planned response to sometimes unexpected changes in the environment, agility is an unplanned, and often contingent, response to changes, and is imperative to any business in today’s shifting times.

    • strategyaudit says:

      Jan,
      I had not really considered lean Vs agile as a possible debate until your comment, as my thinking is that agility will almost inevitably be an outcome of increasing your “lean” credentials.
      Agility is in my experience has never been expressed as objective of a lean implementation, they are associated with cost and cycle time reduction, and machine productivity, usually tied in with inventory and lead time reduction objectives. Agility just happens, and when it does, people recognise the value, and start to consider ways to leverage it with customers.

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