Plus: Steps for Inventory Optimization, Burning Professional Bridges, the WTO in China’s Exports Dispute, Leadership Language, Female Entrepreneurship and Surprising Business Advantages.
Sometimes the Internet seems like it’s gotten too big. To help navigate this sea of information, Industry Market Trends’ weekly Worth a Look feature spotlights some of the more interesting, informative and amusing resources that might have slipped under your radar — all in bite-sized chunks.
- 5 Keys to Inventory Optimization | As global supply chains look for ways to manage unpredictable demand and higher competition, one of their main priorities is achieving inventory optimization without sacrificing customer service and reduced variable costs. At IndustryWeek, Mani Iyer, senior business manager for Genpact, outlines five key steps to improve inventory processes: take a business assessment, develop an inventory plan, execute the plan, measure its performance and lock in continuous improvement.
- Avoid Burning Business Bridges | Building solid relationships is crucial for good business, but the way relationships end can be just as important. Although customers may shift their business elsewhere, employees may move on to new opportunities and suppliers may be replaced, it’s important to avoid burning any professional bridges. CBS MoneyWatch provides in-depth tips for avoiding unpleasantness when ending relationships with clients, workers, suppliers, sales reps or competitors.
- Can the WTO Solve the China Rare-Earths Dispute? | Heeding requests from the United States, European Union and Japan, the World Trade Organization (WTO) has decided to investigate China’s export restrictions on rare-earth resources, which are critical materials in a wide range of high-tech manufacturing processes. China produces roughly 90 percent of the world’s rare-earths supply, but the country’s government has increasingly tightened export rights and raised duties to make these resources more expensive.
- Leadership Language from a Submarine Captain | Have trouble communicating with department heads, senior executives, employees or teammates? Well, imagine having to smooth out workplace relations while commanding a nuclear-powered submarine. Captain David Marquet, of the U.S.S. Sante Fe, explains the power of leadership language when dealing with subordinates or superiors in his upcoming book, Turn the Ship Around, excerpted in Fast Company.
- Best and Worst States for Female Entrepreneurs | Female entrepreneurship has surged in the U.S. in recent years, but some parts of country have benefited more than others. Breaking down results from a new survey from American Express’s OPEN Forum, Inc.com notes that the number of female-owned businesses has increased more than 54 percent in the past 15 years, growing at 1.5 times the national average. While Georgia, North Carolina, Mississippi and Texas have seen the fastest growth in female entrepreneurs, Alaska, Iowa, West Virginia, Kansas and Ohio have experienced the slowest.
- Turning a Bad Surprise into a Business Advantage | A common assumption is that predictability and control are good in business, while uncertainty is bad, meaning that many companies dread surprises. But the kinds of breakthroughs that take the market by storm are often driven by mistakes or unexpected results. Co.Design explains how a surprise – even a negative one – can be used to a firm’s advantage by tapping into untargeted customers, revealing previously unknown market information and sparking innovation.
- Boost Manufacturing through Resource Productivity | Manufacturers can often add value, reduce costs and limit their exposure to pricing volatility by improving resource productivity, which involves using fewer resources per unit of output. A new infographic from McKinsey & Company illustrates the bottom-line benefits of enhancing resource efficiency in manufacturing and how companies should rethink their resource usage.