Risk. Reward. Rebound. Relay.

Fahim Akbar

Manager - Implementation Services

The audience is a blur because of the grand spotlights shining on your face. It’s the 2017 Oscars and you are presenting the award for Best Picture. As you stand in front of hundreds of tuxedos and designer gowns, and thousands more in robes and pajamas at home, you announce the wrong movie.

Things can go wrong, just like they did at this year's Oscars. However, don’t let that deter you from taking risks. The 2015 Miss Universe host Steve Harvey also took a risk as a host—he made a mistake, addressed the mistake and then offered to relay his lessons to the Oscar presenters. There is always a reward when taking a risk. It could be an immediate reward, a hidden reward in rebounding, or a reward in relaying what you’ve learned.



Take a risk. Step on the stage. Take a different route to work. Taste that item on the lunch menu that looks like it's still alive.

Once you’re at work, you can explore alternative routes there too - with your supplier, with your customer, with your teammate, etc.

Try this: reach out to your vendors, share projections with them, and request their price change schedule. Engage with your customer in ways you haven’t before. Start a conversation about their needs on the horizon. Maybe this means partnering with you to tweak the network supply. Discover creative practices of competitors. You might find great opportunities to connect with them at a premiere user conference.


The reward. You may find that new commute to work saved you three minutes. Even better, maybe you’ll discover a coffee shop right around the corner from the office that with a tasty menu and short lines.

Supply Chain Planning (SCP) is a lucrative toolbox. We encourage you to explore all the gadgets in SCP to discover hidden opportunities in your inventory. Equipped with the Vendor Price Change schedule, be a little forward, try a Forward Buy, and swim in more returns without additional investment. Dig into the back of your closet of Item SKUs to optimize your inventory with seasonal flare.


What happens when you take the risk, and it doesn’t give the reward you wanted? Now its time to rebound—mine the experience for its hidden rewards.

Maybe the discussions about Price Changes with your supplier fell through, but you’ve started a conversation. Keep that channel open and maybe there is an opening to talk to them about Lead Time opportunities. The missed connection with one supplier serves as insight into tuning your approach with the next.

Once you take the first step, the second foot will ensue more seamlessly.


Once you take that risk, pay it forward. Dig into your group’s trove of collective knowledge. Lend your colleague a hand as they embark on a risk.

Maybe seasonality didn’t work out for your product line, but share your lessons learned with coworkers; it might be useful to them. And then, like Steve Harvey, be there to support them if they slip while in the limelight.


Take a chance. After the first step, your initiative will deliver you a reward. It may come in a different form than what you anticipated. You may be rewarded with an opportunity to learn or to share what you’ve learned.

We encourage everyone to share your risks, rewards and rebounds within the Blue Ridge community. BLUEPrint is a great time to interact with your peers and share your knowledge and learn from theirs. For more information on the Blue Ridge community gathering, click here.