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Intercultural communication and global business success programs like no other

Global Vendor and                       S4
Supplier Management

Improve cost-performance, speed and quality with global vendors by communicating effectively and using clearer shared processes.

The problem is Japanese customers often expect their global vendors and suppliers to try hard to understand and meet their needs to make long term mutually supporting relationships, but actually they often just prioritize short term profit

Create plans, processes and milestones together that drive mutual success, and manage this fairly.

This seminar was fun and interactive. It was helpful talking about our typical problems with Indian and Chinese vendors, and hearing solution ideas from each other. I could get good communication tips.

IT Project Manager
, Insurance Company

Our US parts suppliers never seem to try to understand our needs or match our timeline. They don’t treat us like valued customers. Now I understand we should treat them as partners, and share our business opportunities and goals, and their benefits more clearly.

Procurement Staff, Railway Manufacturer

I could find how to make stronger, win-win agreements and tools to manage performance with our suppliers. Often in Europe or Asia they push back on our requests, don’t share information, or keep their promises about quality or delivery. We need to agree and stay on track.

Purchasing Manager, Technology Company

The Purpose of this workshop:

■ Understand basics of working effectively with global and local vendors and suppliers, including managing processes such as contract negotiation, onboarding and performance management to minimize costs, delays and misunderstandings, and increase quality and compliance.

Who is it for?

■ For purchasing staff, project managers, service managers who are working with IT developers, support and service providers, outsourcing, parts and materials suppliers

How will participants benefit?

■ Do more proactive, confident and careful vendor management resulting in improved ROI and effectiveness. Know global best practices for agreeing scope of projects, creating plans, managing risks and business relationship, setting service standards and creating accountability for hitting targets.

■ Understand differences between Japanese and global business leadership and communication, and create a best mix to improve relationships with vendors and suppliers and achieve more win-win growth and success together.

Workshop Methodology:

■ Facilitators sign NDA. Clarify participants’ job roles, goals and needs, who has expertise to share,  workshop focus, workshop ‘open communication’ style. Clarify challenges in manufacturing, service, IT and other business areas, working with global vendors and supply chain.

■ Why building vendor management (VM) skills is a global trend, overview of main learning points: 1. understanding each other’s business, goals and benefits, 2. VM tools, processes and skills

■ Understand cultural differences between Japanese ‘high-context’, team-based, long-term relationship-oriented” style versus global ‘low context,’ individual responsibility, strategic, target-oriented style.

■ Global VM “win-win” philosophy: selection, sharing goals, business model information across cultures, roles, benefits, scoping project needs

■ Analyze types of agreement, best practices, case studies and peer-to-peer (P2P) learning-sharing: which are best for our situation. Understand VM workflow: systems, processes, how to share information, track progress, monitor risk, negotiate issues

■ Create VM (“hybrid”) tools that mix the best of Japanese and global working style in your company’s situation.

Program highlights

■ Interactive P2P learning style, including groups focusing on topics of interest, allows sharing of current expert information and best practices whilst keeping learning relevant and engaging.

■ Use frameworks, case studies and best practice ideas to find own highest priority issues with vendors,  causes, solutions and ideal future workflow.

■ Perform own roles within processes such as selection, service choices, pricing, agreements, risk and quality measurement and quality resolution to effectively support operations.


Facilitation Agenda  (full day)


Time Item Description
09:00 Orientation: 1. Purpose of “Vendor Management (VM).”
2. Seminar goals, introductions.
3. Open communication,
4. Peer-to-peer (P2P) learning-sharing
09:20 What is vendor management (VM)? Basic VM roles:
i. Evaluate and negotiate with vendors and suppliers,
ii. Create and monitor contractual agreements,
iii. Manage relationships,
iv. Monitor risk and performance metrics,
v. Maintain full documentation,
vi. Resolve Issues   <Break: 10 minutes>
10:40 Project management and VM across cultures: Japan vs West/Global style.  Intercultural leadership frameworks and communication skills. Case studies and discussion.                                                     <Lunch: 60 minutes>
13:00 How can VM improve vendor performance? 1. Drive value by analyzing needs, classifying, prioritizing and using right planning tools and team roles per situation, communicating clear vision and systems.
2. Gain control by effective vendor selection, onboarding, monitoring of risk and performance, encouraging collaboration.
3. Managing Statements of Work (SOWs) – Supporting with agile user stories,
4. Optimize spending by ongoing metrics analysis, win-win negotiation        <Break: 10 minutes>
13:30 Negotiation and Creation of Contracts/ Service Level Agreements (SLAs) How to negotiate terms: Using internal systems and global procurement specialists’ support: focus on type of contract, pricing model, type of vendor, standard processes for RFP, RFQ, SLA, KPIs…etc. Role plays.
15:00 P2P Teach-back:
Groups review best practices for designing contracts, managing vendors and outsourcing in Japan-Global situation.
2. Q&A: Groups review topics, consider and ask questions     
<Break: 10 minutes>
16:00 Our VM Improvement Discussions 1. Groups choose and discuss topics of interest (Example: A. Selection, B. Contracts, C. SLAs, D. Onboarding, E. Risk, F. Monitoring performance, G. Issues & Resolution, H. Collaboration) Facilitator and training sponsors monitor and support discussions.
2. Groups present ideas and next steps to each other.
3. Today’s learnings     <Finish 17:00 >

Sample Program Slides

Keep strategic, synergistic view

Categorize vendors and suppliers

Create clear plans and agreements





Program design by Jon James Lynch and J-Global facilitators. Copyright K.K. J-Global 2018. All rights reserved