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(with some conventional tools thrown in too :-)). 

Early in 2017 I explored in a post the topics that make me tick - those topics that inspire my action (including the odd rant), and that are subjects that I share often in the procurement and business speaking, training, facilitation and coaching (1:1 or 1:3) work that I do. They're also subjects that I have expertise in, enjoy, and that also make a difference when applied well.

Posts covered the following topics (follow the hypertext link in the heading to the post I wrote on the subject):
  • Inspiring change - because effective change comes from motivated people who are open to making the changes needed. 
  • Creativity and Innovation - because there's a law of diminishing returns, and if we keep doing what we've always done we get what we're always got! 
(The plate was made using Marianne Williamson's wonderful words - our deepest fear...)
    • Soft skills - because if achieving your goals relies on working with other people soft skills are the fastest way of unlocking misunderstandings and achieving results. My passion for soft skills development has resulted in the development of the Purchasing Coach Soft Skills Toolkit. It brings together a series of postcards written to Procurement from their soft skills. More here.
    • Language - because words have power, and we often unconsciously use words that promote failure and hinder success.  
    • Use of unconventional tools - because the tools I use are particularly good at bypassing barriers or resistance to change to unlock potential. 
    • Don't leave your humanity at the door - because I get frustrated when I hear people tell me that we have to leave our authentic selves/humanity at the office door, and instead apply rules that cause other people and the planet great distress. I believe taking our humanity to work with us is what being a B Corp is all about, and is something I'm going to be talking to B Corporations about during the year. Here's additional links to two posts that explain more about this. 1. My response to the excuse for the lack of humanity in business "that's just the way business is", and 2. "the sky is not the limit" a reminder that nothing is impossible.

    I trust that has given you a sense of who I am, why I do what I do, how I do it, and started to perhaps give you a sense of the impact it can have on unlocking the potential of the individuals and teams I work with.

    Another means of finding out more about who I am, what I do and the results achieved can be found be reading 2016: My year in blogs which was written at the end of 2016. The index of posts applying unconventional tools to challenges faced by procurement may also help demonstrate the power of the tools I use to facilitate change, provide new perspectives and unlock that potential.

    Wishing you all a wonderfully creative and inspiring 2017, I do hope you'll get in touch to see how we may work together this year - directly or for your team or clients.

    Alison Smith
    The Purchasing Coach
    Using unconventional tools to unlock personal, procurement and organisational potential

    To find out more about how I might be able help you or your team to unlock your potential in 2017 do call me on +44(0)7770 538159 or email I look forward to hearing from you.

    I'm a procurement professional of over 30 years, who started to develop an understanding of soft / people skills 17 years ago and obtained a qualification as a result. Since then I've undertaken certification on training, coaching and some unconventional tools.

    I'm a very effective category manager, great and enthusiastic procurement and soft skill trainer and coach, and an expert at using unconventional tools to help unlock potential.

    If  you'd like to know the qualifications that support the work I do here's the most relevant:
    • Acorn Accredited Coach - Advanced Certificate in Coaching Practice Accredited by the Association for Coaching - 2016
    • Frameworks for Change Coaching Process coach – InnerLinks - 2008
    • International Neuro Linguistic Programming Training Association (INLPTA) – NLP Practitioner, Master Practitioner, & Trainer - 2000/2003
    • Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply (CIPS) - 2000
    • BA (Hons) Business Studies - 1985