Show them something different

6 November 2009
When I signed up to attend the ProcureCon conference this week in Brussels, the last thing I expected was to be shown a You Tube clip of father and son comedy-dance act Stavros Flatley’s first audition for Britain’s Got Talent. There I was in the main conference hall watching a presentation by Angela Porter, ITV’s group procurement director, when the ingenious Greek take on Irish dancing suddenly appeared on the big screen behind her. What Angela was trying to demonstrate was that it is often difficult to engage with stakeholders when you’re trying to do something different. Presented with an idea from left field, the reaction of an unsuspecting audience can be unpredictable. The response from the Brussels crowd to Stavros Flatley was mixed, which illustrated her point perfectly. How do you get people interested in something unfamiliar? When procurement presents its case (whatever that may be) to the big boys, how can you make sure they sit up and take notice? You can lead a horse to water but it’s often very hard to make it drink...
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