My U.S. 2017 NMSDC Conference Adventure with Supply Nation Family...

I just got back from a week long business adventure in the USA attending the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) Conference in Detroit Michigan as a member of the Supply Nation delegation family.

The 22 hour journey marathon started in Brisbane, Queensland down to Sydney, 16 hours to Dallas Fort Worth, Texas and landing in Detroit, Michigan. The saving grace was my fellow delegation members and the feeling of anticipation of the adventure to come.

Supply Nation delegation enjoying a meal

Supply Nation delegation enjoying a meal

Supply Nation Delegation Family

Our Supply Nation delegation consisted of Supply Nation executive leaders, Indigenous Suppliers, Corporate members and international change enablers from New Zealand.  During the course of our journey together our delegation became family and the greatest value and learning I gained on the trip was from within the delegation family.  

2017 Supply Nation delegation - NMSDC, Detroit, Michigan. Bala's Jamie and Te Aroha are the only delegates missing from this photograph.

2017 Supply Nation delegation - NMSDC, Detroit, Michigan. Bala's Jamie and Te Aroha are the only delegates missing from this photograph.

Global Supplier Diversity Alliance

Prior to the Conference the delegation had a incredible opportunity to connect with the Global Supplier Diversity Alliance (GSDA) family. I look forward to following up with some of the friendships that were created, and accessing the GSDA family to enter the global marketplace. Thank you Supply Nation for the introductions. The GSDA consists of:

  • Australia: Supply Nation
  • Canada: Canadian Aboriginal & Minority Supplier Council (CAMSC)
  • China: Minority Supplier Development in China (MSDChina)
  • South Africa: South African Supplier Diversity Council (SASDC)
  • UK: Minority Supplier Development UK (MSDUK)

NMSDC Conference

The Supply Nation team organised a great program of events for the delegation to attend which the majority of was held at the Cobo Centre near our accommodation. The trade show event lived up to expectations with a great example of the commitment of USA corporates and minority business enterprises (MBE) side by side exhibiting their businesses. 

Even though the USA MBE sector is commercially mature there was some missing ingredients for me.  That our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander business sector actively demonstrate and our Corporate sector are slowly embracing, and that is respect for country, our peoples' lore and culture in how we conduct business and sustain two of the most ancient Indigenous cultures within our global village.

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Key NMSDC Event Takeaways

Before I share takeaways, it has to be shared USA fast foods is tasty but should not be consumed excessively. Anyway, back to the what I took away from the event besides developing enduring friendships with my fellow delegation family members.

  1. Tailor business PITCH to your audience
  2. Secure a large CLIENT to work with and build our business together
  3. Have a business MENTOR
  4. Develop a collaborative and respectful RELATIONSHIP with fellow Indigenous business
  5. SUPPLIER DIVERSITY has to be driven by the minority business sector in partnership with Corporate clients/partners

What's Next?

Got back into Australia and straight back into progressing the Tagai Management Consultants journey. I will spend some time to reflect on the USA adventure, strengthen friendships, apply learnings ,and drive Tagai Management Consultants to achieve our corporate sustainability and growth goals.

In 2018, the NMSDC Conference will be held in Austin, Texas and the learning and networking is a worthwhile investment for Supply Nation suppliers and corporate members.

Acknowledge and Respects

I would like to take the opportunity to pay respects to the First Nation people of the country we met on during the Conference, and to our whanau from Aotearoa for your spirit, drive, and treasured gift.

Thank you to Laura Berry (Supply Nation CEO) and the on the ground Supply Nation team (Jason Timor - D/CEO, Jenny Wardrop - QLD/NT Relationship officer) for providing great support, advice and learnings during the Conference. Respects to the 2017 Supply Nation Delegation family for your patience, support, advice, laughter, and most importantly SPIRIT. "Too deadly!!"

Finally, I would like to humbly thank my Indigenous Supply Chain Connections family for supporting me to attend the event https://www.indigenoussupplychainconnections.com.au/

Murray Saylor - Managing Director - Tagai Management Consultants

Tagai Management Consultants "maximising opportunities to make a difference" - Murray Saylor
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