ISM’s Annual Conference – Best Ever

I have been an exhibitor and speaker at ISM’s Annual International Conferences and have had the pleasure of attending every one since 1992 in Orlando. Each conference offers a slew of current and useful information, great networking events, and numerous avenues for growth for all levels of expertise. However, i think this year’s conference in Grapevine (Dallas area), TX  will be the best one ever.

Check out ISM’s impressive lineup of keynote speakers, starting with the 66th U.S. Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice. In addition, Hau Lee of Stanford University Graduate School of Business will speak about agile supply chains and Bernard Baumohl, award-winning economics reporter for TIME magazine, will lead ISM’s annual Business Survey/Economic Outlook.

Another reason I’m looking forward to this year’s conference is ISM’s increased presence in the exhibit hall. ISM’s booth is expanded and placed in the center of the exhibit hall. The booth’s Solutions Bar gives attendees easy access to ISM Board members, speakers, ISM staff members, and conference volunteers. There will be separate kiosks for ISM Professional Credentials, Membership, Education as well as CAPS Research. ADR North America will also have its own kiosk, so please stop by.

The real meat of the ISM conference, however, lies in its numerous hour-long learning sessions, two-hour mega-sessions, and pre- and post-conference seminars. ISM conference sessions have always been topical, but this year there’s even more of an emphasis on information you need now, like the new ‘Breaking News’ sessions on supply chain security. Here are some other great sessions I jotted down while browsing the brochure

• Session BI — Offshore or Reshore? How to Objectively Decide
• Session HH — Create Adaptive Sourcing Strategy Under China’s New Tax Code
• Session GC — Critical Skills 101: What CPOs Want
• Session IH — Volatility: Managing Price Fluctuations in Volatile Markets
• Session BG — Beyond BRIC: Supply Chain Strategy in Emerging Economies
• Session ID — Avoiding Risky Afterthoughts: Integrating the Management of Supply Risk and Business Continuity

ISM also has two new professional development tracks: ‘Supply Management for Emerging Professionals and Their Managers’ and ‘Game Changers’. These new tracks have learning sessions like, “Things My Professor Never Taught Me”, “Sourcing and Category Management 101”, and “Understand Uncertainty Before Building Strategy”.

Among the nine mega-sessions offered, I’m leading one on Wednesday morning called, “Accelerate Your Career: Do You Have What It Takes?”.

ISM is also introducing its first ‘On-Point’ seminar, to be offered on Wednesday afternoon (the last day of conference). The topic this year is Cost Containment and I’m fortunate to be the instructor for this class as well.

ISM Board members will have a stronger presence at this year’s conference. In addition to the Solutions Bar inside the ISM exhibit booth, you’ll see the following Board members presenting a session, sitting on a panel, or leading one of our ten learning tracks: Jason Kwan, Lisa Martin, C.P.M., Ann Oka, Joseph Black, Steven Miller, Tim Fiore, CPSM, C.P.M., MCIPS, Kimberly Brown, and new Chair, Thomas K. Linton. You’ll also see former Board Chairs Dave Nelson, C.P.M., A.P.P, and Shelley Stewart, Jr., CPSM on an all-star panel called, “How We Did It”.

Another nice addition this year is a Team Discount of $300 per registrant (if four or more register at the same time). ISM has always had a team discount, but the increase to $300 is a great deal. And be sure to take advantage of the additional discount when you register before April 15.

ISM is making concerted efforts this year by attracting emerging professionals, offering more timely and relevant information, by brining in great keynotes, and making its Board of Directors and staff more accessible. I invite you to take part in the excitement.

Drop by The ISM Exhibit and say Hello.

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