I appreciate that we're always rushed and that sometimes it feels like there's no time for pleasantries, but being a nice customer can often give you as much mindshare with a vendor as being a large customer. Yes, those customers spending millions will get the attention of the whole organization as they dangle large purchase orders in front of their vendors but they are the toughest and perhaps least rewarding of the vendors clients. They are regularly pushing margins to paper-thin levels, demanding ridiculously high levels of service, expecting impossible delivery time,s and paying later than they should. They are more often than not playing the bad cop role.
A good supply chain is the foundation of your product's success as are the vendors in that supply chain. They reflect upon you in terms of performance and they reflect upon your brand in their operating style. It isn't a case of them needing you more than you need them – it's a case of a mutually beneficial partnership. Here are a few good ways to make yourself the good cop in these interactions:
Use these methods of killing your suppliers and you'll find yourself a top priority for them.