Connecting People in Ingredients: How?
This used to be straightforward answer for indupro, but times are changing.
Way back it started in person supported by typewriter, later
telex and fax, flying around to have the advantage of knowing people earlier and better than others. These were times when advance information and timing were linked to travel, not being tech-savvy.
Essentially, nothing has changed: we still connect people. And we still do everything to connect people earlier and better. But the steps before, during and after that process sure are different now.
Our network was built on long term relations with people who share certain values and standards in their professional and private lives. And for new partners in business, this is still the most important: the personal aspect that makes doing business just that easier, quicker and less confrontational. Our assessment for this: part gut-feeling, part experience and another part solid due diligence. Sharing some time with someone in person usually is a proper start.
— Now for the ways that we work.
Word of Mouth
Still, this is by far the strongest factor to extend our network. Usually through people and their companies that we know for many years, we do add new connections with a head-start. Shared interests and mutual benefits are strong bonding factors.
I managed to find producers of difficult to find products by (apparently) googling better than others did. Hindered by either bad websites or none at all, I usually manage to locate certain products and producers by being inventive: Through sites of co-ops, pages of country trade missions or a PDF with the attendee list of very local agricultural events. And although the internet is the first step in the search process, usually the phone call I made with very basic intel at hand, was what opened the door.
Giving away information for free has an ROI that is not easy to measure. But for the past 4 years, sharing curated market headlines through juice news has proven itself as a "good karma" machine:
It has yielded new and important contacts, has generated new and renewed business, but mainly it has helped spread the name of indupro and myself within our industry.
The 'neutral' position we have as broker always has been an advantage. Usually we hear more than those who are linked to certain consolidated pillars within the industry. Not abusing the neutrality and respecting lines and positions, makes that we can compile complete market information without giving away sensitive details. It comes down to mutual trust essentially and we handle that properly.
Consulting and/or Collaboration
Since early October 2018 Jan has started as Business Developer for The FORK.
The FORK offers services that facilitate insight and implementation of Food Integrity on Blockchain Technology: Traceability and Authenticity.
Bringing companies together for more than the trade side of business has become a more important part of indupro's activities. Business Development, strategic consulting within the ingredients industry is something that comes naturally due to our history, expertise and knowledge of the developments in the stake-holding markets.
Get in touch if you want to explore opportunities.
As you can see, indupro evolves, stays flexible and influential while maintaining a neutral position. And it continues to do what it does best: connecting people.
In this fast changing world, it is important not just to stay on top, but also ahead of the game. By being well informed, well connected and maintaining personal contact with stakeholders inside & outside the ingredients industry makes that indupro maintains a strong position in the market.
I trust that with our meandering business attitude, we are ready for the future, whatever it brings.