A Newbie’s View from ISM2018 | Sievo


A Newbie’s View from ISM2018

Lari Numminen

Head of Marketing

Can you hear that ruffling sound of packing? Right now over 1,400 procurement professionals are packing their bags, making travel plans and checking out of the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville Tennessee. The Institute of Supply Managementโ€™s ISM2018 conference has come to an end and weโ€™ll need to wait another year until the largest procurement industry event in the world takes place in Houston, Texas.

As an ISM2018 newbie representing Sievo I connected with hundreds of people at the Exhibitors lounge. I estimate we handed out over 3,000 procurement love stickers and gave away over 250 Procurement Loves Finance guidebooks. Key lesson for next year is to bring more!

Over the past three days I also got to see some great presentations by true thought leaders. If you missed ISM this year, here are three types of keynotes you can expect.

Arianna Huffington

ISM2018 started with a keynote from Arianna Huffington, the founder of Huffington post and CEO of Thrive.

The core theme running across her presentation was the importance of downtime in the lives of busy executives, as she shared a number of personal anecdotes and examples from leaders such as Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Besos.

Andrew Bartolini

ISM is also the place where you get to hear from leading industry analysts, like the founder of Ardent Partners Andrew Bartolini.

In his presentation, Andrew outlined the 5 key technology trends with transformative potential for procurement.



Tania Searyย 

Not all procurement professionals are known for their networking skills, so community builders like Tania Seary from Procurious are most welcome to share insights and inspiration at ISM.

Tania started her speech by reminding us that there are over 2 million procurement professionals who don’t participate in events like ISM, like tribes in the Amazon not exposed to new innovations and ideas.

In addition, she highlighted a number of benefits for sharing ideas and networking, and emphasized that the human skills of connecting and helping each other are less likely to be replaced by robots and automation.


As I pack my bags I reflect on the experience as an ISM event newbie.

There were dozens of inspiring presentations over the past three days and there is no way you could have seen them all.

After I get home and over the tiredness, I’ll start planning for next year. I met so many awesome new people at this event and look forward to seeing everyone again at ISM2019.



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