Have you noticed that the same pandemic-related items that were in hot demand a few months ago are now being sold at bargain-basement prices? Masks and face shields are on closeout sales. Wipes are plentiful. Home desks are on clearance. Sanitizer is readily available and is so reduced that one store will even give you a rebate of $1 more than you paid!

Companies back-ordered as much as they could get of products that were impossible to stock — without accounting for the delay in arrival. So now, box loads sit idle with demand dried up and the businesses are going to have a negative return on their overzealous inventory acquisition.

It’s all a visible reminder of the interrelatedness of a system and the influence of time. If you make a change to one component (i.e. ordering far more than ever before), you need to account for a lag in the rest of the system to adjust to the change. If you adjust one policy, you should allow enough time for the implications of the alteration to show up. If you implement new initiatives too quickly, you may end up with a backlog of resentment before the positive effects of the change appear.

Those boxes of sanitizer were liquid gold when they were produced and now they are nearly worthless. When you are changing your behavior, don’t go crazy on the front end without accounting for the gap in implementation timing on the back end. How you manage the lag can determine your overall success.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: