“It’s all about having the right people in the supply chain”

Mick Jones, Vice President of Global Logistics at Lenovo enjoys a challenge. Inspired by Lenovo’s forward-thinking philosophies and incredible drive to succeed, he joined this high-tech computer manufacturer’s battle to help build a world-class supply chain three and a half years ago. “It was about finding the right strategy at the right time. It was about leading the Lenovo way.”

Interview conducted by Martijn Lofvers en Oskar Verkamman, written by Sarah Thompson

Lenovo is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of personal computers and makes innovative PCs including the renowned ThinkPad notebook, as well as products carrying the ThinkCentre, ThinkStation, ThinkServer, IdeaCentre and IdeaPad sub-brands. It is a global corporation of more than 27,000 employees working across 100 countries, selling products to customers in over 160 countries. Its turnover amounts to 21 billion dollars and business is constantly expanding.

As Vice President of Global Logistics at Lenovo, Mick Jones has led a transformation in the company’s logistics division over the past three years. The introduction of a new integrated business model has brought about considerable growth with a shift in the organisation’s supply chain strategies, new key appointments and renewed focus on cost, efficiency and network scalability. This year´s initiatives include sustainability, risk management and further developing customer satisfaction.

What is the Lenovo way?

“The Lenovo Way can be summarised by one statement – ‘We Do What We Say. We Own What We Do’. It has become part and parcel of the way we work each and every day – a real cultural focus on commitment and ownership throughout the organisation”.

“Each and every one of our employee’s focus is on what we call the 5 P’s: We Plan before we pledge; We Perform as we promise; We Prioritize company first; We Practice improving every day; and we constantly act as innovating Pioneers”.

“We’ve gone from 0 to 100 mph in a lot shorter timescale than most organisations would even envisage! While most organisations evolve this kind of network supply chain over 10 years, we’ve done it in just 4. It has been a fantastically interesting and exciting mix of change, growth and development, for our people, our products, our organisation and for me personally. After the merger with IBM’s PC Division in the US, Lenovo was challenged with combining two very different business cultures into one unified force, and it’s worked. Lenovo has an exceptional way of looking at the world which involves innovative thinking, innovative products and sound business philosophies. That is the Lenovo way!”

You mention IBM and mixing business cultures. What else has changed since the merger?

“We’ve grown! And more specifically, we have grown from east to west, something that goes a little against the grain. If you go to any Beijing shopping street, you’ll see more Lenovo signs than any of our western competitors. Our market share in China is a very respectable 35% and we are currently growing at an unprecedented rate and winning market share in all parts of the world. We have been outgrowing the market for 9 consecutive quarters, that’s almost two and a half years! And we have quickly grown in size globally with a 14% market share in the fourth quarter of 2011. We are now #2 in the PC Market. Another way of putting it is that we’ve gone from simply operating to operating very well: from good to great!”

  • Martijn Lofvers is Owner, Publisher & Editor-in-Chief of Supply Chain Movement
  • Oskar Verkamman is Managing Partner of Inspired-Search

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