I started my hashtag #strongertogether in 2018 - well I have to admit I “adopted” it because needless to say (and at the time unbeknownst to me) it already existed elsewhere in many different contexts, particularly around areas such as sport and broader diversity issues. I’m certainly not precious or territorial about its use. Indeed, it is heartening to see so many people and organizations recognising the strength that comes from collaboration, from working together to achieve a common goal.
So, what caused me to start using this hashtag in the context of IACCM? First and foremost, it was because I truly believe in the potential for the Contract and Commercial Community to pull together and change the world. It was also through a sense of frustration when I witnessed individuals, rather than contributing to the greater good, seeking to form splinter groups without appreciating how that operates to the detriment of the entire community, lessening its voice and creating confusion from within and without.
At IACCM we embrace both the local and the global. We run hundreds of Member Meetings a year all over the world bringing together thousands of people. We don’t exist because we believe that we are “special”, but rather that together we can achieve something special for our world.
The point is that no matter where in the world people are located - IACCM unites them under a shared vision. And by working together with that shared vision in mind, by being on a crusade together, we are far more likely to be successful.
Research consistently demonstrates that in the world of contracting, success is created through contracts that establish consensus - where there is a focus on shared governance - not imposed control. Conversely where contracts seek to establish control and impose unilateral rules, they typically fall into dispute. And as we see in our politics today, the absence of a harmonised vision is highly destructive.
I believe in frictionless borders and in my role as Global CEO of IACCM I advocate for frictionless trade. I believe in the ability for people to be mobile, to follow their own dreams and aspirations for a better life. I believe those more fortunate in this world owe a duty to support those less fortunate and I strongly object to the “well, what’s in it for me?” attitude that is sadly so often evident.
Do I believe that the only way to create that world is to exist in what would essentially equate to a global federal state? No, I don’t. But the more that we as a community are focused on enabling frictionless trade, the more we can help to enable the greater political consensus that undoubtedly is needed. The problem is that we are often not even clear on the advantages of frictionless trade. And it’s true to say that trade today is typically dominated solely by whether it’s going to create financial benefit.
Tim Cummins, IACCM’s Founder and President, recently blogged about the growth of “impact investments”, where assets must be deployed in a way that ensures societal and environmental impacts are equal to financial returns. Quoting from his blog, Tim says “Humanity flourishes when people pull in the same direction, when they care not only about personal power and status but recognise that sustainable wealth and prosperity depends on caring about outcomes and the impact on others.”
I aspire to making my own personal contribution to changing our world for the better. It is why I am passionate about IACCM and the part that I play within it. We exist to support our Members around the world, to unite around a common vision and mission. Together, we make working on the mission far more pleasurable and rewarding and necessarily bringing the vision so much closer to realisation.
We are undoubtedly a community that’s #strongertogether.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sally has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer for the IACCM, supporting the IACCM global team in the pursuit of both the recognition of and excellence in Commercial and Contract Management.
Sally is an experienced and accomplished commercial and contracts management professional, holding senior commercial positions at a range of corporate and multi-national organizations. After gaining an Honors degree in Law, Sally spent her time in house in the corporate sector, where she worked globally in the Telecomms and IT industries, before establishing her own legal and commercial consultancy in 2007. Sally is passionate about enabling business efficiency and growth through contracting and commercial excellence; she understands the need for robust business operations to drive these efficiencies, together with the requirement for effective communication and collaboration at all times.
Whether in contract development, negotiation, training or general communications, Sally has built a reputation for service excellence and responsiveness. Her focus is on the creation of positive and successful business relationships, constantly striving to ensure that businesses realize their true potential and value.