Something that repeatedly came to me as I turned the page of Greg Spira’s new book was simply, Communication. The title is indicative, simply put Trust The Plan: Demand Management from Business Leaders. It summarizes everything covered from A to Z perfectly, almost capturing the succinctness and ideas in the text like the thesis statement of an MLA paper. “This book covers the best practices of Demand Management from the perspective of leadership roles, responsibilities, accountabilities, and behaviors.


This book will not get into the nitty gritty of statistics or detailed performance measurements. Instead, it focuses on the key enablers of trust. Trust in the people, processes, and information being shared. Businesses achieve their goals through teamwork and teamwork is anchored in trust,” Spira states, near the beginning of the read. He also writes, “Rarely would I describe the actions of the leaders I worked with as malicious. In almost every case, the road to hell is paved with good intentions… One or two levels down in the organization, people tend not to have the same understanding and empathy for the challenges faced by the business leaders. It wouldn’t be hard to imagine a demand planner, brand manager, or materials buyer at SmartCorp thinking that the leadership team is dysfunctional, unable to agree on a plan, and always blaming one another for disappointing performance.”

Once again – Communication. One of the most pivotal aspects of human interaction. One of the most critical things existing in both a personal, and professional capacity.

The line between one’s personal conduct and professional conduct has become nonexistent, a sort of interlinked relationship now existing between the two. Particularly when it comes to echelon-based systems, this sense of being interlinked proves crucial. Today, stats show there is more isolation and echo chamber mentality than ever before.

Therefore, clear and consistent communication emphasizing goodwill as much as good business proves crucial. “In business, the confusion of plans and goals is unfortunately quite common. In fact, the language used to describe an annual target or objective quite often uses the word ‘plan.’ I vividly remember watching a heated, fist-pounding debate between two executives over which one was the real plan–the annual plan or the demand plan,” Spira states. “The Chief Executive Officer was

adamant that the annual plan was the only plan of relevance. The Senior Vice President of Operations believed that the demand plan was more worthy of attention because it included a documented action plan…Organizations that consistently achieve or exceed their goals generally have business leaders who distinguish between operating plans and goals.


They also routinely come together to adjust operating plans in pursuit of those goals…The objective of this book is to show business leaders how to develop demand planning processes that increase het probability of achieving company goals and strategies…I hope it creates a better understanding of what it takes to develop and execute credible demand plans. I also hope this book is useful for discussing within your company why it is necessary to trust those plans.”

Garth Thomas