For the past 40 years, the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) has encouraged the formation of mutually beneficial relationships between minority suppliers and the public and private sectors. NMSDC expands business opportunities for minority-owned companies of all sizes and helps build a stronger, more equitable society by supporting and promoting minority business enterprise (MBE) development. Since it was chartered in 1972, the private nonprofit has grown to include a national office in New York and 37 regional councils across the country.
Joset B. Wright is an attorney and former procurement executive who currently serves as the President of the NMSDC, a position she has held since 2010. By her account, the NMSDC has a bright future with lots to offer both MBEs and corporate members alike following the successful completion of a five-year strategic plan in 2011. “We will spend 2012 working with six committees to develop an implementation plan, which will shape the future direction of NMSDC as we focus on four core competencies: certify, develop, connect and advocate,” says Ms. Wright.
Joining the ranks of over 16,000 certified minority-owned businesses through NMSDC is a smart decision for entrepreneurs looking to expand. “For MBEs, an NMSDC certification opens the door to allow them to compete for corporate contracts,” says Ms. Wright. But it’s not just about opportunities; NMSDC certification is also focused on business development and enhancement.
Providing top-notch programs for education and development is another priority for NMSDC. “We added a Director of Learning Programs position last year, so we can develop learning programs on various platforms for our MBEs and corporate members,” notes Ms. Wright. “We are working with our MBEs through programs like our Centers of Excellence and the Advanced Management Education Program at Kellogg to help them maximize their potential and be better supply-chain partners,” she adds.
New tools are available to help MBEs ensure that their companies are in the best shape possible, such as the NMSDC Biz Fit Challenge tool, which was launched last year. “It is a free, online assessment tool designed to help MBEs determine the financial health of their companies,” says Ms. Wright. “That information is increasingly becoming a factor in corporations’ decisions to contract with an MBE. They want to be sure their supply chain partners are financially healthy and able to execute contracts.”
Improving and serving as a resource for minority business owners is just one part of the equation for NMSDC; they also strive to meet the wants and needs of their corporate members. “Corporations benefit from being members of NMSDC because they have access to more than 16,000 “For MBEs, an NMSDC certification opens the door to allow them to compete for corporate contracts,” —Joset B. Wright, President of the NMSDC certified minority suppliers, as well as a host of educational and developmental programs provided by NMSDC.”
Corporations are setting their sights larger than ever for their MBE participation. “Our corporate members say they need MBEs with more scale and capacity to handle large contracts,” says Ms. Wright. “NMSDC is here to meet that need.”
Learn more about the NMSDC and its programs online at www.nmsdc.org.