The ConnXion Point Blog

CEO’s Desk: The Network Effect of Tier 2 Diversity Tracking and Reporting

by Feoshia Davis on August 14, 2014

By Rod Robinson ConnXus CEO and Founder In an earlier post, I discussed how Tier 2, if leveraged properly, could be a catalyst for moving the needle on supplier diversity.  My thoughts on this topic have been shaped over decades of working in the supplier diversity arena. As I mentioned in my earlier post, businesses owned by women and minorities represent more than 50% of all US businesses, but only generate 6% of the revenue.  An expansion from traditional Tier 2 to Multi-Tier reporting could be a strong driver of growth for Supplier Diversity across Corporate America. At ConnXus, hundreds of companies report Tier 2 diversity spend through our software platform.  As a result, we have the opportunity to support… read more »

Posted in: Direct Diversity Spend, Diversity Spend, Help Diverse Suppliers, Indirect Diversity Spend, Minority Business Certification, Supplier Diversity, Tier II Diversity Spend, Tips for Procurement/Purchasing Managers, Uncategorized

CEO’s Desk: Supplier Diversity: Stop Looking Back

by Feoshia Davis on July 31, 2014

I’m a member of various social networking groups on the topic of supplier diversity. Like in any group, members ask questions of each other, searching for new ideas, best practices and new resources. I’ve even started posting my answers to some of these questions through via various forums. I’ve noticed a trend in these questions, and it’s bothering me. A majority of these questions are about tracking or measuring diverse spend. While truly valid questions, it made me think: Why are we so concerned with only measuring, tracking and following things that have happened in the PAST? Why are we looking back all the time? Instead, think about the good that could come from a simple shift in our perspective…. read more »

Posted in: About, ConnXus Membership Benefits, Top ConnXus Buyers, Top ConnXus Diverse Suppliers

Find us at the National Urban League Conference in Cincinnati July 26

by Feoshia Davis on July 17, 2014

Next week the National Urban League will be right in our own backyard in downtown Cincinnati. The four-day annual Urban League Conference is July 23-26 at the Duke Energy Convention Center. This year’s theme is One Nation Underemployed: Bridges to Jobs and Justice. Thousands of thought leaders and influencers from across the country will convene newsmakers, political, business and community leaders and media for four days of dynamic panels, workshops, entertainment and networking opportunities. From employment, education, and health to entrepreneurship, housing and beyond, we will address the most critical issues facing African Americans and other minorities with strategies and actionable plans for recovery and economic empowerment, while also celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act. With more than 5,000… read more »

Posted in: About, Uncategorized

ConnXus Announces Ground-Breaking Partnership With San Diego-based Council for Supplier Diversity

by Feoshia Davis on July 9, 2014

ConnXus Inc., the Mason, Ohio-based online diversity procurement platform, has announced a ground-breaking partnership with the San Diego-based Council for Supplier Diversity that will allow the Council to grow its reach and significantly expand economic opportunity for members and buyers associated with the organization. The Council for Supplier Diversity (formerly the San Diego Regional Supplier Development Council) has more than 200 minority and service-disabled veteran business enterprises and more than 50 corporate members. It also provides business and technical assistance to certified minority business enterprises. The partnership is the first of its kind for ConnXus, which historically has linked diverse suppliers with FORTUNE 2000 companies interested in doing business with minority and women-owned businesses. The relationship with the Council is different. ConnXus… read more »

Posted in: About

Facebook, Yahoo! and Google release employee diversity figures. Now what?

by Feoshia Davis on July 2, 2014

  At ConnXus, we focus on growing small woman- and minority-owned businesses by connecting them to Supplier Diversity opportunities. We believe supplier diversity is key to economic growth, and lately workplace diversity has been in the news as well. Three tech giants Facebook, Yahoo! and Google recently released major workplace diversity reports. The results weren’t surprising to those in the tech world. In all three companies, the majority of workers (especially in leadership positions) were white and male. Asians comprise the second most represented group. All three companies have said they want to increase workplace diversity, which is seen as a competitive advantage. Diversity of employees and executives is seen as an asset in today’s global, fast-paced economy. Google put it this way: “Having a… read more »

Posted in: Direct Diversity Spend, Diversity Spend, Help Diverse Suppliers, Indirect Diversity Spend, Supplier Diversity, Supplier Diversity Program

From Supplier Diversity to Wealth Creation: ConnXus Wealth Seminar

by Feoshia Davis on June 5, 2014

As part of our  mission to help small woman- and minority-owned businesses grow, ConnXus is hosting its first supplier Wealth & Empowerment Summit. This dynamic event, “From Supplier Diversity to Wealth Creation,” will provide in-the-trenches insight, information and education on securing capital to accelerate business growth from a diverse group of highly successful entrepreneurs from across the country. Our speakers will tell stories about growing businesses through strategic investment and relationship building. The summit is June 16 at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in downtown Cincinnati. We have some great speakers lined, up including:   Kesha Cash, a Partner and Director of Investments at Impact America, an early-stage equity fund that invests in high growth companies that aim to generate real financial… read more »

Posted in: About

ConnXus Names New Chief Operating Officer

by Feoshia Davis on May 7, 2014

ConnXus, Inc., announced today it has named Daryl Hammett as its new Chief Operating Officer, effective July 1.  Hammett will assume the role left by Sue Oswalt, who announced her retirement earlier this year. Hammett is currently the CEO and Head Executive Coach for Peabody Executive Coaching and Performance Management, a company he founded in 2012.  Prior to Peabody, Hammett served as the Senior Vice President and General Manager of Sears Optical, a licensed brand owned and operated by Luxottica.  While serving in that role, Hammett led the overall brand management for 900 stores in the U.S. and Canada.  He also introduced an executive coaching model to the organization and oversaw many diversity initiatives. “I have always admired Daryl’s energy, passion… read more »

Posted in: About

ConnXus Partners with the National Urban League to Increase Diverse Businesses, Support Entrepreneurs

by Feoshia Davis on April 30, 2014

ConnXus, Inc., the Mason, Ohio-based online diversity procurement platform, and the National Urban League, the nation’s largest historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization, today announced a partnership that will support diverse entrepreneurs nationwide by investing in the Urban League’s Entrepreneurship Center Program. The ConnXus Thrive Initiative will donate 10 percent of revenue from its ConnXus Plus subscribers to the National Urban League, which operates the entrepreneurship program in 12 cities, including Cincinnati, Washington, D.C., Atlanta and Los Angeles. The goal of the Entrepreneurship Center Program is for minority entrepreneurs to experience increased competitiveness and profitability, start more businesses with higher survival rates, and break in to new markets and higher growth. ConnXus Advisor John Pepper, former Chairman and Chief… read more »

Posted in: About, ConnXus Membership Benefits, ConnXus Supplier Diversity Success Stories

Why Tier 2 Suppliers Are The Future of Supplier Diversity

by Feoshia Davis on April 14, 2014

This is the first of a two -part series written by ConnXus CEO Rod Robinson highlighting why targeting Tier 2 Suppliers is the future of Supplier Diversity, and of econimic growth in the U.S.  The Brutal Facts About Minority- and Women-Owned small businesses Despite numbering over 50% of all U.S. firms, minority and female businesses represent only 6% to total annual revenue.  Since 99.9% of all U.S. firms fall within the definition of small business, diverse firms also represent more than 50% of the small business population. Here are a few more interesting facts about small and diverse businesses: Over 50% of the working population (~120 million) is employed by a small business Small businesses have generated over 65% of the… read more »

Posted in: Direct Diversity Spend, Diversity Spend, Help Diverse Suppliers, Indirect Diversity Spend, Minority Business Certification, Procurement/Purchasing, Supplier Diversity, Supplier Diversity Program, Tier II Diversity Spend, Uncategorized

Video: The ConnXus Supplier Diversity Mission

by Feoshia Davis on March 26, 2014

Supplier Diversity Programs aren’t simple, but we’re working to make them easier to manage, access and participate in. At ConnXus, we believe that Supplier Diversity Programs can grow woman- and minority-owned small businesses, while making corporations more globally competitive. We’ve created a new 2-minute video with Cincinnati-based Spotted Yeti Media that shows you how ConnXus helps buyers and diverse suppliers find each other and do business together. Take a look!

Posted in: Uncategorized

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Rod Robinson

The ConnXion Point is the blog for, an online service connecting small, minority- and woman-owned businesses with companies seeking to hire diverse suppliers.

I'm Rod Robinson, founder and chief connector of I've spent 15 years in the procurement business as a minority business owner, company procurement officer and industry consultant.

The ConnXion Point will focus on issues, events and news about procurement and supplier diversity. So, whether you're purchasing or selling, we'll have information you can use. We also hope to facilitate a healthy, respectful exchange of viewpoints on issues surrounding supplier diversity and procurement.

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