I would stress the importance of training on the S&OP process to key integrants and ensuring Executive level commitment and ownership is attained prior to starting.
" The S&OP does not take the place of good judgement or provide easy answers. The process simply forces the right people to talk about theright areas of focus in a timely manner." Donald H. Sheldon (World Class Sales & Operations Planning: A Guide to Successful Implementation and Robust Execution)
Thanks for sharing your interview with Lalit. I agree with Lalit's view and I would emphasize one of the points he made regarding the challenges in S&OP implementations. Lalit mentions the importance of determining and assigning ownership of the S&OP process. I agree, I think any S&OP implementation without some level of organizational (and individual) ownership will be severely challenged. I believe S&OP projects are typically born from either the supply-side or the demand side. They will of course need executive sponsorship that spans the entire organization, but from a practical implementation perspective I think that the project will be more successful if the organization or individual that launched the project is also one of the primary project drivers.