Supply Chain Now
Episode 1039

Episode Summary

In this episode of Supply Chain Now, Scott goes on location to speak with Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Espanol host Enrique Alvarez to discuss one of their favorite topics- leadership. Listen as they cover their top leadership traits for the current environment and going into 2023. You’ll hear a frank conversation between Enrique and Scott about how they view leadership and culture, as entrepreneurs, team members, and as fathers.

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:03):

Welcome to Supply Chain. Now the voice of global supply chain supply chain now focuses on the best in the business for our worldwide audience, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and today’s critical issues, the challenges and opportunities. Stay tuned to hear from those Making Global Business happen right here on supply chain now.

Scott Luton (00:32):

All right, Scott Luton here, my dear friend and collaborator, the one and only Enrique Alvarez, uh, managing director and co-founder of Vector Global Logistics. I get that right?

Enrique Alvarez (00:43):

You got that right, Scott. Thank you. And we have some kind of brewing sounds in the back. I know. You’re gonna have to edit that out or what. That’s the,

Scott Luton (00:50):

We’re rolling with it because you know what, it’s

Enrique Alvarez (00:52):

A coffee

Scott Luton (00:52):

Pot. Our listeners, if they know anything, they know that coffee fuels us all for, well,

Enrique Alvarez (00:57):

I gotta say you’re the coffee drinker. I’m making my tea as well in parallel, but

Scott Luton (01:01):

This is fun. All right, so what we are doing here today, uh, it’s gonna be a brief interview. I’m basically out to get three leadership practical leadership tips from someone like you that really believes, I mean, you’re a, you’re very passionate about, um, effective, successful, um, different innovative leadership and culture and, you know, vector that y’all built here. I recently recognized as a, in 5,000 company. Cause all the growth and success that the team’s had, you know, I think that bears it out, right? So I’m really curious, obviously you lead logistics with purpose, uh, supply chain. Now in a spaniel. You’ve been featured on a variety of supply chain now programming, so folks aren’t new to one Enrique Alvarez. But to really focus in, in a very, um, focused conversation, how many times can I use focus on three, what is three practical leadership tips, especially for this timeframe and this era and this environment we’re all working through. So let’s start with the first one,

Enrique Alvarez (02:03):

Your thoughts. Yeah. Well, for me, I think, uh, culture is very important, as you know, and the team’s very important. And I think all the success we’ve had in the past, and I’m hoping that it will be the same way in the future, is attributed to the culture that we’ve been able to establish. So, and it’s not me, it’s everyone, and it’s something you work on a daily basis. But I would probably start with the, uh, get to know people at a personal level. Okay. I think it is important for everyone in the company to get to know each other at a personal level. Make sure that you, um, genuinely think about the other person’s, uh, concerns, worries, hopes, dreams, and you make it part of the company and part of the culture too, right? So it’s important that the company that you’re working with not only understands where you’re trying to get at in life, right? Uh, with your family, with your spouse, with your significant other, but also like professionally. So it’s not just like a job for us. So I would say, say just get to know people, uh, personally and, and deeply, and try to build those good relationships and friendships, even if, um, for whatever reason they work here or not in the future. Uh, just try to be good friends with people. I

Scott Luton (03:14):

Love it. And, and I love it more, even more so because I’ve seen it in your approach. You know, we’ve known each other now for, uh, five years or so, going on six, maybe it

Enrique Alvarez (03:24):

Feels like 15, but <laugh>. But

Scott Luton (03:28):

I see it, I see it in every interaction, and I see it with you and the team and even with you. And, um, so that we’re still in the first one, and it’s really about building those meaningful relationships. But Enrique, would you also extend that to, uh, you know, supplier customer relationships?

Enrique Alvarez (03:46):

It’s not just about the, it’s not just about the, the team or the employees or people that work with you, not your clients alone, but everyone that you really work with. And, um, everyone I think is very important no matter what you do as part of a team. Yeah. Um, we have a, a lot of respect and admiration for people that deliver our mail. Like the FedEx delivery guys, Adrian in particular,

Scott Luton (04:07):

Hard work

Enrique Alvarez (04:07):

Folks. They’re amazing. And so we try to just get to know them. We always come here. They offer, we offer them coffee, they sometimes sit down. We have a quick conversation. I mean, you don’t need to go out of your way to just be nice to people. And I think that pays off, uh, enormously. Agreed. From a cultural and, um, success in your company standpoint.

Scott Luton (04:28):

Ptk, every day is what we have saying in our household. Patience, tolerance and kindness.

Enrique Alvarez (04:32):

Patience, tolerance and kindness. I love that. Ptk. Some days I need a lot of peace. Like patience, patience, patience would be some of my days. And then,

Scott Luton (04:41):

So I stole it. So I should give credit where it’s credit. I’ve heard, first heard that from, uh, a dear, uh, small friend at church and I’ve stole it from her. That’s

Enrique Alvarez (04:50):

A good

Scott Luton (04:50):

One. Yeah. Yeah. Jack, if you’re listening, I really appreciate that. Uh, and some, what’s one of the mantras, I don’t know if you’ve got one of these, Enrique, when you take your kids to school and my wife Amanda and I share those duties. I’ve got about 13 things that I say right before we drop the kids off. Oh, that’s awesome. That we want to bake into their mindset, you know, uh, ptk every day is one of the things I share. That’s

Enrique Alvarez (05:13):

Really

Scott Luton (05:14):

Cool. Um, and I won’t, won’t, won’t bother with the other three.

Enrique Alvarez (05:16):

We’ll have to have another interview so I can learn a bit more about those other 12. Cause I think it’s amazing. I mean, I, I know it has nothing to do with the interview or where you were going with all this, but,

Scott Luton (05:26):

Uh, you learn, I’ll tell you, there’s a book to be written in Rek soon about things that we learn in Car Line. Yeah. I’m telling you. Yeah. Okay. So I love the first one. Uh, so the first one really build those meaningful relationships. And it’s not just within your four walls, it’s across your ecosystem. Right? And I, and I love that one because on the, you know, as you know, Enrique, on the good days, it’s easy to get along and do your day in, day out with anybody. But on those bad days, those strong relationships are, are what’s gonna help you overcome, overcome, uh, those challenging times. Right? Okay. So that’s the first one. What’s number two when it comes to practical leadership tips from and Ricky Outre?

Enrique Alvarez (06:05):

Practical leadership tips from me? Uh, I would say the second one would be transparency. Uh, in a, a company stand, uh, format, it would be really be candid about everything and be brutally honest about things and be transparent and vector. We’re very transparent, not only when it comes to, uh, the things we’re doing, the projects we have, the people we’re hiring, but also the financial aspect of a company. And I think this is going to be very important as we kind of go into a recession, right? I mean, we’ve always had speculation as of what will be get into a recession. Is this just inflation? Is this or that? I’m pretty sure we’ll get into a recession. There’s no question about

Scott Luton (06:45):

It. It’s a pretty good bet. Yes.

Enrique Alvarez (06:47):

So being transparent with your team is important. And, uh, so making sure they know how much we have in our bank account and how much we’re invoicing, how much our profit margins, how much or cost, how much is our payroll, how much is everyone making bonuses or not bonuses or salaries even. So we have a very open policy and I know that it’s hard to implement, but we’ve had it since we started Vector. But, and I think that’s critical as we face challenging times because all of a sudden everyone is very familiar with what we have, what we can do, what we can do. And I think everyone kind of brings the attention back to, uh, a common goal and makes the team be not only more efficient and effective, but also more focused, as you said at the beginning of the interview. Sure. And things that are important.

Scott Luton (07:31):

Well, and it builds trust. And, and with trust you can move

Enrique Alvarez (07:35):

Mountains, right? Absolutely. At

Scott Luton (07:36):

Least

Enrique Alvarez (07:36):

It’s easier to, adds up to the relationship, relationship building that we’re talking about as number one. So yes, definitely.

Scott Luton (07:44):

Okay, so number one, building those meaningful relationships, taking the time, investing the time to do that. Number two, the power of transparency. Um, and, and even sometimes with those frank conversations, you gotta have that make it transparent, but sometimes are more difficult to have, right? Still the power of transparency. And then number three, what would that be in re kay

Enrique Alvarez (08:06):

Number three. And, uh, it’s really, I would say it’s a combination. It’s really focusing on results and making sure that you prioritize what’s most important. So take out all the other noise cuz we’re all have like this every day. We always wake up and we have like a hundred things to do on our to-do list,

Scott Luton (08:22):

And we can fool ourselves with what’s important.

Enrique Alvarez (08:24):

And we’re doing busy. Maybe we just feel like we’re doing busy work, but we’re really not really making any impact. So just be very strategic and focus on results and results alone. And just do the two or three things that are going to be more meaningful and impactful and, and honestly, forget about the rest. The thing that with all the information we have, with all the different schedules we have, we’re on a very hectic life. And I’m not talking about me or you, but everyone, right? It feels busy, right? Just in general. So, um, so taking that noise out of your daily life, I think it’s a huge, huge, uh, factor in being successful as a, as a leader and as a team, right? So just make sure that the employees are focusing on the one or two things that are important. Just forget about the rest. Don’t, don’t give them a hard time for things that are not important.

Scott Luton (09:14):

I love that. Um, so I think this is Lou Holtz. I came up with this, and that’s kind of your number three kind of reminds me of this. So Lou Holtz, as he was coaching his players back at Notre Dame, I think this is one it’s come, comes from his book, but I think it stems from his time at Notre Dame where he won a national championship. You know, semen, his status is a legendary football coach and all that stuff, right? And for these busy college football players are trying to balance academics and, and practice and everything else. He tried to bullet down and make it simple, right? You know, ask yourself when you get up in the morning, what’s the number one priority right now? And then do it right? And then, and then ask yourself again, what’s the number one most important thing to do and do it. And that’s kind of a little bit of what you’re speaking to. You’re not, not fooling yourself in terms of just staying busy all the time, but really focusing on what’s important and what drives outcome

Enrique Alvarez (10:05):

And thinking about that. Like not only on a daily, weekly, monthly basis, but just, just have a plan, right? So for this week, what’s important for this day? What’s important for this year? What’s important to me and my family and everyone else? Um, and to what you were saying before about you telling your kids when you dropped them off, one of the things that I usually tell mine that actually links to what we’re talking about is, uh, you don’t have to see the whole straight case. You just take the first step. Yes. Or then just take the first one and just take the second. Cause sometimes it’s just overwhelming <laugh>, like, uh,

Scott Luton (10:35):

Especially for kids, it’s these days and what they’ve gone to

Enrique Alvarez (10:38):

Recently years. Me too. For everyone, right? It’s just too much. There’s too much things going on. Uh, so the hardest thing, and I think my number three would be just say no to a lot of things. Yeah. Just say no and I’m terrible at this, you know this. I always say yes. And then I’m like in trouble to

Scott Luton (10:53):

This interview right.

Enrique Alvarez (10:54):

To everything. But, but I, that’s one of the things that I’m working on personally, right? Just no say no. Yeah. You’re not gonna be able to do everything

Scott Luton (11:04):

Or you can and do it all poorly and not right. Not do the things you’re, you’ve set out doing this life. Um, I love that. And, and, and there’s so much synergy here, station to station is my phrase with the kids, uh, you know, slow things down. It, you know, comes from kind of a baseball term, I believe. Yeah. Where, you know, don’t always go for second base. You don’t have to stretch them. The out <laugh> station, the station’s a good way to be, right? Yeah. To your point, taking that first step, not the whole staircase. Um, okay, last question for you Enrique. Uh, since the first day I mention I’ve got it right here. I know this is an audio only interview and hopefully this audio is good quality we’re trying to approach here. But, um, since the first day I met you, this work sucks. Maybe, maybe almost the first day, maybe the third day I met you. Yeah. Maybe heard about this, this, this book, uh, why Work Sucks and How To Fix It. The Results Only Revolution. This is by, is it Callie Russer and Jody Thompson? Uh, I think you give a team, every team member a Vector gets a copy of this book, I believe,

Enrique Alvarez (12:04):

Right?

Scott Luton (12:05):

What, what, what’s the, um, if there’s one thing about that read that our listeners should know about and maybe check out, why does that book matter to you?

Enrique Alvarez (12:15):

So the book’s very important and I think it’s the base of our culture. Uh, and by the way, we give them to every single employee, and it’s actually part of the, it’s in their, uh, offer letter. They have to read it as part of the offer <laugh>. And, uh, but we also give it to a lot of suppliers and clients and, and people that we believe are, um, smart and, and interesting. Um,

Scott Luton (12:34):

So why’d I get one?

Enrique Alvarez (12:35):

You already did.

Scott Luton (12:36):

You what? I say what third? That’s,

Enrique Alvarez (12:38):

You got one already,

Scott Luton (12:40):

But, uh, I’m not smart. I’m not interesting, Rick, I gotta

Enrique Alvarez (12:42):

Copy the book. I’m pretty sure day number five is when I send you the book. But, uh, no. Um, so why is it important? It’s because, uh, you take out the noise out of the equation. So it goes back to my third point here, right? You’re just focusing on what really matters and what’s important in life. And, uh, you’re not trying to balance work and life and trying to play this kind of dual role. Uh, it’s like life is more important. Uh, and we all recognize and acknowledge that. And sometimes you’ll have to work and sometimes you’ll have to enjoy life. And sometimes you, you, you can’t pick and choose, you have to do both. Uh, and both are important. Uh, life is definitely more important. So just, uh, I think it’s just taking the noise out and treating people like adults, right? So why having to come to the office at nine in the morning and then having one hour lunch time and then leaving at five.

Enrique Alvarez (13:33):

Like, why, who, who says that’s the way we should work, right? If I trust you and you have a very clear set of goals and you’re reaching your goals, what do I care? If it takes you 15 minutes to close an account and then you want to go play golf the rest of the week, what is, it? Doesn’t matter, right? I mean, it shouldn’t feel bad about you enjoying life as my employee, or w I should be proud and happy that you’re able to do that. Um, as long as of course you’re, uh, reaching the goals and commitments and agreements as a, as an employee as well. So that’s what I think it’s important. I think everyone has benefit from it, and I think that has made our culture not only very vibrant and dynamic, but at the same time very successful

Scott Luton (14:13):

Man. And, and, uh, you know, I really appreciate that in all of it’s frankness and honesty and transparency. But, you know, hey, as the outsider in terms of not being a a Vector team member, I’ve seen it, it

Enrique Alvarez (14:25):

Feels like you’re almost are a Vector

Scott Luton (14:27):

Team. Well, I, I caught a Vector family member. Yes, we Avarez family.

Enrique Alvarez (14:30):

Oh, right, you’re an Anari Vector member. Well,

Scott Luton (14:33):

Sir, but you know, we talk about you and Vector team a lot, but it’s not lip service. You’re living it out. And I bet every team member, at least everyone I’ve rubbed elbows with in your team, I mean, they, they say it. And if they don’t say it, they model it. You know? So I love what y’all built here, what you, you continue to build. And I really appreciate your three pieces of, uh, practical leadership advice, especially for these times. So last question, I’m gonna give it bonus question. So folks wanna connect with you if they want to have you come in at Keynote. You know, you do a lot of speaking these days, uh, interviews, um, doesn’t take you away from all the great things you’re doing at Vector or all the do good, give forward, uh, things that y’all been up to, such as the leveraging logistics for Ukraine initiative where I don’t have the latest numbers, but over 500,000 pounds of humanitarian aid

Enrique Alvarez (15:23):

Is made. Well, good memory by

Scott Luton (15:24):

The way. Uh, we try Ukraine and Poland and all those folks in need, um, folks can find the information about all of that by connecting with you on LinkedIn, maybe.

Enrique Alvarez (15:33):

Yes. So LinkedIn, I would probably refer people first to our website, uh, at vector gl.com. And then of course, if you go on LinkedIn and you type in Click Vector, you’ll, you’ll see my name there. You can connect through Vector through LinkedIn as well. And, uh, send me an email, enrique.Alvarez@vectorgl.com

Scott Luton (15:52):

Wonderful. And we, we’d invite and encourage y’all to, to, you know, connect with Enrique for sure. But, but check out many of the things you’re doing, especially the leveraging logistics for Ukraine, uh, humanitarian aid ongoing initiative. So very valuable work there. And maybe on a lighter note, uh, Chica the spokesperson. <laugh>, she, is she gonna have an agent? So Chica is your, what kinda dog is she?

Enrique Alvarez (16:15):

She’s a Australian Labradoodle.

Scott Luton (16:18):

Australian Labradoodle.

Enrique Alvarez (16:19):

Okay. Basically our third kid. <laugh>. Yes. <laugh>.

Scott Luton (16:22):

Well, Enrique, uh, thanks to you and the whole Dr. Family. Love what y’all do, uh, and hope you have a wonderful and very successful, uh, closed your 2022.

Enrique Alvarez (16:32):

Thank you so much, Scott. It’s always a pleasure.

Intro/Outro (16:36):

Thanks for being a part of our supply chain now community. Check out all of our programming@supplychainnow.com and make sure you subscribe to Supply Chain now, anywhere you listen to podcasts. And follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on Supply Chain. Now.

Hosts

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

Enrique Alvarez

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more.  In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys.  She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.

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Vicki White

Controller

Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.

From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.

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Allison Giddens

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.

She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.

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Greg White

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise

When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.

Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.

Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.

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Karin Bursa

Host of TEKTOK

If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.

With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog.  He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community.  Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include CiscoMicrosoft, Citrix and IBM.  Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane UniversityO’Reilly MediaLinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight.  Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems EngineeringCarrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.

He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

Mary Kate Soliva is a veteran of the US Army and cofounder of the Guam Human Rights Initiative. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.

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Jeff Miller

Host

Jeff Miller is the host of Supply Chain Now’s Supply Chain is the Business.  Jeff is a digital business transformation and supply chain advisor with deep expertise in Industry 4.0, ERP, PLM, SCM, IoT, AR and related technologies. Through more than 25 years of industry and consulting experience, he has worked with many of the world’s leading product and service companies to achieve their strategic business and supply chain goals, creating durable business value for organizations at the forefront of technology and business practices. Jeff is the managing director for North America at Transition Technologies PSC, a global solution integrator, and the founder and managing principal of BTV Advisors, a firm that helps companies secure business transformation value from digital supply chain technologies and their breakthrough capabilities.

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Amanda Luton

Chief Marketing Officer

Amanda is a marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2016, Amanda founded and grew the Magnolia Marketing Group into a successful digital media firm, and now she develops modern marketing strategies, social campaigns, innovative operational processes, and implements creative content initiatives for Supply Chain Now. But that’s just the beginning of her supply chain impact. Amanda also served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah for several years, and is the face behind the scenes welcoming you to every Supply Chain Now livestream! She was also recently selected as one of the Top 100 Women in Supply Chain by Supply Chain Digest and IBM.  When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now marketing team, you can find Amanda with her and her husband Scott’s three kids, in the kitchen cooking, or reading.

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

Clay is passionate about two things: supply chain and the marketing that goes into it. Recently graduated with a degree in marketing at the University of Georgia, Clay got his start as a journalism major and inaugural member of the Owl’s football team at Kennesaw State University – but quickly saw tremendous opportunity in the Terry College of Business. He’s already putting his education to great use at Supply Chain Now, assisting with everything from sales and brand strategy to media production. Clay has contributed to initiatives such as our leap into video production, the guest blog series, and boosting social media presence, and after nearly two years in Supply Chain Now’s Marketing Department, Clay now heads up partnership and sales initiatives with the help of the rest of the Supply Chain Now sales team.

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

Trisha is new to the supply chain industry – but not to podcasting. She’s an experienced podcast manager and virtual assistant who also happens to have 20 years of experience as an elementary school teacher. It’s safe to say, she’s passionate about helping people, and she lives out that passion every day with the Supply Chain Now team, contributing to scheduling and podcast production.

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Billy Taylor

Host of Dial P for Procurement

Billy Taylor is a Proven Business Excellence Practitioner and Leadership Guru with over 25 years leading operations for a Fortune 500 company, Goodyear. He is also the CEO of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm dedicated to implementing sustainable operating systems that drive sustainable results. Taylor’s achievements in the industry have made him a Next Generational Lean pacesetter with significant contributions.

An American business executive, Taylor has made a name for himself as an innovative and energetic industry professional with an indispensable passion for his craft of operational excellence. His journey started many years ago and has worked with renowned corporations such as The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT) leading multi-site operations. With over 3 decades of service leading North America operations, he is experienced in a deeply rooted process driven approach in customer service, process integrity for sustainability.

A disciple of continuous improvement, Taylor’s love for people inspires commitment to helping others achieve their full potential. He is a dynamic speaker and hosts "The Winning Link," a popular podcast centered on business and leadership excellence with the #1 rated Supply Chain Now Network. As a leadership guru, Taylor has earned several invitations to universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Army to demonstrate how to achieve and sustain effective results through cultural acceptance and employee ownership. Leveraging the wisdom of his business acumen, strong influence as a speaker and podcaster Taylor is set to release "The Winning Link" book under McGraw Hill publishing in 2022. The book is a how-to manual to help readers understand the management of business interactions while teaching them how to Deine, Align, and Execute Winning in Business.

A servant leader, Taylor, was named by The National Diversity Council as one of the Top 100 Diversity Officers in the country in 2021. He features among Oklahoma's Most Admired CEOs and maintains key leadership roles with the Executive Advisory Board for The Shingo Institute "The Nobel Prize of Operations" and The Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME); two world-leading organizations for operational excellence, business development, and cultural learning.  He is also an Independent Director for the M-D Building Products Board, a proud American manufacturer of quality products since 1920.

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

My name is Chantel King and I am the Social Media Specialist at Supply Chain Now. My job is to make sure our audience is engaged and educated on the abundant amount of information the supply chain industry has to offer.

Social Media and Communications has been my niche ever since I graduated from college at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. No, I am not a West Coast girl. I was born and raised in New Jersey, but my travel experience goes way beyond the garden state. My true passion is in creating editorial and graphic content that influences others to be great in whatever industry they are in. I’ve done this by working with lifestyle, financial, and editorial companies by providing resources to enhance their businesses.

Another passion of mine is trying new things. Whether it’s food, an activity, or a sport. I would like to say that I am an adventurous Taurus that never shies away from a new quest or challenge.

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

Lori is currently completing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing at the University of Georgia. When she’s not supporting the marketing efforts at Supply Chain Now, you can find her at music festivals – or working toward her dream goal of a fashion career. Lori is involved in many extracurricular activities and appreciates all the learning experiences UGA has brought her.

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Katherine Hintz

Sales and Marketing Coordinator

Katherine is a marketing professional and MBA candidate who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.

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Ben Harris

Host

Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.

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Page Siplon

Host, The Freight Insider

Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics.  He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey class 2019. Upon graduation, she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and graduated as one of the Top 3 performers of her class in 2020. She also has a multicultural background due to her international academic experiences at Singapore Management University and Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. Sofia self-identifies as a Supply Chain enthusiast & ambassador sharing her passion for the field in her daily life.

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.

He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.

A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Nick Roemer has had a very diverse and extensive career within design and sales over the last 15 years stretching from China, Dubai, Germany, Holland, UK, and the USA. In the last 5 years, Nick has developed a hawk's eye for sustainable tech and the human-centric marketing and sales procedures that come with it. With his far-reaching and strong network within the logistics industry, Nick has been able to open new avenues and routes to market within major industries in the USA and the UAE. Nick lives by the ethos, “Give more than you take." His professional mission is to make the logistics industry leaner, cleaner and greener.

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Alex Bramley

Sales Support Intern

Alex is pursuing a Marketing degree and a Certificate in Legal Studies at the University of Georgia. As a dual citizen of both the US and UK; Alex has studied abroad at University College London and is passionate about travel and international business. Through her coursework at the Terry College of Business, Alex has gained valuable skills in digital marketing, analytics, and professional selling. She joined Supply Chain Now as a Sales Support Intern where she assists the team by prospecting and qualifying new business partners.

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