“Customers are still going to demand to get their product as soon as possible. And customers aren’t going to want to pay price increases for the additional costs that we incur as an organization within our supply chain. So that just means that we’re going to have to become even more innovative.”
-Dr. Troy Montgomery
In this special episode of This Week in Business History, host Scott W. Luton welcomes Dr. Troy Montgomery to the show, who brings a ton of perspective as it relates to business lessons learned from recent history. The conversation covers a wide range of topics, including: how Peloton has become an exceptional supply chain case study; the legends of Fred “Doc Holliday” Tolbert, Judy Montgomery & Dan Berry; and how & why Customer Experience is dominating many business conversations today.
Scott Luton (00:00):
Hey, good morning, Scott Luton with you here on this week in business history. Welcome to today’s show. We’re departing from the script again on this episode, you know, traditionally I pick several stories from a business history, especially ones that offer important lessons that we can learn right from the annals of business history. But today we are featuring a great mind and a great friend and someone else’s point of view for a change as we look to, uh, as we take a look back primarily on 2020 and key business lessons learned so quick, uh, quick programming note, not a coffee just yet. Uh, Troy, uh, Hey, if you liked this conversation, be sure to find this week in business history and subscribe for free. So you don’t miss conversations, just like this. Find us across social media. Hey, send your feedback. We’d love to hear from our listeners.
Scott Luton (00:49):
Okay. No further ado. I want to introduce our featured guests here today. After graduating with his bachelor’s in mechanical engineering from Notre Dame, he got his start at general electric iconic business brand. He led a team of over a hundred associates later. Our guests managed a business portfolio valued over $200 million who can relate to that while earning his MBA from the university of Georgia, his doctorate in business administration from the university of South Florida. Our guest has spent 15 to 20 years. I’m going to say in banking, healthcare, and consulting when not teaching and giving back to the current incredibly sharp future business leaders, uh, global business leaders that are matriculating through the university of Georgia he’s coaching and consulting with organizations looking to drive successful change. So join me in welcoming Dr. Troy Montgomery faculty member with the Terry college of business that UGA and managing partner of S C N E partners. Troy, how you doing, sir?
Troy Montgomery (01:46):
I’m doing great. Thanks for having me on the show. Scott,
Scott Luton (01:49):
You bet, you know, it took me several hours, all that you’ve done and try to capture some bullet points there. So I really appreciate you bringing your wealth of knowledge and experience to the show here today. And as I mentioned on the front end, it’s really neat. And I think we’ve done probably about 45 or so episodes here this week in business history, and we’ve had several guest hosts and a guest or two, and I always find it fascinating to kind of bring what they have learned from recent or far past history and, you know, kind of bringing those key takeaways to, you know, where we are today. So I’m, I’m really excited to have you here to share similar key takeaway.
Troy Montgomery (02:25):
Yeah. And Scott, there’s plenty of talk about when you think about just the last year alone and there’s plenty of learnings that I think we’re going to take away and things that are just going to change from here on out. So plenty to talk about when we talk about history, just being a year ago as well,
Scott Luton (02:40):
I’m with you, I’m with you. So, and that really, you know, on that note, before we dive into some of your key thoughts, that’s been one of the great silver linings about this age we’re living in, you know, uh, whether it is, uh, the recognition of all these incredible frontline folks, healthcare, retail, supply chain, you name it that have really move the whole world forward, or all these lessons learn that whether you’re business schools or CEOs or whatever you’re going to be studying this age. I mean, it’s already changed so many aspects of business that, you know, some are short-term changes, some are permanent changes. So we’re going to be studying this, this timeframe. It’s going to offer a lot of learnings to leaders around the world. So on that note, Troy, I really enjoy seeing you in action, especially on the education side. So, you know, educate us and our listenership, you know, what are some of the key things that stick out from the year that was 2020?
Troy Montgomery (03:37):
Well, a few things right off the top. And I think that most of us are aware of when we think about supply chain and that is the trend shifting to a significant reduction in lead time. And so we saw that before the pandemic, right? And there’s plenty of survey information out there. But one that I thought was pretty interesting came from the 2018 survey that said about roughly 10 respondents said that speed was the most important thing when it came to shipping and logistics. And then in 2019, and this is before the pandemic, right. It was up to closer to 20%. So that’s a significant shift in change. And then we’re seeing that even more in 2020 companies like Peloton. So you talk about the learnings that we have in my undergraduate and graduate supply chain management courses. We look at the book, we look at the texts, we look at the theories, but then we look at what’s actually going on right now because we don’t have all the answers.
Troy Montgomery (04:34):
And one of the many cases that we just recently looked at was a Peloton. And I think we’re all familiar with the, uh, the fitness company and they’ve got the nice bikes and treads that, uh, well, yeah, yeah. Well, my, uh, my in-laws, uh, recently purchased one. They ordered it back in November and it was just delivered in February. So they’re having a huge issue with their supply chain and really manufacturing base being over in Asia and getting the product, uh, over here with everything that’s gummed up and shipping and the issues that they’re seeing. But again, flexibility being one of the most important things to companies and individuals right now, cost is still the primary focus when we talk about shipping and logistics, but speed is becoming more and more important. So when we look at Peloton, they’re spending roughly 10 times more per bike to get it over here than they did a few months ago because they’re shipping via air carrier. So that’s just one example where we’re seeing, you know, a huge shift due to the pandemic, but also due to the trend of this, uh, lead time becoming more and more important,
Scott Luton (05:42):
You know, speaking in Peloton and speaking of lessons that we’ll keep teachable moments that will keep giving for years to come there. CEO, I believe it came from the CEO, put out a what’s become a famous communication via email, which he went in, he or she went into all of the different reasons for the challenges and, and, and, and including, you know, they mentioned they’re spinning a hundred million dollars and expert just expediting freight. And they have, uh, as you know, they have acquired a manufacturer here in North, in North Carolina, in the States to help get around some of these shipping issues. So it really is that memo alone is a such a great supply chain case study for, you know, what 2020 is.
Troy Montgomery (06:25):
Yeah. And, and, and your point there with bringing the manufacturing on shore. So they bought a company called pre-core for about $420 million that a us manufacturer of fitness equipment. So North Carolina and then Washington is where they plan to start to build some of these treads and bikes. And, and that’s just one example, right, Scott, I mean, we’re seeing other companies take that same type of strategy where previously they’re off shore they’re in Asia and not just the pandemic, but other pressures related to tariffs and uncertainties when it comes to things like tariffs and how the new administration is going to, to, to treat the global economy. So we’re seeing more of more of that onshore. And, and, and I was also talking with a flooring company, Mohawk, that’s local in Georgia here, and they’re talking about some of the same type strategies where they’ve got, you know, global suppliers, how can we get it here quicker is the answer to move to different suppliers. These are a lot of the questions that have only been exacerbated by the pandemic in 2020. And it’s great to have these cases because students don’t have the answers. I don’t have the answers, but let’s talk through it and let’s utilize some of those skill sets that were learned in supply chain management.
Scott Luton (07:38):
I love it. I love it. Uh, two quick points there. Uh, you mentioned Mohawk and, and flooring, and many folks may not know just how much flooring production takes place in the state of Georgia, including Dalton, Georgia, which by many accounts I believe is still deemed the carpet capital of the world or something like that. So at ton, that’s an important industry here in the state of Georgia. And then one of the things I want to, as you mentioned, reassuring, that is important for the years to come, especially in the information age where we all have our favorite devices, you know, just within our reach, you know, semiconductors, you know, I think that has been off shore for so long. So many of major players have kind of outsource that. Well, now we’re seeing major plants being planned. Of course, it’s not gonna solve anything overnight because these massive, you know, 10 million square feet facilities take a long time to set up and get production running, but we’re seeing more investment here and, and, and, and bringing some of that production here, state side, which may help prevent some things we’re seeing like right now with automotive production lines being slowed down, or, or even stopped due to some of the shortages shortages we’re seeing.
Scott Luton (08:46):
So I love, Hey, we’re starting on a strong note choice. So you’ve set the bar high already. So what else sticks out from 2020?
Troy Montgomery (08:54):
So, so keeping that type of thought process around lead time, it’s kind of a bigger trend than that. It’s companies are focused more on responsiveness and being flexible within their supply chain. So there’s really two parts to this one is being flexible. And then the second part is trying to reduce risk. And in order to reduce risk first, you gotta identify it. So thinking first on the responsiveness and flexibility, I love to have guest speakers come into the class. Scott was gracious enough to come into the class a couple of years ago as well, but recently I had Fred Tolbert. He comes in every, every year and, and works for a demand solutions. So I asked off work hump,
Scott Luton (09:32):
Troy, you know what his nickname is that was coined by, uh, Greg white, right?
Troy Montgomery (09:37):
Probably miss their supply chain. Is it
Scott Luton (09:41):
Close? There was one of those already in our friend, Daniel Stanton, but he is the Fred Tolbert is the doc holiday of supply chain because he tells it like it is so, uh, w we’ve had so much fun. He is such a wonderful person to collaborate with. But, um, so he came in and spoke to your class as well.
Troy Montgomery (09:58):
Yeah. And one of the things he talked about towards the end of our time together, and it came up in a question and answer is about forecasting and how do we forecast with this pandemic what’s going to happen next? And so he talked more about demand sensing, which is looking at a shorter timeframe into the future, as opposed to looking towards next year. We’re looking at smaller chunks and organizations are having to do that right now and react much quicker to the pace of change when it comes to demand another strategy, which we hear often about. So Georgia Pacific is another company that comes in and speaks to my class. And Matthew is a former student UGA, and then not Patel. They came in and they talked about skew rationalization. And I think within supply chain, this isn’t new, but it’s actually happening now. So when, when I was sitting in meetings at GE a number of years ago, we talked about reducing the amount of skews marketing, one at more skews sales, one at more skews, but manufacturing one it less.
Troy Montgomery (10:59):
And we typically didn’t win in those conversations back in those days. But now we’re, we’re seeing that. And it’s, it’s critical to ensure that you’ve got the product in place is that you’re focusing on a smaller amount of skews and a smaller amount of products and for Georgia Pacific. And you think about toilet paper and paper towels in particular, it’s really very similar product and just different packages. So it’s not as hard of a conversation to say, well, let’s limit the amount of different packages we have instead of having all these different 12 roll packs. Let’s, let’s focus on one 12 rolled pack, or just a few of those. So again, all of these conversations that we’re hearing from our leaders in business are coming back to the necessity of having flexibility and responsiveness in their supply chains.
Scott Luton (11:48):
You know, when I think of skew rationalization, that’s been such a big theme in supply, you know, especially in the last 18 months or so. I wish more industries and sectors had a freestyle machine. He was, you know, as someone I’m a big fan of caffeine, free diet, cherry Coke, right? One of those very niche products that, that, you know, probably not, I don’t know, I haven’t met a whole bunch of similar fans, but this freestyle machine that cook rolled out probably 10 years ago offers just about any drink that you want within their inventory. And it really is so efficient that it doesn’t require to your point packaging or, you know, stocking all these different raw materials. It really offers all these different skews in a very efficient and lean way. Uh, now don’t, we all don’t, we wish that so much else. Was it that easy, right? It’s not, but when it comes to skew, rash or rationalization, what we’ve seen global supply chains really limit all these options so they can protect the supply in their core core offerings. That really is, it’s been a fascinating study. And to your point, I’m sure plenty of internal wrangling between sales and operations around which skews and which ones survive and which ones, you know, uh, are shell for low. Well,
Troy Montgomery (13:02):
Yeah, and it, wasn’t, that’s a really good strategy and another strategy, which is right along that same line is called postponement, which is not assembling, not pulling together the final product, just like your drinking example until the last minute. And that enables you to offer a significant amount of variation and skew and customization. And a good example that I often share is with paint. So I love your example. I’m probably going to steal that one and start spearing, uh, in line with, with paint. But if you go to home Depot or Lowe’s, it should white paint. And, uh, and when you find the color that you want, they mix it right there. So they’re not having to hold significant amount of inventory. They’re just having a hold inventory of white paint, but it’s that same approach of waiting till the last minute to give the customer the customization that they, uh, that they desire.
Scott Luton (13:50):
I love that, you know, one of the things that comes across that I spent a while since we sat down and caught up with each other, but I’m Rema instantly reminded as you share your perspective is how lucky your students are, because clearly you’re someone that scours what’s taking place in the real world right now, you know, today and bring that into the classroom, even when it’s problems that are still being worked out, where there is no obvious answers, even the experts have to answer. And then, and then facilitating the discussion with, with students that may have the answers. I mean, that’s the kind of, you know, think of Dan Barry, who I learned from at, at the university of South Carolina, he was a, uh, furniture entrepreneur with, with three stores that, where he made his living did and did well, and that he gave back as an adjunct professor. And he brought all what’s going on. What’s really taking place, you know, right into the classroom. And, and, and let us talk and work it through, even when there were no obvious answers, those are the folks that you want to learn from. And Troy, you strike me as, as someone in the vein of Dan Berry. Well, and
Troy Montgomery (14:52):
I’m glad that you said it. So I appreciate that because one of my goals as an educator is to bring the stories from my war stories, from my experience. And then also just like you said, what’s actually going on. I was educated at the university of South Florida where I pursued my doctorate and Dr. Grant and Gill, Harvard trained brilliant guy, one of the foremost leaders when it comes to writing business cases, and I’ve had the opportunity to train under him and write a business case and a couple of business cases. And one of the things that we talk about when you’re writing a business case. So think about the Harvard business review cases, maybe you had as an undergrad or in a master’s program where there’s a protagonist and they’re faced with some business problem, and they don’t give you the answer at the end, it’s your chance to come up with a solution.
Troy Montgomery (15:38):
And typically there’s no one right answer. There’s multiple right answers, which is the case with business. So the key there is when you’re writing a business case, the best business cases to write up don’t have the answers yet. So we often think that, you know, whoever wrote the business case for Amazon or home Depot or whatever, it may be had the answer before they wrote it up, but that’s not true. The best business cases that you can write up, don’t have the answer yet because you end it with a protagonist having to go to a meeting and make a decision, or having to come up with a report and do some analysis and come up with the right solution. So I say all that, because the best cases to cover in class are the ones that are going on right now, where you have to think through. And there’s not a clear answer of what, what the outcome is going to look like.
Scott Luton (16:24):
Love it. I love that. And of course we haven’t spoken yet about your consulting, uh, work that you do. Uh, we’ll touch on that here towards the end, but one last thought, and then I will make sure we, uh, before we move on to some, a business leader that you admire and have learned from Jeff Bezos famously went in the earliest years of Amazon. And the first couple of years went and presented to, uh, an Ivy league graduate class. And I can’t remember which one it was, it was on one of our earlier episodes. And one of the students after he let them know, as he kind of walked him through the model and this, that, and the other, I said, I’m a paraphrase, you’re a nice guy and all, but this isn’t gonna work. Folks are gonna use Barnes and noble. And it’s just that, it’s that moment.
Scott Luton (17:03):
And look, we’ve all been there. I cringe at some of the things I’ve shared just in the last, probably a couple of weeks, but it’s, it’s those anecdotes make history and business history. So fascinating because to your point, you just never know. And even when you know, you think you’ve got the answer and you think you’ve got it pegged, you know, what’s right around the corner, it’s going to surprise you. So, um, so true. All right. So, so looking back, you know, kind of first part of this interview is looking back at 2020. What else before we move on to, uh, some literate leadership lessons learned, what else sticks out? Troy,
Troy Montgomery (17:35):
The only other one that I’ll share is that even coming out of this pandemic, there’s a lot of things that are going to change, but then there’s, there’s a lot of things that aren’t going to change, and that is customers are still going to demand to get their product as soon as possible. And customers aren’t going to want to pay price increases for the additional costs that we incurred as an organization within our supply chain. So that just means we’re going to have to become even more innovative on how we deliver products, how we produce products, customer service, which gets into a little bit of the consulting side. So through UGA and the executive education program, we’ve helped develop continuous improvement, uh, education through the yellow belt and green belt. So lean six Sigma, but whether it’s lean six Sigma or other continuous improvement, types of tools and techniques, these are going to become more and more important to organizations because of that fact, that customers aren’t going to be willing to pay, you know, a significant amount of increase. Even though we know on the back end, Peloton is a good example. There, we’re having to get those products as quick as possible to cut to customers and we’re having to pay for that
Scott Luton (18:42):
Excellent point. And part of what you were sharing there may makes me immediately think of customer experience, right? That this CX we’ve seen really rise in terms of importance and priority. And, and, and how many times you hear it. It’s one of those phrases kind of lean 25 years ago, maybe, you know, where all of a sudden it became the word everyone was talking about and, and a methodology. Everyone was talking about CX. I mean, we’ve got user experience and employee experience. All those were really important. And, and now more and more supply chain and business leaders are talking about customer experience to your point, focused on what, what they want, but, but also how they get it, what the processes, what experiences obviously, and how we can focus all aspects of business on optimizing that. And so it’s fascinating to see where we are and, and, and what’s that that will lead to,
Troy Montgomery (19:31):
Yeah. And when you say, see where we are, there’s an important, fundamental concept that any consultant engagement or any training that I do includes, and that is looking at the current state. And so while a lot of people might kind of glance over this fact, drawing out of simple or detailed process map is extremely important. And then in CX, we start to call it journey mapping, looking at the customer and all the experiences that they have from start to finish. When we think about our supply chain, it’s more important than ever to identify risks within your supply chain. And that starts with actually mapping it out. And you think about some of these large organizations and how many suppliers that they have, how many products they have and how complex their supply chain is. It’s an, a significant undertaking just to map it out. And then when you map it out, you start to categorize your risk and identify points where we might need some help here, or we might need to hold a little bit more inventory in this particular instance, but I can’t stress that enough, whether it’s in looking at customer experience risks within the supply chain, or just changing an it system, understanding the current state, uh, is an extremely important step before you move into solutioning and changing anything.
Troy Montgomery (20:47):
I’m so glad
Scott Luton (20:48):
You shared that. And it is such an important point. I think you and I both have been in plenty of organizations, especially when you bring in as, as your process mapping, vise rim mapping journey mapping. I think you mentioned as you bring in a cross functional team, it amazes me just how often this office has no idea what this office is doing and why. Right. And, and so immediately you uncover all of these Eureka moments and these learnings that provide for almost instantaneous. I mean, some, some of the things provide for free, simple changes that improve everyone’s experience. So it really is important that current state and understanding that and getting beyond the assumptions that so many people I’ve certainly made it myself, that we make around how things currently work. So that is worth the price of admission, Dr. Troy Montgomery. Okay. So I bet you, and I could talk for several more hours about 2020, and all the business takeaways are so many, we’re just scratching the surface. But for the sake of time, I’m really interested about this net next segment, because I uncovered something in the pre-show that I had didn’t didn’t glean from our earlier conversations. So let’s talk about a business leader in particular that you draw inspiration from.
Troy Montgomery (22:01):
Yeah. And so this was one that most of the listeners product could be familiar with, but, uh, but they probably know somebody that fits this mold. And so that was my mother. She actually was a small business owner throughout my childhood, which allowed so much flexibility. But at the time, you know, I never really appreciated what she had accomplished. So she had a, a consignment shop and had it for probably about 20 years before she ended up selling it right on the onset of eBay. And she recognized that this probably wasn’t gonna be the best business to be in at that time. And what was your mother’s name by the way? Is Judy Montgomery. Montgomery. Okay. Yeah, so he, uh, I grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, and that’s where, uh, that’s where they still are, but my mother was a school teacher, so she was an undergrad and masters in education and taught, uh, in primary school up until I was gosh, probably four or five years old.
Troy Montgomery (22:55):
So it was before I started in school that, um, she started to test out a business idea and that was a used cribs. So in our basement, she would purchase maybe at yard sales or through people that she knew some, uh, used cribs. And she, she thought there was a market for this. So this is still while she was teaching and she would have about four or so cribs in the basement. And we’ll put some ads out in the local newspaper and she’d get a good amount of calls. So that started to, uh, as she continued to test that idea. Cause we talk about this kind of lean startup approach within organizations and innovative approach and fail fast. And I realized, you know, years after living through that, that that’s what she was doing. She was testing the market and identifying that, Hey, yeah, there’s a market for a used cribs.
Troy Montgomery (23:42):
In this example, then she partnered a company right across the river in Indiana about 45 minutes away. That was a manufacturer of cribs. So she partnered with them, was able to drive over and bring and have at least one or two new cribs in the basement as well. So this started to grow and then eventually she leased out some space and that was focused on baby furniture, but she needed something more to fill that space. So she started to include clothing, both baby and children clothing, and she set up a consignment store. And so she realized when she opened the store, that it was really the clothing, not just the furniture that was driving sales and over time that became a very successful business. And a couple of things that I really draw from that is, is, uh, being in supply chain. Now just the significance of setting up the systems in place to bring in new product and then also get rid of inventory.
Troy Montgomery (24:39):
That’s been sitting for awhile. So she came up with a pretty good approach where she would sign a contract with individuals that would bring clothing in. And, uh, after a certain amount of days, a couple months, whatever it may be, she gave the opportunity for them to come pick it up, or then it would go to some different charitable organizations that they partner with. So it became really a pillar of the community as well. So not only was it a successful business, but it was also a huge help to mothers who maybe couldn’t afford, you know, going through the new clothes every few days and they could make some money as they bring back the clothes that, uh, that were gently used into the store. And then for me growing up, you know, I’d see her working in the afternoons and evenings tagging clothes, and then working through the new inventory system.
Troy Montgomery (25:26):
So this is in the, you know, late eighties, early nineties that we’re talking about. And she was on the front of having an inventory management system, uh, in a consignment shop. She had her computer in the store and then a computer at home and would bring those old floppy disks home, uh, to back up the information on the computer at home. So I think, you know, a number of your listeners can probably relate to the systems that were in place and utilizing probably not the most efficient tools, but at the time they were, you know, efficient, but then also just allowing the flexibility to serve the community as well as, you know, still be, uh, still be mom and be at home, uh, with, with me and my sister, as we continued to grow up.
Scott Luton (26:11):
I love that for so many different reasons. Uh, of course, as an entrepreneur, it hits me right in the heart. Right. Cause I can, we can, many of us can relate to that journey, but the intense focus on all the reas that’s so important these days, right? Remanufacturing, recycling, reusing, you know, there’s only probably a handful as you described that time period to eight late eighties and early nineties, clearly there wasn’t enough focus and smart people doing things in that regard during that timeframe, which, which is, is, is sad, but, and that’s kind of part of the reason where we are today, right? It’s for so many, you know, in so many different aspects of, of trying to really reach that circular economy, but here at trailblazer, like your mother, Judy Montgomery, right, right. To build a business model around that while, while also to your point, not only embracing those elements, but helping others and the folks that couldn’t afford the new stuff. I mean, we’re both fathers and that, and this stuff is expensive. It was baby manufacturers and, and clothing manufacturers are very proud of their stuff and they should be. But, uh, what a wonderful story and champion for many things that G Montgomery has been. So, uh, and I’m, I know we’re just scratching the surface probably own on of things and leadership lessons and business lessons you learned from your mother. Yeah,
Troy Montgomery (27:31):
Absolutely. Yeah. And, you know, growing up as seeing the business continuing to grow was, was, uh eye-opening as well. So she never had a significant amount of poise, but was managing, you know, four or five employees. And, uh, and most of those employees were women and mothers as well. So seeing her flexibility and working with her, uh, her team was extremely important and something that I always remember if there was a ball game or, uh, something came up for some of her employees, she was the first one to say, all right, well, I’m going to run into the store and take over the shift. And so it was amazing to, to see that and the relationships that she built, you know, w with her team as well,
Scott Luton (28:13):
Love that, uh, flexibility certainly as been, uh, a greater point of emphasis in 2020, which is neat, but it’s all, you know, the savviest leaders have always appreciated and exhibited and put an emphasis on the value of flexibility has, but for their team members, you know, whether it’s going back to the industrial age, you know, to where we are today and of course moving forward. So I, I love so many different aspects of, uh, of the story you’re sharing about your mother’s business. So we’ll have to have her own down the road.
Troy Montgomery (28:46):
Another thought on that is just that the timing and the knowledge on when to exit the business. And, uh, and she ended up selling the business, like I said, right around the onset of internet companies like eBay and other companies that were doing something similar to larger market. So, um, she had the wherewithal and the business knowledge to say, you know what, this is not, probably not the right time for her to dig into, you know, uh, an online retailer and she wasn’t willing to take the business that way. So it was time for her to exit. And she acknowledged that, recognize that, and thought there might be a better opportunity for another owner to come in and take over
Scott Luton (29:24):
Love that we got to pick our spots these days. Right. Or there are those days, any days you got to pick your spots. All right. So we’ve kind of ventured the first two topics here. We talked about 2020, and some of your key takeaways from business standpoint, that will probably be around for a long time, in terms of lessons learned. We talked about Judy Montgomery and some of the lessons learned there from what a wonderful entrepreneurial story. There’s so much there we’ll have to have her own. Now let’s arrive as we start to wrap, let’s talk about what you’re doing now, let’s do that twofold. I love how you’ve already shared some of what your emo, when it comes to, uh, educating and, and facilitating learning for your students. So, you know, any, any additional thoughts there in terms of what’s next? Um, as we, I guess we’re halfway through the current semester, uh, I’m not even sure how, how classes work these days. So speak to that, if you would. And then also, I want to talk a little bit more about how your consultant organizations and helping them get through some, some tough to manage change.
Troy Montgomery (30:23):
Yeah. So regarding, uh, university of Georgia and Terry college of business, we we’ve got an excellent program in the management department with the supply chain and operations emphasis. So we got about 125 top-notch students that are coming through that program, where they study some of the fundamentals related to supply chain, supply chain, analytics, operations, project management, but more importantly for these students there, they’re also management majors. So they have a really good and a cross-functional view of, of how to run, how to be a leader, you know, within a business. So, yeah, we’re about halfway through the semester and this semester has been odd as well as the last semester with a lot of online education. But again, I think this is going to be a shift within our higher education in providing more flexibility. I know for me personally, it’s, it’s pushed me to have more variety in lectures, more variety in guest speakers coming in variety of how the message is delivered, whether it’s video or in person or online.
Troy Montgomery (31:27):
Um, so it’s, I think it’s pushed me and probably most educators to think outside of the box. And when we come out of this pandemic, on the other side, we’re going to have a lot more tools and techniques to try to keep our students engaged. Um, so yeah, excellent. Uh, also within the university of Georgia, we’ve got a really strong executive education program where I partner with, um, this is also my business partner and my consulting firm, S C and E Dr. Don Addison. So we partnered together in delivering a lot of the same concepts to our students, both undergraduate and graduate, but more to the executive leaders, mid-level managers and individuals that are out there fighting the good fight right now, Don like myself has a number of years of practical experience. He was a senior level executive at bank of America for about 20 or 30 years.
Troy Montgomery (32:20):
And then he retired and came on within the Institute of leadership advancement at UGA. So both Don and I provide an, an academic view, but also a practical view having a significant amount of experience. So through the, uh, university of Georgia executive education program, we’ve partnered to pull together a number of different opportunities, including leading change, which there’s no shortage of change out there, project management, and then some of the continuous improvement lean six Sigma skill sets that we previously mentioned. So we’re staying pretty busy when it comes to educating the undergraduate graduate students, and then also continuing to partner and work with organizations through executive education at UGA.
Scott Luton (33:05):
Love it. And there’s so much more there, but, uh, from a timing standpoint, we will start to wrap now. I really like how you, you share. And, and again, I hate to keep going back to the classroom, but between the communicating and where you put your, your, your focus and your points of emphasis in your overall emo, I bet. And just like, I’ll talk about Dan Barry some, well, I’m not gonna, um, 30 years ago, I guess. I bet I bet students are gonna be talking about Dr. Troy Montgomery in, in a very similar fashion that, and business leaders, uh, find your consulting journey to be fascinating as well. So a pleasure to sit down with you once again, it’s been too long. Let’s do it again. Uh, maybe one of these next go rounds, we’ll include some of the, the incredibly bright folks. You, you have the chance to, um, to, to educate, but also probably learn from yourself, right? Yeah,
Troy Montgomery (33:53):
Absolutely. Scott, I appreciate you having me on and, uh, look forward to connecting with anybody out there via LinkedIn or, or visit our, our website, WW dot S C N E partners.com. Uh, be happy to connect with individuals out there.
Scott Luton (34:09):
Wonderful. And we’ll make sure that makes it into the show notes. We’re after one click here, as we try to our listener experience LX, uh, we try to make sure it’s as easy as possible for folks connect with our guests and these, and these remarkable journeys that our own. So Dr. Troy Montgomery, a pleasure. Thanks so much for joining us. Uh, again, a faculty member with the Terry college of business at UGA and managing partner of S C N E partners. Thanks so much Ms. Scott, you bet. So folks, if hopefully you’ve enjoyed this conversation as much as I have, it was kind of wide ranging, but there’s so much to talk about. There’s so many, it’s a fascinating time to be not just in global supply chain, but global business. And as, as Tori mentioned, leading through change, there’s no shortage of it out there.
Scott Luton (34:52):
So if you enjoyed this as much as I have be sure to check out this week in business history, subscribe, wherever you get your podcasts from, we offer a money back guarantee. If you don’t like the conversation, Hey, we’ll give you your money back, but on a serious note, thanks so much for joining us here today. Thanks so much for listening to our podcast series. Hey, on behalf of our entire team here at this week in business history and supply chain. Now Scott Luton signing off for now. Hey, do good. Give forward. Be the changes need to be just like Judy Montgomery. And on that note, we’ll see next time here on this week in business history. Thanks everybody.
Dr. Troy Montgomery is a performance improvement professional focused on solving problems, improving operations, and working with executive leaders to implement solutions for change. In addition to being a Managing Partner at SC&E, he is also a full time faculty member in the University of Georgia Terry College of Business where he teaches undergraduate and MBA Operations Management, Supply Chain Management, Lean Six Sigma, and Project Management. He has more than 15 years of experience working with large organizations across multiple industries including consumer goods, retail, financial services, healthcare, industrial supplies, and utilities.
Prior to becoming a faculty member, Troy served as a Strategy Engagement Leader at the health and wellness company Humana. Troy started his career as an engineer at General Electric where he successfully led manufacturing projects and later large teams in the field of operations. He moved into a career in consulting where he helped solve complex business problems and advised executives in Fortune 500 companies that included Bank of America. Troy is also an experienced researcher, adjunct professor, and dissertation chair to doctoral candidates at the University of South Florida.
He received his BS in Mechanical Engineering with honors from the University of Notre Dame, graduated top of his MBA class at the University of Georgia, and earned his Doctorate degree in Business Administration (DBA) from the University of South Florida. Troy is a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and a Project Management Professional (PMP).
Outside of teaching and advising organizations, he enjoys spending time with his wife, son, and daughter. Connect with Dr. Montgomery on LinkedIn.
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.
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.
Data Analytics and Metrics Intern
Patch is a fourth-year Management Information Systems and Marketing major at the University of Georgia. He is working with Supply Chain Now in data analysis, finding insights and best practices to increase company efficiency. Patch previously worked as an intern at AnswerRocket, a data analytics company where he gained invaluable knowledge about analytics, webpage SEO and B2B marketing best practices. In his free time, he enjoys playing tennis, going to concerts, and watching movies.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 Cisco, Microsoft, 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 University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier 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.
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.
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’.
Host, Veteran Voices
Mary Kate Soliva is transitioning from active duty in the US Army. 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.