How does a company create an experience so extraordinary that people want to talk about it? Join us as we sit down with author, speaker, and consultant Dan Gingiss to discuss the secret behind crafting remarkable customer interactions. In this episode, we talk about Dan’s new book, how McDonald’s could do better, and what a taco truck can teach us about the customer experience.
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Scott Luton (00:32):
Good morning, Scott. Luton here with you on supply chain now, welcome to today’s show. Now, in this episode, we’re talking all about customer experience and then some, what is it, why does it matter perhaps now more than ever, and what are some of the leading companies doing to optimize their approach to CX and much, much more so stay tuned. Hey, quick programming. Uh, before we get started here today, if you didn’t love this conversation and you’re going to, because we have a home run guest, Hey, make sure you find supply chain now and subscribe. So don’t miss future conversations just like this. Okay. So as you can see, we have a wonderful guests here today. I want to introduce our special guests. So, uh, our guests today is an internationally acclaimed keynote speaker, coach consultant, author, and much, much more for over 20 years. Our guests led marketing teams in almost every marketing channel imaginable. He worked for some of the biggest brands that everyone knows and loves, including McDonald’s Humana and discover. He’s a true thought leader and subject matter expert on critical topics, including customer experience, which is really all the rage. A lot of companies are learning how to get this right here lately. And he has recently completed what is being called, quote, the go-to resource for customer experience, a book entitled the experience maker. So we’ve got to welcome into the experience speaker here today. Dan Gingiss Dan, how you doing this afternoon? Well,
Dan Gingiss (01:55):
Thank you for that amazing introduction to Scott. I’m super excited to be here with you and talk some supply chain and customer experience and how it all goes together. Love
Scott Luton (02:05):
It. But you know, I skipped right over this personal note here, cause you’ve got a bunch of them on your website and I love that kind of stuff. And the one that I snagged was are you Dan Gingiss has sung the national Anthem in a group at three major league baseball stadium, Stan. That’s awesome. Yeah, I actually
Dan Gingiss (02:21):
Did that. Believe it or not in business school, because of course everybody goes to business school to join an acapella group. Uh, that was the first and only time I’ve been a member of an acapella group and it was a bunch of guys. I used to say, you know, we’d sit around and drink beer and occasionally sing. And it was the most fun I ever had. Uh, we got to sing at Wrigley field twice, uh, at Miller park in Milwaukee twice. And then also at, uh, I don’t even know what they’re calling it anymore, but what was coming ski park, us cellular guaranteed rate field in Chicago as well, where the white Sox play, what are the white Sox play? Yes. Uh, and it was super fun, really a great time.
Scott Luton (03:00):
Love it. So when you said acappella group, my brain immediately goes to Andy from the office and I cannot remember the name of his acappella group from, uh, from college, but what a, what a classic sitcom series. And that’s one of the funniest funniest dues. It sounds like you all have some similar stories in your background, but so if you can’t tell in Dan’s answer, you know, the backdrop is Chicago. You live in one of the best cities around the world, certainly, uh, uh, iconic American city global city. So is that where you grew up, Dan? It is
Dan Gingiss (03:33):
Born and raised. I’ve spent almost my entire life here. I went to school out in the east coast and then worked for about four years after college, on the east coast as well. And just to show you what, you know, how the world has changed. I came back to Chicago in 2000 to go to business school, but one of the reasons I was pining to come back was that I couldn’t watch Cubs games in, uh, in the east coast and there was no way to do it. And it’s so funny to think about that. Now it was only 20 years ago and obviously you could be anywhere on the planet and watch Cubs games now, but at the time it was something that was really missing for me. And so that led me back home
Scott Luton (04:10):
Love that, you know, a member, um, of course the Braves were everywhere back in the eighties and early nineties. Superstation WTB S but we got WGN where I grew up in South Carolina. So I saw lots of day games on WGN and, uh, Sean Dunstan. And of course, George Bell, when he played a couple of years, I think with the Cubs way back when, of course Greg Maddix and those early days. But, um, I bet you had a ton of great experiences as a Cubs fan, especially here lately with some of the mega teams y’all had. Well, it’s
Dan Gingiss (04:42):
Interesting for many, many years, 108 of them to be exact, the definition of loyalty was being a Cubs fan. And so I learned a lot about loyalty because, you know, anytime you follow a team that sticks for that bat for that long, uh, you gotta be loyal. Uh, and so anytime I meet another Cubs fan, I already know something about them. They’re a, they’re a trooper, they’d been through some stuff, but, uh, yeah, we got a world series win and now we’re bad again. So it’s a, it’s a full circle.
Scott Luton (05:08):
Hey, we get as a braise fan, you know, 95 feels forever ago and we’ve been through some trials and tribulations, but Hey, you know what, on a brighter note, at least baseball has been back, little sports has been back. It’s been a great departure from, uh, this pandemic backdrop, but for sure. So before we get into the heavy lifting and then kind of talk more about a lot of your expertise, let’s, uh, one more personal question for you. So when you, when, if we were to survey your friends and family, uh, and, and say, Hey, what’s one Anon, uh, one, um, iconic aspect trait attribute about Dan. That is so, so Dan Gingiss, um, that’s easily, easily identifiable. What, what trait or attribute would that be?
Dan Gingiss (05:51):
Well, I have to say when I went back to my high school reunion, people did remember me as being the biggest cup fan. They knew. And in fact, there were people that told me when the Cubs won the world series that they thought of me, like people I hadn’t talked to in decades, which was awesome, but because we’ve talked so much baseball and I don’t want people to be rolling their eyes, if they’re not baseball fans, I’m going to give you a different answer, which is that, uh, in the eighties was the execs early seventies and eighties. But I was growing up in the, in the eighties. My dad ran a family business called beingess formal wear, which is a, uh, formal wear rental tuxedo rental company, those franchise throughout the United States. So a few hundred stores across the country. And I was always, I don’t know why, but I was always a really popular guy around prom time. Like everyone wanted to be my friend around prom time. I have no idea why that was, but that brand sadly has gone the way of so many others and is no longer around. But I would say that certainly people that know me growing up that would have been something they would’ve identified with me outstanding.
Scott Luton (06:51):
And, you know, if I recall correctly, your family’s shop was in the backdrop of the blues brothers movie from way back in it,
Dan Gingiss (06:58):
Is that a very good memory and still to this day, all these years later, at least once a year, somebody sends me that clip and says, Hey, have you ever seen this? And, uh, yes, it was the famous small, a car chase scene that ends with them crashing through the window of a Gingiss former. But you are good because if you blink, you miss the sign, like you really have to be paying attention, because if you just blink at the wrong time, you’re going to miss it. But, but it was indeed one of the stores. And my dad’s got a fun story about how they came and asked him if that if they could have permission to do it. And of course they had to rebuild the store and all that, but, uh, pretty fun
Scott Luton (07:36):
That we will have to bring you back and dive into those family entrepreneurial stories and adventures. I bet you could tell us, but today I want to dive into this topic of customer experience. You know, we, we met doing some work for a large technology provider and, and frankly, you know, here in supply chain, of course we’ve been always driven by the customer, right. But, but this, the CX and, and, uh, the phrase customer experience was a new one for me. Right. We kind of think about it in different terms. So for any of our listeners that, you know, maybe have heard that. And, and it’s hard not to hear that these days, because it’s so critically important, leadership’s focused on it, but to level set can define to you, you know, in your term to what customer experience the craft discipline, what does that refer to? Sure. Well, I
Dan Gingiss (08:23):
Love how you introduced that because I could say the same thing about supply chain, that it was just really wasn’t anything I ever thought about until really until you and I met. And, uh, as we’re about to talk about it, it became suddenly there was this aha moment for me, where it was like, yeah, I’m supply chain has a huge impact on customer experience. So I define customer experience as how a customer feels every time they interact with a brand and the two important parts. There are one how a customer feels because perception is reality. So I’m sorry if your mobile app team says that they just built the greatest mobile app in the world and your customers say it’s difficult to use. The answer is it’s difficult to use. That’s how they feel, right? We have to respect that. The second thing is every single interaction.
Dan Gingiss (09:11):
And so, especially in today’s omni-channel world, customers are interacting with companies across many different dimensions. They might walk into a physical location. They might go to a website, they might call customer service. They might engage in social media. They might see a television ad. These are all different channels that they’re engaging. And, uh, and every one of those engagements contributes to how they feel about the brand. And so we have to be aware of all of those pieces and frankly ask ourselves in this digital social world at every step in the journey, would we like this to show up on Twitter or Facebook? And what my book is about is actually flipping that question on its side, which is how do we get this to show up on Facebook and Twitter? How do we make an experience? That’s so great that people want to talk about it, but you got to look at it from both angles as well, because if you don’t pay attention to, Hey, this could be shared and we, this would be kind of embarrassing. If it did get shared, that’s a pretty good hint that you might want to adopt a as some change to that experience.
Scott Luton (10:18):
So well said, I really appreciate that. And for the folks that are watching the video replay, this is what the book looks like. I was fortunate
Dan Gingiss (10:26):
To amazing minds, autograph Dan. I’m not sure if he can do,
Scott Luton (10:33):
But I love that definition. And, and you know, one of the first places my brain goes is, you know, here in Atlanta, we got plenty of, uh, interstates and highways and byways, right. And you know, a lot of folks will put a brand, whether it’s an apple, you know, from the apple company or a Nike swoosh or the popular line of coolers that are really expensive. I can’t remember the name of it right now. Yeah. Yeti. Yeah. They’ll put those stickers in the back of their vehicles, right. For free free. And in fact, they probably pay to be able to do that. And I imagine that when folks do that, they’ve gotten to be thrilled with the products and big fans of the brand as you’re describing. So whether it’s social interaction and some of what, you know, how the brands, won’t those raving fans to share on social, or as simple as the bumper sticker on the back of their car, I guess all of that rolls up into customer experience. Well,
Dan Gingiss (11:25):
What they’re doing with the bumper sticker on the cars, they’re providing word of mouth marketing, which is the holy grail for marketers. You know, marketers forever have been trying to figure out how do we get other people talking about us, because that’s way more credible than anything a brand can say, we all win. If you think about how we shop today for no matter what it is we’re looking for. We ask our friends, we ask our family, we ask our business colleagues, we go read ratings and reviews. We want the social feedback before we purchase. And so what we as organizations need to do is make sure that that social feedback is positive. I want to also point out that you just mentioned some very popular consumer brands and somebody in your audience when you were mentioning. Those said, yeah, well great. But my brand isn’t like that I’m in a boring industry. Right? Well, let me tell you, I worked for a credit card company called discover. And one of the things that absolutely shocked me when I got there is I read hundreds of pages of customer feedback. And there was a word that kept showing up that I never expected to show up for a credit card. That word was
Scott Luton (12:27):
Love. I love it.
Dan Gingiss (12:30):
My discover card, where I was like, what I get it, if you love Coca-Cola I get it. If you love Starbucks, if you love Disney, like I got that, but what you love your credit card? And the reality is I later learned in 10 years at discover, is that for years, discover has been competing on service and experience. And that’s what got people to love their credit card. I have legitimately never heard anyone say to me that they love their fill in your blank bank card. I’ve never heard that before, but I heard it all the time at discovery. And so that just shows you that no matter what industry you’re in, even if you think you’re in a boring industry or an industry where people, you don’t think customers can love you, they absolutely can. It’s just how you treat them.
Scott Luton (13:14):
Gosh, I love that for so many reasons, including discover was my first ever credit card ever years and years ago. And it’s true.
Dan Gingiss (13:22):
That’s true of a lot of people. I have a quick question about that. Was it. Did your parents have a discussion?
Scott Luton (13:27):
Yeah, that’s a great question. I think, uh, I don’t
Dan Gingiss (13:31):
Know, it’s a, it’s a leading indicator of people’s first card is what their parents have. It, it, it, it just is, you can pretty much draw a line and, and most of the time it’s true, but also what is really critical is your first credit card tends to be. And I won’t ask you if this is true with you, it’s fine. Um, but it tends to be the one you’re most loyal to for your whole life. Um, because it’s the first one that gave you credit. It’s the first one that, you know, trusted you. It’s an important moment when you get your first credit card.
Scott Luton (13:58):
Well, so that without going into specifics, uh, agree and never thought about it, but you’re absolutely right. So, um, man, I’m already learning, I got three pages of notes already. Dan, I’ll tell you what
Dan Gingiss (14:10):
Stuff about yourself here. So,
Scott Luton (14:14):
Uh, I want to talk about, so I really appreciate your kind of how we both level set it on the front end if I’m using that word, right. You know, me, me about customer experience and you about supply chain because the worlds are colliding and, and where, you know, gone are the days, you know, wait four to six weeks for delivery, right? That, that, that, and there’s blue commercials with the credit card symbols as folks were, you know, dialing the order, something gone to those days where the supply chain would just kind of how was had it just had to happen, right? It wasn’t a true competitive advantage for the most part, generalizing here. But now here in information age, the Amazon age of some folks call it, you name it where you’re getting stuff fast, getting the right stuff fast at the right price and getting it here, even though you don’t need those socks for years and years, I got to have him tomorrow. I mean, just the landscape has changed dramatically. So question for you has global supply chain management ever had this much impact on customer experience?
Dan Gingiss (15:14):
Absolutely not. I think you’re right. That we were headed in that direction, you know, in the nineties and two thousands, we were talking about just-in-time inventory and, and what’s funny is customers became customers ended up wanting just-in-time inventory, right? They want it now, they first, they wanted it in two days and they wanted it in one day. Now they want it same day, you know, and that’s essentially just in time. But I think what was fascinating over the last year, year and a half is industries as diverse as automobiles and ice cream, we’re experiencing major supply chain disruptions. And normally what I would say is customers don’t care. Like they don’t care about the what’s happening in the background, right. They just want the product there. And the challenge is for people certainly in supply chain and then also for the companies themselves is who’s going to get blamed the company, right?
Dan Gingiss (16:13):
At the end of the day, it could be a shipping problem. It could be a manufacturing problem. It could be a delivery problem. It doesn’t matter. The company is going to get blamed for it because ultimately we look at the company and we say, Hey, your job is to get me the product. I don’t care how you do it. Right. And so I often say that, that, you know, customers don’t care about your org charts, right? So, oh, well, we’re really siloed. Sally handles this department and Mary handles this department customer doesn’t care to them. You’re one company and Sally and Mary are both part of the same company and, you know, sorry, but we don’t really care that you’re in different departments. And so I think that’s been the real challenges. There’s been so many companies, some of which we didn’t expect at all. I mean, I wrote an article about the things that were hard to find during the pandemic and men was at a diverse list. I mean, it was the most random things. Try finding a weight set for your teenage son over the last year and a half. It was impossible. Right? And these are not things that you would expect if someone told you a pandemic was coming down the pike, you wouldn’t necessarily say, oh boy, better, better stock up on the weights or the Portland furniture expected, right?
Scott Luton (17:19):
Hello paper, or the semi-conductors or insert, you know, item here to follow up on that point. Or you’re talking about how, you know, customer just, they’re all one company, regardless of departments and whatnot, you know, we’ve started to see if you go purchase something at a, your local hardware store or big retailer or whatever, when you bring it home and starting to have to put it together in the instructions, it says, Hey, before you, if you’ve had any problems before you return it to the store, Hey, reach out to us. And here’s the number, right. Because I think, I think, and I’ll defer you, but I think those, those companies want to kind of cut off any problems that the past, since they know their product, they can make it right. And they can make it good without any kind of feedback hitting the stores. That’s my hunch. But, um, what would you say you did?
Dan Gingiss (18:03):
It’s so funny. I think you’re right. But as a customer, you know what I think when I see that I’m like, oh crap, what’s going to go wrong. You know, I never thought anything was going to go wrong, but now I’m afraid there is going to go wrong because if they want me to call them, oh boy. Uh, but no, I think you’re right. They want to own that. Um, it’s, uh, also, I don’t know the inner workings of Amazon, but, you know, because Amazon’s return policies are so generous, my guess is that somewhere down the road, the vendors and the, you know, the third party sellers end up having to compensate for some of that. And so it’s just cheaper for them to take a phone call than it is to pick a return to product, not to mention if the product is in box, they may not be able to sell it again.
Dan Gingiss (18:45):
And now it’s wasted and all that. So, um, I think that, uh, overall, I think it’s a good plan, but it does. It’s funny because, and this is, I always teach people this, you know, you have to talk to your customers to understand how they perceive things. And then I’d be interested to see if those companies ever ran that message by potential customers or real customers to say, well, if you saw this, if you saw this buck slip, when you opened up our product, what would you think? And I would tell them, I would think there’s going to be something wrong with this product. Right. And that’s clearly not what they wanted me to think. Okay. No,
Scott Luton (19:21):
It’s a bad, um, as a bad assumption for, to be rolling around between the ears of a, of a customer. Right. And,
Dan Gingiss (19:29):
And I I’ll tell you something else, because you’ve mentioned about building things. I also wrote an article about, uh, can I, can I name a brand positively? Okay. With that? Okay. About target. Uh, because I bought a, um, TV stand from target. Now I had bought furniture before from that wonderful Swedish company that has a delicious meatballs. And every time I wouldn’t pull up in one of those boxes, I mean, if I had hair, I’d be pulling it out because it just, I don’t like that stuff. Some people love building that stuff, not for me. So I get this thing from target and I got my son and I’m like, all right, you know, whatever, we’ll spend a couple hours building this thing. I take out the instruction guide. First thing I noticed is there’s actually words in it, which is a step in the right direction.
Dan Gingiss (20:10):
The first paragraph says, don’t sweat it. This is going to be easy. And I was like, I looked behind me in my, did they know I was sweating and already like, are they talking to me because yeah, I’m sweating it. And then they went on to explain, they said, we did all the hard parts for you. And sure enough, when you went to put the cabinet in, they had already attached to hinges, which is the hardest part. All I had to do is snap. The darn thing in, we built this thing in 20 minutes and I felt so good and accomplished. And I went and wrote this article about target and about sort of the fact that just that first couple of sentences, their instructions telling me not to sweat. It meets all the difference in the world. And you compare that again to not trying to make fun, but instructions that don’t have any words and that are sometimes hard to decipher.
Dan Gingiss (21:00):
And what have you. And frankly, never take 20 minutes, at least nothing I’ve ever bought. And so what I love about that is how different of an experience that is. And then you think about what, what did they have to do? Well, they had to buy it. They had to build a better product, certainly that was preassembled, but it was in the communication and that to bring it back to supply chain, communication is such a key part of the experience when customers are communicated with, when you give them a heads up, when you tell them what’s happening and why they are more than likely understanding, especially if they’ve had a good, long relationship with you. If you hide it and you don’t talk to them and you surprise them and they think their product’s coming tomorrow, and it doesn’t come for another week and now you, you know, a birthday has been missed or whatever it is.
Dan Gingiss (21:44):
Well now they’re unhappy. And so communication is really, really key and what I love. And I talk a lot about this in my book. There are so many places that we communicate with customers that we don’t think of as marketing or experience opportunities. An instruction manual is a great example. A legal doc document is a great example. An invoice is a great example. These are all places that we don’t have to be boring. We don’t have to be like everybody else. We can create an experience. Can you imagine getting an invoice and smiling? It’s possible. You can, even though you’re the one paying, what did he great. If we can make our customers smile when they get invoices, that’s an experience. I love
Scott Luton (22:25):
It. And I love the, I love this, this theme that’s developing from our conversation here today. Kind of what you just shared there. And going back to your time at discover where break the rules, just because the industry is what it is and there’s norms. It doesn’t mean that you as business leader or as a business professional, have to have to do just that and stay in that box. So I love that. And, and just that simple example of the, um, you know, changing how instructions are written and, and, and instead of giving the bare minimum, basically encouraging and uplifting in that one moment that, Hey, you can do this. It’s not gonna be hard. That’s the simple things are the powerful.
Dan Gingiss (23:04):
And the best thing is how much did it cost them to do that on that instruction manual, nothing they were putting in the instruction manual. Anyway, they just decided to print it with language that was a little more friendly and a little more engaging. And I always like to say that companies should refuse to be boring and departments within companies. I talked to a, I did a speech recently to a whole room full of lawyers. And I said, you know, pun intended, there is no law that says you have to be boring right there just isn’t, you can have fun. You can have a personality. And I showed them some legal disclaimers that are so funny that you want to read them. Can you imagine seeing a legal disclaimer and being like, I want to read that again, unexpected experience in a place where it, you know, you went from boring to memorable at some big difference along that line. Right. And I think the more we can do that, the more, you know, people feel good about doing business with us.
Scott Luton (24:02):
Oh, I love that. So speaking of your book, that’s what we’re referencing here today,
Dan Gingiss (24:06):
The period, this one over here,
Scott Luton (24:09):
The experience maker, uh, and that, and this is only your latest publication. You’ve had others, but let’s talk about the experience maker. So I know you can’t do it justice, and don’t give me a book quiz just yet. I hadn’t finished it yet, but tell us a couple of key points that folks can find it.
Dan Gingiss (24:24):
Sure. So the book is experienced maker, how to create remarkable experiences that your customers can’t wait to share. And if that sounds a little like marketing it’s because I spent 20 years as a marketer, and I feel like I live at the intersection of customer experience and marketing. And as I said before, I want to help companies create that word of mouth. That is the best marketing that they can have. So I introduced a framework in the book that is called wiser. It’s my own proprietary method. And wiser stands for witty, immersive, shareable, extraordinary and responsive. And these are five things that companies can do to create experiences that are remarkable and remarkable is an intentional word, literally means worthy of remark, worthy of discussion, right? And so when we create these kinds of experiences, we get customers to talk about us. And there’s research behind that there’s research that has shown that people are more likely and more willing to share positive customer experiences than they are negative ones.
Dan Gingiss (25:30):
The problem is most of us don’t have very many positive experiences with the companies. We do business with what I do this. I do this a quiz every time or the survey. Every time when I’m on stage, I’ll ask an audience, tell me, raise your hand. If you remember the last time that accompany wowed you so much, that you couldn’t wait to tell friends and colleagues. And I don’t care if there’s a hundred people in the room or a thousand for always raise their hand. That’s it. And then I say, raise your hand. If you remember the last time you were disappointed by a company, not only does every hand always go up, but I swear to you, I did a live presentation in June. The guy in the front row jumped out of his seat and said, that was just this morning, right? So let me tell you about it all he wanted to do right when I was speaking. And so the reality is most of the experiences that we have with companies are either average, boring, not worthy of remark or they’re bad. And my book is about how to create the positive ones that we know people want to share if they just had more of them to share. And I believe that can be the ultimate differentiator in many, many industries where there are not a lot of positive experiences being shared. All right.
Scott Luton (26:40):
So folks, y’all got to go get your copy, really good stuff. A lot of great stories, a lot of great, very practical advice from someone that’s been there and done it with some of the biggest brands that you have heard of, and probably still enjoy to this day, just like me, uh, with our friendly discovery card. So I want to talk about some of the news stories that I know you’re tracking, uh, enjoy your email newsletter by the way. And, um, I love your, you know, just like the target example, Dan, I love how you take something that probably thousands of other people have seen, but they haven’t stopped in a moment, call Tom out and say, Hey, this is different. This, this is impactful. This is remarkable. And folks need to take notice of this, cause this is what you should do. Uh, and your newsletter is, is, is built by that. So one of these stories that, that we’ve been looking at here lately, I know you’ve been diving into is a big Donald’s, which middle child, and I just enjoyed. She loves big nuggets and who doesn’t. We were just on a road trip to the day, stopped at our filling McDonald’s and they’ve just hired a chief customer officer. So your take, what, what impact is that going to have? What are they trying to do with that hire and that leadership?
Dan Gingiss (27:48):
Well, thank you, by the way, for calling out the newsletter, I’m going to do a shameless plug and say, if you want, if you’re interested in it, is that CX newsletter.com that will get you to it to subscribe. So I worked at McDonald’s only for about a year and just upfront. I did not have a great experience there for a lot of different reasons. And I tell a story in, you know, kind of within the framework of them hiring this chief customer officer, my, my take on it, is it better, late than never? I mean, I’m, I’m proud of them for doing it. They’ve needed it for a long time. And the, and the reason being this is the story in the, in the blog and the newsletter is that for so long, the focus was so much on the financials that the customer was often lost in the shuffle.
Dan Gingiss (28:31):
And as long as we had a good sales day, it didn’t matter if we off a few customers along the way. And I never liked that attitude because my belief is every customer matters. If you lose a customer, if McDonald’s loses a customer to Wendy’s, if the double loss, right, they’ve lost a customer and their competitor has gained a customer, it’s like, it’s like double, right? And so I think it’s really, really important. And I talked about this concept in my book called the leaky bucket, which is true of almost every company. They have a leaky bucket. These are customers that are walking out the door, and they’re not telling you there, the silent, but deadly wants, they are just leaving because you annoyed them. Somehow you didn’t deliver on the experience that they expected. You didn’t answer their customer service inquiry, fast enough, whatever.
Dan Gingiss (29:15):
And they leave. And those are the most dangerous ones because they don’t even tell you why they’re leaving. I would much rather have someone leave my business and tell me so I can fix it for the next guy than to just leave. And I feel like McDonald’s, didn’t get that. And in particular there, the story in the blog is about when they brought back their sesh one sauce, there was a lot of PR around this, a big story, because it was sort of a homegrown demand from the Rick and Morty show. And they got all these fans to request this ridiculous sauce that, you know, hadn’t been seen since the eighties. And it came back and it ended up being sort of a disaster and success at the same time. It was a success because sales were up that day. It was a disaster because thousands of people waited out in line overnight overnight to get up pack, packet of sauce.
Dan Gingiss (30:08):
Wow. And only learned in the morning that each restaurant only had like 50 packets of sauce. And so people were really angry and I was heading up social media and I’m fielding all of these comments all day long about how they hate McDonald’s, they’re never coming back and this and that. It, you know, I knew some of them were facetious. I knew some of them were just heated at the moment. I also knew some of them probably weren’t coming back. Right. And even if it was a small portion of the tens of thousands of tweets and posts, we saw that day to me, that was a big deal. And what happened internally was there was so much celebration about how this campaign drove year over year sales increases that we basically just swept the social media backlash under the carpet. And I wasn’t okay with that.
Dan Gingiss (30:53):
Um, because I think when you look at, you know, people often ask me, well, how do you calculate the ROI of customer experience? Well, you gotta look at both sides of the coin for one, right? You know, you might’ve gained some customers today, but if you lost even more, it wasn’t a net game. Uh, and so all that to say, I think that McDonald’s was in need of a chief customer officer, and I’m glad they hired one, uh, because they’re good at a lot of things. But I don’t think that that was, that the customer was always front and center. Um, and to me, that’s what makes the most successful companies excellent
Scott Luton (31:26):
Point. And by the way, McDonald’s, please don’t mess with our hot mustard. That’s one, another one is sauces it and goes, depending on what, what franchise you’re at, but nevertheless, all right. So from McDonald’s Dan, I appreciate your, your take on that and, and your transparent take on that two taco trucks. And just, just last weekend, we’ve got a, one of our favorite Mexican restaurants here in, in our neck of the woods, and they do such a great job, or we’re basically raving fans, right. But I’m starting to think from doing some of my homework on some of your POV. It’s amazing what you can learn when it comes to the customer experience from simply a taco. So tell us more, what, what can we learn from a taco truck?
Dan Gingiss (32:07):
So I, you know, one of the things I love about customer experience is it happens every day, everywhere. All you have to do is pay attention to it. And I saw this article in Newsweek that I just absolutely loved about a taco truck owner who had a frequent customer who came by several times a week. And all of a sudden this customer stopped coming by. And the taco truck owner was worried about her and didn’t know what happened to her. And so he called her and left her a voicemail that basically said, you know, Hey, it’s, so-and-so from the taco truck. Haven’t seen you in a while. Just wanted to check in and see if you were okay. Well, it turns out she actually was sick and was at home for awhile. And, uh, and that’s why she wasn’t coming by. Well, this woman ends up creating a tick tock video and sharing the voicemail from the taco truck owner in the video.
Dan Gingiss (32:59):
The video at last count has been seen more than 3 million times. Wow. And all the sudden this taco truck guy is a celebrity. Why? Because he was a human being. And because he, because he had some empathy and caring for one of his customers, he didn’t do anything so outlandish. Right. He just cared. He knew his customer enough to know that she wasn’t showing up and he cared enough to do something about it. And so I kind of asked everyone in any business, do you know your customers that well? And if you do, are you willing to call them up and check in on them sometimes and see how they’re doing? Because that goes a really long way and no, not all of your customers are going to be Tik TOK influencers, right. But that’s not the point. The point is, is that there’s a humanity to business and the companies that are so well loved and you named a few earlier on, but you think about the apples and the Disneys and all that sort of stuff.
Dan Gingiss (33:58):
They get us as humans, they get us, right. And, and we feed, and that’s why we have feelings towards those brands. And, you know, can you have feelings towards a credit card? I guess you can. Right. Which to me says, you can have feelings towards your lawyer or your dentist. I do a lot of work with dentists, right? And there are, you know, you could look at dentistry as being one of the most commoditized businesses in the world, right. They all do the same procedures. They charge about the same amount, you know, because it goes to insurance anyway, and blah, blah, blah. But imagine a dentist who does more than that and who is memorable in some way. And there’s some dentists that are doing wonderful things on social media and, uh, you know, in helping people, I mean, a fear of going to the dentist and all this sort of stuff that make them stand out so that when somebody’s sitting there and say, well, I got three dentists within a mile, which one should I go to?
Dan Gingiss (34:49):
The choice becomes easier, right? Because this guy over here has got a lot of people talking about him and saying how great it is to go to their office. And these guys here don’t see anything. So I’m going to the one, that’s got the great reviews. So it’s, to me, this works in any industry. And I want to kind of follow that by saying, I want to give your audience a practical tip because oftentimes people say, all right, Dan, this is great. But like, what do I, what do I do now? How do I start? And staying on the dentists for a second, did you know that most dentists have their office in the back of the building? And so they enter every morning in the back of the building. That is exactly the wrong place for them to enter. Because if they enter the front of the building, then they see what their patients see.
Dan Gingiss (35:38):
They walk into the, into the, uh, reception area and they look around and see, does it look nice? Are the magazines neatly arranged? Right? And by the way, are the magazines from 2007? Or are they updated? What’s the lighting? Like, how does it smell? Does it look welcoming? You know, these are things that you can’t notice if you walk in the back door. Right? And so what I want to tell you, if you, even, if you don’t literally have a front or back door is become a customer of your own company in any way that you can. And I understand a lot of your folks are, are, uh, are in the supply chain business. And they’re going to say, well, I don’t know if I can do that. Well, then maybe you become a customer of the retailer that is selling your item, or you become a customer of the shipping company that you are working with, or you talk to your customers and have them give you deep insight into what it’s like to do business with you.
Dan Gingiss (36:31):
And what the process is like, what you’re going to hear are things like, and I’m making this up. Like, you know, I understand that there’s a lot of disruption in supply chain, but I just wish you’d tell me, like, I just wish you’d inform me more. And then you’ll be like, wow, well, that’s easy. I can, I mean, I could fix that. I fix the disruptions, but I can fix how I inform people. But you won’t know that if you don’t actually either become a customer or talk to your customers. And I think we all know because we’re all consumers in our real life. When you ask for someone’s opinion, you’re going to get it and be ready because you may not like what they have to say, but it’s going to be incredibly useful to building your business and to enhancing that experience.
Scott Luton (37:13):
I love that. And it can absolutely what you’re talking about. Some folks call it a sensei walk, right? As you’re talking about the dentist coming through the front of the building and kind of very consciously going through their patient’s experience, what they’re seeing, what they’re smelling, what they’re hearing a lot of manufacturing plants, especially those that really believe in five S and six S they will, uh, use their, their continuous improvement champions. And they’ll go on these since they walked, starting in the parking lot, you know, what is it, what does that communicate to your suppliers or your customers, right? That show up in your parking lot and park, and there’s trash, everywhere, cigarette butts or whatever it is, right. It communicates whether you like it or not some aspect of your culture in your operation. And, and you gotta, you gotta, you gotta really approach that holistically to get it right. And, and, and, and those that, that do so have the strongest cultures that impact other aspects of the operation. So I love that, uh, Dan is deeply, uh, applicable to global supply chain.
Dan Gingiss (38:11):
One other, cause I know you love the episode. We’ll give you a quick other example. It’s not mine. It actually is from Howard Schultz’s book. Howard Schultz is the founder CEO of Starbucks. And one of the things, the stories that stuck out in my mind from reading his book is early days, Starbucks was trying to be like these it’s based off of the Italian cafes. And so, and, and it’s supposed to create that atmosphere. And apparently I’m not, I’m not of a coffee stomp to really know this, but apparently in Italy, adding certain things to your coffee is considered distasteful. And one of those things is skim milk, and that’s a very American thing. And so apparently some point early on in days in Starbucks, they didn’t offer skim milk as an ad, as an add on to their coffee. So Howard Schultz used to spend a lot of time in Starbucks restaurants, just sitting there observing.
Dan Gingiss (38:59):
And one day he watches this woman come in and workout gear. And she clearly just been at the gym and she ordered a coffee with skim milk. And she was told that they don’t have skim milk. And she turned around and left. And the next day, Howard Schultz told all of his stores, we’re now carrying Skimbo. Right. And I love that because that is listening to your customer. Right. But also if you go back to a, why were they not carrying skim milk in the first place? It was maybe a nice idea on paper because we want to be like these Italian cafes, but the customers didn’t care. That’s not what they wanted. They wanted the dark skim milk in their coffee, and now they get it. And now they get coconut milk and soy milk and almond milk. And all the other things that they can put in that is truly listening to your customer.
Scott Luton (39:43):
Yeah. Sometimes we can’t get out of our own way. Right. We think, we think we’re thinking about the customer, but really we’re thinking about what we want, what we think the customer wants versus what they really are communicating and shouting at us some times that they want. I love that Starbucks example. Yeah. All right. So we’re going to make sure folks know where to get the book from, but one of my final questions for you, what I love, and you’ve already shared plenty of Eureka moments, but I’m gonna ask you for one more, especially in this, in this pandemic environment where sometimes some days I don’t know about you, but I’m having three or four, especially as we see different places that are, that aren’t quite even as close as we are, hopefully knock on wood to breaking into the post pandemic environment. I mean, we’re talking about sports and the front end, and there’s, there’s plenty of other places around the globe that aren’t even back there yet. And they don’t have that mental departure that is so needed. So, but it doesn’t have to be tied to dependent. What’s another Eureka moment. That’s been a powerful one for you here. Not in relatively recently.
Dan Gingiss (40:42):
I think the Eureka moment, that is so interesting thing about the pandemic. Is it just like it shiny, really bright light on supply chain. It also shine a really bright light on customer experience. And what we found is that customers have this moment where everybody’s suffering, everybody is having, you know, either worried about their health or having health issues. They might be having financial issues are shutoff, right? And it was at that moment that customers looked and said, well, which companies are taking care of me right now? And which companies have disappeared. And I wrote another article again, based on personal experience. But if you remember way at the beginning of the pandemic, we all got these emails from every company that’s ever had our email address and they were all the same. We care about your safety. And we have enhanced our cleaning procedures.
Dan Gingiss (41:33):
Dan Gingiss (42:21):
Right. I mean, it was like a perfect match of, this is what I expect from my brokerage firm. And yes, I am worried about a volatile stock market. And yes, I could use some tools right now. And thank you for understanding where my brain was at. And so few companies did that. They all said, oh, well, everybody else has said in this hand washing and cleaning it email, we better send it to, and it’s like, what, why, why do you feel like you have to check the box? You know, just to say you did it. And I think it’s such a great example. And to me, this was a Eureka moment really early on in the pandemic is like, you know what? There are companies that are going to stand out and they’re going to win because of how they react right now, when times are tough. And sure enough customers looked at these companies and they started the number of customers that switched brands during the pandemic was ridiculous because the brands that weren’t delivering, what they needed, they said, forget it. I’m going to go find somebody that can, and that should wake up a lot of people, right. You know, if you’re not there, when the times are tough, I’m not even going to be around to find out if you’re there when the times are good. And I think that was a big, big learning for us. I love
Scott Luton (43:33):
That. What a great Eureka moment to kind of wrap today’s conversational. But if you, if you want a lot more, uh, to our listeners, if you want a lot more practical in there done that proven ideas and, and, uh, practices and insights, especially on how to optimize your customer experience, make sure you check out Dan’s book, the experience maker and Dan, where can folks find your book and connect with you?
Dan Gingiss (43:58):
You should be able to find it on any fine bookstore that you like shopping at Amazon Barnes, noble Books-A-Million, walmart.com, wherever it will be available in physical bookstores, September 14th. And, uh, also you can go to the experience maker, book.com. We’re offering a whole bunch of bonuses for people that pre-order the book that are completely free and you can get them on that page and then connect with email@example.com or on Twitter at [inaudible] I’m on LinkedIn as you know, uh, or just, you know, pay attention to what Scott’s posting. Cause I’m usually sharing and liking and on his posts. Uh, but I love to connect with people, love to answer questions. Uh, I practice what I preach. So if you write to me, I will write back and engage back
Scott Luton (44:39):
With you. Love that, and we’re going to make it really easy. We’re going to include all those contact links, social links, you name it in the show notes of today’s episode, giving you one click to get connected with Dan, the book and the whole whole shebang. So big. Thanks Dan Gingiss keynote author consultant, coach Cubs, fan, heck of a guy really enjoyed your perspective here today, Dan.
Dan Gingiss (45:02):
Well, thank you, Scott really appreciate you having me on the show and, uh, keep doing what you’re doing too. Cause it’s awesome. And this is so needed in your space and uh, and it’s great to know you and, and we’ll do it again sometime.
Scott Luton (45:14):
Sounds wonderful. Sounds wonderful. So folks, we’ve been talking with Dan, Gingiss make sure you check out his book, the experience maker available everywhere, where you get your books from now and in stores physically. It sounds like in September. So check that out. But folks hopefully enjoyed today’s conversation. As much as I have Dan is, um, I love how he, he puts it in human terms or whatever he’s talking about. He puts it in treatment terms, human experiences that we all eat can re it resonates with us, right? Those are the best interviews. So make sure you connect with Dan, make sure you get his book. If you like this conversation, make sure you find some watching out wherever you get your podcasts from and subscribe. So you don’t miss any future conversations on that note on behalf of our entire team here, Scotland signing off today. Hey, challenging you to do good, give forward and be the change that is needed. Don’t stick to the industry, norms, challenge everything. And on that note, we’ll see you next time right here as the watch now. Thanks.
Thanks for being a part of our supply chain. Now community check out all of our firstname.lastname@example.org 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.
Dan Gingiss is an international keynote speaker and customer experience coach who believes that a remarkable customer experience is your best marketing strategy. His 20-year professional career spanned multiple disciplines including customer experience, marketing, social media and customer service. He held leadership positions at McDonald’s, Discover and Humana. Dan is the author of The Experience Maker: How To Create Remarkable Experiences That Your Customers Can’t Wait To Share (September 2021) and Winning at Social Customer Care: How Top Brands Create Engaging Experiences on Social Media. He also hosts the Experience This! Show podcast and The Experience Maker Show. He earned a B.A. in psychology and communications from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.B.A. in marketing from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Connect with Dan on LinkedIn.
WEBINAR- State of the Supply Chain Report – Priorities for Building Resiliency in Your Supply Network
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.
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.
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.