Dial P for Procurement
Episode 20

We should stop using that word, "digital," because everything is digitized. As long as we keep on using it, we clearly indicate that we came from the old economy, where digital was new. Now digital is all over.

- Rik Vera

Episode Summary

In this week’s Dial P audio podcast, Kelly Barner thinks back through one of the core concepts from the March livestream featuring Koray Kose and Rik Vera: moving from the old economy to the new economy – and making the most of the time between. As you might guess, the old economy was marked by transactions, economies of scale, and clear boundaries between what was ‘in scope’ for corporations and what was not. The rules were clear but the potential for innovation was constrained.

In the new economy, opportunities will abound, but success will not be easily won by the faint of heart. If you’re looking for proof of that, consider Elon Musk. He is a confirmed time traveler from the new economy who has arrived to shake things up and give us a look into the future. In the new economy, everything is far more interrelated and interdependent, and the lines are blurred between companies, governments, and humanitarian organizations.

Will you have the courage, vision, and energy to succeed in the new economy? Only time will tell. In the meantime, just don’t say ‘digital.’

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:01):

Welcome to dial P for procurement, a show focused on today’s biggest spin supplier and contract management related business opportunities. Dial P investigates, the nuanced and constantly evolving boundary of the procurement supply chain divide with a broadcast of engaged executives, providers thought leaders give us an hour and we’ll provide you with a new perspective on supply chain value. And now it’s time to dial P for procurement.

Kelly Barner (00:31):

Hi there, and thanks for joining me for dial P for procurement. Part of the supply chain. Now family of shows, I’m Kelly Barner, a career procurement practitioner with a love for us news and most of all good ideas, no matter where they come from. In addition to video interviews and live streams, I’ll join you each Thursday to share my point of view on a current news story that presents an interesting twist for business leaders or a new way of looking at a common challenge. Before I dig into this week’s topic, we’re building out dial he’s independent following. So no matter where you encountered this podcast, I’d ask you to subscribe and even give us a review. Thank you in advance for being an active part of our listening community. Now you may notice as we get into this episode, that today’s podcast is going to sound a little bit different. We’re all on a learning journey. Me included, and I’m experimenting with the format going less scripted. Okay. Wait, we’re all about authenticity here, right?

Kelly Barner (01:34):

Okay. There’s your proof, no script. So one of the things that people who attend supply chain now live streams or listen in to P or art of procurement podcasts may not realize is that it’s one thing to listen to a guest’s conversation and respond to it live. It’s another thing to go back and listen to the whole conversation as more of an audience member. Even if you happen to be one of the hosts. Now I got over the pain of listening to my own voice a long time ago. So yes, I am at the point where I can actually listen to myself talk and not be physically ill. And one of the recent conversations that I had was from a dial P livestream. And there was so many new ideas packed into that one hour that not only did I keep thinking about it afterwards, I felt the need kind of go back and think it back through in my own mind.

Kelly Barner (02:29):

So what I’m gonna share with you today is sort of a rethinking of the dial P live stream. I did with Carra say from Gartner and international thought leader and author Rick Vera. So basically what I’m gonna give you today is a podcast in three reacts. We’re gonna start with one. What is the old economy part two? What will winning look like in the new economy? And then three, this is the really meaningful part of what we’re going to dig into. What sort of opportunity exists to be seized in the transition between the old and new economy, if we’re brave enough wise enough and have the energy to seize it. So before we start rejecting the old economy, let’s sort of define it and talk about what it is as you might imagine. It has a lot to do with scale, right? Making profits based on a one to many approach, emphasizing efficiency, first, putting relationships.

Kelly Barner (03:26):

Second, if you ever get that far, if you were to map it out, the old economy would be linear, think lots and lots of transactions, right? Very straightforward stuff from a procurement. Think about supplier rationalization. Oh no, we have too many suppliers to manage them all. And so we need to have less suppliers so that we can have greater volume and therefore buying leverage with that smaller number suppliers. But that kind of tilts you towards very large players where you’re unlikely to have meaningful strategic relationships. The, the top constraints that we’ve been dealing with primarily came down to communications and access to qualified talent. Now, a lot of the progress that we’ve made over the last four years gets us past that, right. Communications are so easy. We have access to video chats and live streams and an ability to transform enormous file sizes. And, you know, we, we are so connected.

Kelly Barner (04:27):

We were incredibly connected before we all went home to work for the pandemic. Now we’re light years ahead of where we even were now access to qualified talent continues to be both a challenge and also kind of a subject issue. What is qualified talent for each kind of role? What should automation be doing right versus what should people be doing and built into this idea of what used to be considered qualified talent was a core assumption that endless growth was always possible. We didn’t necessarily think about the fact that natural resources might be limited or that we would get a model so big that it could no longer scale and provide the proper value. Right. We kind of operated on the, just get faster, streamline the transactions, rationalize the supply base over and over again. We fell into this cycle, but there’s very little opportunity for differentiation.

Kelly Barner (05:24):

And as much as we talk about the importance of innovation, the old economy didn’t naturally set us up for that. So some of the largest success stories from a corporate standpoint that we’ve seen over the last couple of decades, they were actually leaders in companies that managed spin themselves out of the old economy and create new markets and new demand based on the fact that they were no longer tied down to this straight, you know, scale and profit and one to many in transactions. So there’s been evidence that this kind of thing was in fact possible. The hardest thing about the old economy. And I’ll be totally honest. This is something that I personally struggle with is that it’s so surrounding us. It’s so comfortable. It’s so familiar. We can’t see it. One of the thoughts that occurred to me, especially at, after listening to Rick ver talk in that live stream, is that the old economy to most of us and, you know, I’m in my early forties.

Kelly Barner (06:24):

So anybody ballpark my age, you’re probably in the same situation as me. The old economy to us is like the ocean to fish. We’re so used to it being around us. We don’t really think of it as a separate thing. It’s just the environ that we work in. And as much as we talk about bias from a racial standpoint, from a disability standpoint, from a gender standpoint, the old economic bias is something that’s in all of us. And it’s something that’s very hard to notice, but we need to try to start tuning ourselves in and being conscious to what that bias is, what it looks like and try to find ways to stop it. You know, I think one of the really simple examples of an old economic bias is around how you handle meetings. Are you someone that goes to meetings to work, or do you go to meeting to get assignments that you then need to leave and do as your work to me, the old economic bias is you go sit in a meeting, you do status, you listen to other people share their status, right?

Kelly Barner (07:29):

Then you leave the meeting and you do their work. Not very efficient, not very creative, not making the most of the opportunity to have a bunch of people together in a room. <affirmative>, that’s the kind of thing that we can try to break ourselves out of, not the stock hour long, every single week meeting where no work gets done instead ad hoc shorter meetings where work actually happens. And people walk away with very specific deliverables, not based on something that was discussed in the meeting, but based Don work that was begun in the meeting and then will spin off and be accomplished separately until the group comes back together. Again. So obviously the old economy we’re trying to get away from that, not everything about it is bad. It, it serves as a great foundation for where we are today and what we’ve achieved, but you can start to feel things tipping both towards a need for something new and in favor of the companies that have already managed to start making this transition.

Kelly Barner (08:29):

So let’s then think about what is the new economy. And this is a great idea. Something that Rick talked about in the livestream, it’s something that I know he’s written about in book and that he speaks about in keynotes. And I got my own personal live consultation on screen in that live stream. This is the very first time anytime I’ve been in an interview and I’ve had a guest tell me to stop using a word. So just in case my mother happens to be listening to this podcast, no, I did not use bad language. I was talking about digital transformation, some very typical kind of thing. And Rick stopped me and he said, stop using that word. We need to stop saying digital <affirmative>. Everything is digital. So if the water to the fish is the old economy to most of us, what we have ceased to realize is that the water has been replaced with digital, unless you’re an old photography hobbyist, there are no more cameras that aren’t digital.

Kelly Barner (09:31):

There are no more phones that aren’t digital. There are no more meetings that aren’t digital and truthfully he’s absolutely right about this. There are no more transformations that aren’t digital. So stop saying it. So now we’ve got the D word added to the list of things that you can’t say, unless you’re on cable or very late night TV. So we’re all gonna stop saying digital. It’s just assumed <affirmative>. Now there’s gonna be change as we move towards the new economy. And one of the things that I like is the emphasis on relationships. As we move away from supply chains and move towards supply ecosystems, interconnected supply networks, relationships, remember we’re starting to move away from the one to many, and we’re starting to have these many to many types of situations. Our relationships, as much as we’ve talked about them are going to start to be increasingly critical.

Kelly Barner (10:28):

Now I’ve always been very clear about my philosophy. There should be no jerks. None of us should tolerate jerk. It’s absolutely unacceptable. That doesn’t mean that we aren’t going to hear harsh things at times that we aren’t going to have to work with people that maybe do different things differently than us, but being dismissive, being demeaning, right? Treating people poorly in the new economy that is simply not going to fly and what that opens the door to are brand new measures of success. So we’re no longer measuring transactions, counting transactions, we’re weighing contributions and that’s something that’s going to exist on the individual level. And it’s also something that’s going to exist collectively, whether it is companies or industries or supply ecosystems, what are the combined collective contributions that a group of people can make for the better of everyone. Now, when we think about better, one of the challenging things I actually think about the new economy seems better, but it’s going to confuse things.

Kelly Barner (11:39):

So there’s a lot of talk about things like millennials wanting work, life balance, or travel freedom, right? That kind of stereotype. There’s also sort of a corresponding consumer dynamic where people wanna make sure that the brands that they buy from are doing sort of the right things. I know this is a podcast no-no, but air quotes, they’re doing the right things. But the right thing to you and the right thing to me are two completely different things. And the new economy is gonna create some real challenges for leaders in particular. This is where I mentioned courage earlier. It is going to take courage to be an effective leader in the new economy. There was a really interesting wall street journal article that went by the end of March. It was by James Macintosh and the title is do good. Investing is under pressure. Now this is from an investor’s perspective versus a corporate leadership perspective.

Kelly Barner (12:33):

But I think the idea is clear. So let me share a very brief excerpt with you from that article. He says, here’s the problem. ESG is trying to gauge the sensitivity of companies to the public mood, either for moral reasons or because the public matter as customers, suppliers, and employees of the companies, but the public mood keeps changing. And what counted is the right thing to do before Russia invaded Ukraine has suddenly switched before the invasion. The focus of most in ESG was on carbon emissions with many also excluding defense stocks, especially makers of controversial weapons, such as nuclear and cluster bombs and landmark. Since the invasion Western governments have put their efforts to put carbon on hold and become major suppliers of weapons to Ukraine cheered on by their voters. Nuclear deterrence is a topic of conversation again in the face of Russian threats.

Kelly Barner (13:30):

And it’s not obvious that ESG investors really want to ditch nukes yet. What’s the point of refusing to invest in nuclear weapons suppliers, unless you want to shut them down. It’s like eating meat, but refusing to finance an AOI, which is a fancy word for slaughterhouse on moral grounds. This about faces left ESG investors in a bind, at least one fund manager who had excluded weapons manufacturers, a on moral grounds has now added them back in and plenty of others are considering weather to change. So the thing that I think is so interesting about that excerpt, and again, it was from an investor’s point of view, but I think you can see the connection from a corporate standpoint, if we’re trying to gauge the sensitivity of companies, consumers apply partners, right? That is going to be shifting. Now that definitely does not work under the old economic system where you would get something in place.

Kelly Barner (14:24):

And then you would just find ways to make it more efficient in the new economy, values based systems and supply networks have to be able to flex and bend and adjust. Because if we, in fact, are going to take direction based on people’s subjective impressions about what’s good and bad in a certain set of circumstances, it’s gonna be a whole lot less straightforward about what the right thing is to do. Now we talked about courage, right? And one of the other things that we’re going to need to do to be able to face this new economy is to recondition ourselves so that our responses to risk and disruption and uncertainty are not necessarily negative. It’s been a very risky time for executives that have chosen to speak out on a whole range of social issues. And more than one of them learned the hard way that the blow back can be swift and harsh.

Kelly Barner (15:20):

Some executives have even been removed from their positions because of what they did. So we need to find a middle ground where you have leaders with courage and that show some sensitive to these social issues, where there are no longer clear lines between what is corporate scope and what is not corporate scope, but there needs to be a reconditioned sense of risk where yes, maybe we get a little bit more comfortable with disruption, but we’re not mistaken and ability to project what each individual want of us thinks about something with our appropriateness to do that on behalf of the brand that we represent. So as much as the old economy had its limitations, the new economy is gonna be very complex place. I think in a lot of cases, it’s gonna be end up being sort of a live by the sword, die by the sword, kind of a situation.

Kelly Barner (16:14):

Anything binary is probably not going to fit under this new situation. So things like sustainability were maybe in the past, we’ve had relatively rigid metrics because we were trying to ensure that the right things were being done. They were getting back into this idea of what’s, right. There’s gonna have to be an awful lot more shades of gray in between what’s considered best practice and what’s considered unacceptable on the other end of that spectrum. Now, one of the groups that I do not envy in this, maybe even more than corporations are governments, the role of governments is likely to change as the lines start to blur between in corporations and things that were typically outside of their scope. Now the government tends to regulate and as much as they view that as the best way to driving progress, in some cases, their way of driving progress is even more tightly coupled with the old economy and old ways of thinking.

Kelly Barner (17:13):

Then we see today in corporations that are struggling to move themselves to a new economy style of thought. Now they’re gonna have to be very careful about that because as the incentives to improve sustainability or diversity, for instance, increase and the disincentives or the consequences for not improving also increase, you actually create this situation where you’re incentivizing people to cheap, fake it, shine it up, make it look a little bit better than it is. And that’s not what we’re looking for. We’re not looking to put ourselves back into sort of a, not a new economy so much, but a Giled economy, right? If you think about the Giled age, it wasn’t gold. It was Giled. There was something else under the surface. That is definitely not what we’re looking to create. We’re looking to create something that as authentic as me doing this podcast, without a script that you can dig beneath the letters you can look into, the reports can ask questions into the supply chain.

Kelly Barner (18:10):

You can put boots on the ground in different countries around the world. And you’re going to find that the company’s actions and the actions of their supply partners align with the value statements and commitments that the leadership teams have made publicly. So complex place that we’re moving towards, but we not there yet. So we’re leaving the old economy and we’re moving towards the new economy. Rick described this as the Twilight twenties, this time between the old and new, this is a really exciting opportunity for people that are positioned to seize it. People that are willing to place their desire for comfort and certainty ahead of gain are not going to be the leaders in the new economy. We currently find ourselves in a battle between our fear of the unknown and our desire for autonomy, which one of those is going to win out. I actually think we’re watching a real life example of this play out between Elon Musks and Twitter.

Kelly Barner (19:13):

As I record this, there’s an enormous public battle going on between the people already running the company and Elon Musks. And are they gonna try to limit how many shares that he can buy? Can they stop him? Is he willing to take the organization over and make it literal open and free communications? We are watching it’s, it’s not their intent. It’s sort of a byproduct of the conversations that are going on, but we are watching in real time, Elon Musks say I’m willing to put my money on the line and be comfortable to create something that I think is important. It needs to and Twitter, which in some cases, although to be fair, not all is saying, mm, we need some safety. We need a day of recovery. We need to really think this through. We’re not sure we want these ideas on our platform, right?

Kelly Barner (20:06):

We know Elon Musk is a full-time resident of the new economy. He always has been. It’s how he’s achieved everything he did at Tesla. It’s how he’s achieved everything he did at SpaceX. So he’s sort of a time traveler. He’s he’s come back in time. He’s ahead. He hasn’t necessarily been to the new economy cuz none of us have been, but boy, can he see it clearly? And we’re getting to watch this all play out. Each one of us gets this opportunity to watch this go on and ask ourselves, what is our relationship going to be like with discomfort? You know, we talk about change management a lot in procurement and we always have, we usually position it as well. No one likes change. And, and I think it’s fair to be honest about that. Most people don’t love change, so we don’t necessarily have to look forward to it, but we have to be cautious about putting up walls against it.

Kelly Barner (21:02):

There needs to be some amount of embrace some openness to it. Otherwise we’re gonna get trapped in the old economy and we’re not going to be able to make our way forward. I think one of the real questions that’s going to tar to test our ability to function in an uncomfortable situation are these lines that I’ve been talking about that are getting redrawn between what’s corporate and what’s other. So for instance, one of the really interesting I heard someone pose was, you know, Zelinsky is begging for all of these weapons and governments are really uncertain about giving them because understandably, they’re not looking to trigger a nuclear war with Russia, but there are quite a few billionaires in the world acting as independent individuals that could potentially buy quite a few things off that a particular gift registry and just have them delivered. So you’re starting to get independent people, let alone corporations functioning in ways that only corporations and governments used to be able to do.

Kelly Barner (22:00):

But bringing this back down to the level where most of us work, we’re thinking again about this idea of ecosystems, what are we trying to achieve? What tools do we have at our disposal? How well formed are things. And I think one of the challenges we have to be aware of is that at every turn, there’s a possibility that we’re gonna get dragged back into the own way. If you felt uncomfortable for a minute, with the ideas that I’ve shared in this podcast, whether it’s sustainability needing to be less straightforward, whether it’s companies needing to break out of what has been traditional corporate topics, whether it’s needing to be more open to change, any response you have to feeling uncomfortable is either going to allow you to move forward into the new economy. Even with reservations, that’s fair, we’re still allowing critical thought in the new economy, or it’s gonna prevent you from building up the momentum that is required to escape the gravitational pull of the old economy, right?

Kelly Barner (23:01):

If we round off or soften the corners and the rough pieces on the things that make us uncomfortable, eventually we’re gonna take the vision of the new economy and we’re gonna look at it in our hands and we’re gonna see it is the exact same shape as the old economy, but other people are going to move forward. And so we need to make sure that we create that opportunity for ourselves to move forward. The greatest unknown, from my perspective, how we are truly going to define success. I think a lot of it’s gonna come down to relationships. I talked earlier about the weight of contributions. I think that’s gonna be important, but those things aren’t metrics. And I think even in the new economy Kaari and Rick can tell me what they think. I think they’re probably still gonna be metrics in the new economy.

Kelly Barner (23:51):

We need to rediscover how we’re going to decide what is successful. And as there are now, there are gonna be qualitative and quantitative factors to that. I also think we have to be very careful about asking ourselves what we are willing to trade for stability or vice versa, what we’re willing to lose in order to keep our freedom. Corporations are not moving in the direction of being more predictable, safer places to work, but they are moving in the direction of being far more impactful, far more authentic, far more human, far more connected and much better for those of us that are willing to work our hearts out, to get to the new economy and seize all of the opportunities that it has to offer. That’s my point of view. Anyway, thank you for listening to this audio episode of dial P for procurement, but don’t just listen, join the conversation and let me know what you think on this topic or on this new format I’m trying out. I can take it. Let’s work together to figure out the best solution until next time. This is Kelly Barner for dial P for procurement on supply chain. Now have a great rest of your day.

Intro/Outro (25:03):

Thank you for joining us for this episode, a of dial P four procurement and for being an active part of the supply chain now community, please check out all of our shows and events@supplychainnow.com. Make sure you follow dial P four procurement on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook to catch all the latest programming details. We’ll see you soon for the next episode of dial P four procurement.

Hosts

Kelly Barner

Host, Dial P for Procurement

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

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

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Vicki White

Controller

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

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

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Allison Giddens

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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

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Greg White

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

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

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

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

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Karin Bursa

Host of TEKTOK

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

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

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

Mary Kate Soliva is 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.

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Jeff Miller

Host

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

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Amanda Luton

Chief Marketing Officer

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

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

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Billy Taylor

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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

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

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

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

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

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

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

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Katherine Hintz

Sales and Marketing Coordinator

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

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Ben Harris

Host

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

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Page Siplon

Host, The Freight Insider

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

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

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

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

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

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Alex Bramley

Sales Support Intern

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

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