Supply Chain Now Episode 526

“Our brains are not as hardwired as we used to think. You can teach an old dog new tricks.”

– Patrick Nelson, Founder of Loyalty Point Leadership


2020 has been full of challenges, but some people have managed to turn those challenges into opportunities. Patrick Nelson is a perfect example. In February of 2020, he lost his job and within an hour he had decided to found Loyalty Point Leadership, Leadership training and development consulting firm.

His leadership philosophy is based on his military service and academic career, and it emphasizes self-control for the sake of improved responses.

In this conversation, Patrick tells Supply Chain Now Co-hosts Enrique Alvarez and Scott Luton:

· How failing fast can lead to quick growth as long as you can maintain a growth mindset

· Why leadership is more about people than data processes, equipment, or inventory scheduling

· That the best learning often takes place when they are pushed out of their comfort zone

Intro (00:05):

It’s time for supply chain. Now broadcasting live from the supply chain capital of the country. Atlanta, Georgia heard around the world, supply chain. Now spotlights the best in all things, supply chain, the people, the technologies, the best practices and the critical issues of the day. And now here are your hosts.

Scott Luton (00:41):

Hey, look in they’re just like magic Enrique. Good afternoon, uh, to our audience. Welcome to bonus livestream Wednesday here on supply chain. Now Scott Luton with you here along with Enrique Alvarez, Enrique, how are you doing?

Enrique Alvarez (00:55):

Hey Scott, thanks for having me on. Yes, you’re right. This is almost like magic to me. This is fantastic. Technology is incredible. And we’ve been using it this year. Haven’t we?

Scott Luton (01:05):

Oh, in droves. Goodness gracious. But you know, this has been a great day here, uh, between, uh, supply chain now and the vector global logistics team. It started early with a wonderful conversation, which we’ll touch on in a minute, but it’s going to get even better. Cause today’s live streams. Today’s uh, impromptu ad hoc live stream. We’re talking about leadership and we’re getting some practical insights from a decorated combat veteran and leadership expert. And we’ve gotten a ton of feedback.

Scott Luton (01:33):

We had, uh, this gentleman own a interview on veteran voices last week. Got a ton of feedback on that. And this is our community’s opportunity, not just asking questions and hear from Patrick firsthand, but to give their take on what makes an effective leader in a challenging year like this. So Enrique, are you ready? I am ready. And um, yes, I’m very excited. He’s a great, great, uh, example and has a really interesting life story. So I’m sure that this is going to be, this is going to be fun and inspirational for sure. Agreed. Um, all right. So before we get started two things, uh, three things, actually, I’m gonna add to the list first off, quick programming. If you enjoyed this live stream, be sure to check us out wherever you get your podcasts from search for supply chain now and make sure you subscribe.

Scott Luton (02:16):

So you don’t miss conversations, just like this one. Number one, number two, want to say hello, Gary Smith has already with us here. Gary is stepping in to our, this week in business history series. And it’s got a fascinating episode on the Wright brothers who have a historical anniversary coming up here next week. So hello, Gary. And then thirdly, Enrique, we mentioned, we got up early this morning for one of our most rewarding recent conversations, uh, that I’ve been a part of. So tell us more. Who do we talk to? No, it was a really good conversation. We basically talked to the legends son, uh, and it was a amazing unheard daughter, David Robinson and Metta Robinson. Um, so

Enrique Alvarez (03:00):

One of the legendary Jackie Robinson and what it was a really inspirational, uh, I guess time and interview with him and, uh, uh, very interesting. I learned a lot about him, a lot about, uh, his life and about his fashion and the fact that he, of all things is now in, uh, Tanzania helping, helping a community there by growing coffee. So very, very exciting, very interesting too

Scott Luton (03:26):

Agreed. And, and, you know, Enrique and Greg and Adrian and I, we probably had 47 pages of notes between us. There was that fascinating conversation. And two quick takeaways, number one, you know, when I was learning about Jackie Robinson in school, it was always about him, right? And his incredible, um, uh, contributions, uh, breaking barriers, a number of different ways, but gosh, his wife has extended family, uh, what they’ve done, what they’ve continued to do and what they, how they continue to push the bar, uh, challenging others to help build bridges and, and make things better for all. It was really inspirational. And this quick quote came from the interview, find where big issues are and do what you can. And boy, the Robinson family have been bringing it and doing a lot. So rewarding episode look for the replay in about two weeks. And it was a fascinating conversation for sure. All right. So we want to say hello to Shabaam, who, uh, is tuned in via LinkedIn. Great to have you earlier, earlier this week, Shabaam own, uh, the supply chain buzz, uh, looking forward to hearing you and Gary and any of our other audience members and your takes on what makes effective leadership. Alright, so are we ready to bring in our featured guests here today and Rica? You ready? I’m ready. You’re always ready. Always ready. I was about to say when we first came live, Greg white, you’re looking a little bit different today.

Enrique Alvarez (04:51):

Well, I don’t know if it would’ve actually thank you for that, or, uh, be a little mad at you for comparing me, but Hey, just Greg white. And I know that that you miss him so much. So anyway, we same, uh,

Scott Luton (05:06):

I care basket. Hey, no kidding. I’ll tell you, uh, Greg’s had a full plate here lately. A tequila sunrise has really been taking off as well, but let’s with no further do I want to bring in Patrick Nelson, founder of loyalty point leadership, also a veteran of the U S army, a combat veteran with 39 months of combat deployment to both Afghanistan and Iraq. Hey Patrick. Good afternoon. Hey

Enrique Alvarez (05:35):

Guys. Hey Patrick,

Scott Luton (05:37):

You know, uh, great to have you back, uh, really enjoyed. We spent, uh, 90 minutes or so, uh, in a couple of weeks back and published that episode, uh, last Saturday and we’ve gotten a slew of feedback and, you know, I, I personally, I mean, very selfishly, I enjoyed that conversation with you and, and just your manner of walking folks. Uh, you know, we left that thinking, man, if you think you’ve got life tough, less than what Patrick has, has fought through and as it continues to do today. So, so, uh, happened how you joined us here on today’s live stream.

Patrick Nelson (06:11):

It’s great to be here. And I really appreciated the opportunity Scott and the people that have reached out to me on LinkedIn. It’s been awesome. Uh, and looking forward to, uh, to meet some more people that are in the supply chain now, family

Scott Luton (06:26):

Outstanding. All right. So Enrique, where do we want to start the lab? Yeah,

Patrick Nelson (06:32):

Patrick welcome always. Oh, it’s a pleasure talking to you. We spend a couple hours. Well, I was like more like an hour talking the other day as well. And, uh, I certainly learned a lot from you and your life experience. So why did you say a little bit more about yourself and, uh, introduce yourself, uh, in short? Yeah, absolutely. Thank you, Enrique. Um, you know what, I’m, I’m what I like to call an accidental leader because did not look at me when I was growing up and say, man, that kid’s going to go to do some great things someday with his life. Um, I won’t go into too much detail as I did on the podcast, but I had a tough childhood. It certainly could have been a lot worse, but it taught me to be very independent at an early age. And, um, you know, as you talked about Scott, I served in the army.

Patrick Nelson (07:17):

I was in a community college three weeks in, I was already skipping classes. Um, I wasn’t really on a path to success two days after nine 11. I drop out of that community college and joined the army second best decision I’ve ever made next, asking my wife to marry me and, uh, served nearly seven years as a paratrooper spent a lot of time deployed. Um, and that’s really where I cultivated my leadership skills and behaviors. I Rose through the ranks and, uh, you know, it was leading soldiers on combat missions. And then I left the military and that came to the civilian world and met some new challenges. Um, you know, I thought I wanted to work in professional sports. I was working with the Minnesota Vikings at the time, my dream job, my hometown team. Um, even though those of you from Atlanta, I will, uh, January of 99, very vividly.

Patrick Nelson (08:12):

I, I probably cried. I was a young man at the time when the Falcons beat us and Tennessee championship game, but that’s neither here nor there, but I found out that I didn’t want to work in sports. That’s not what I wanted to do with the rest of my life and eventually found my way here, uh, to loyalty point leadership and just absolutely love what I do extremely passionate about leadership. Not only sharing my experiences with others, but being able to learn from them as well, because as we know, leadership is a journey. It’s not a destination. It’s not like you go to some sort of leadership training and you get blessed off now, your leader, good job. Go ahead. Uh, we’re always continuing to learn and grow and develop and get better at things.

Scott Luton (08:51):

Love that Patrick. Well, um, you know, and, and to our audience, we did, we have included that direct link to your full story that you’ve shared with us on veteran voices in the show notes. Y’all check that out. Um, so Enrique, before we move along to getting, you know, Patrick’s five tips for being a more effective leader. I know that there were a couple of things that we were wanted to ask him about. Right. Well,

Patrick Nelson (09:13):

Tell me more about your, um, if you don’t mind sharing a little bit about some of the things that you’ve done in your personal life. Uh, tell us a little bit more about you as a, as it relates to your family. And, uh, I know that you’re have a beautiful family. So go ahead, Patrick, share a little bit of that with the audience, if you don’t mind. Yeah, absolutely. I, I love talking about my family. So, you know, kind of, a lot of it goes back to that tough childhood I had, um, did not have a biological father around at the time. We all know the statistics around that growing up without a father figure. Um, so I always knew what I wanted and I knew what I was missing. And so as a father myself now, our, our dream is we’re going to build a big house and just fill it full of kids and fill it full of love.

Patrick Nelson (10:00):

And so we got three kids now we’re thinking between five to seven, we want to have, so we got a little more work to do. Um, but we just want to create a safe environment where, you know, kids can come play and they can bring their friends. And there’s always food and food on the shelf and in the fridge and, uh, safe things for them to do where you’re not worried about what they’re doing. And part of that dream for us is through adoption. We have two biological daughters Hazlen and Patty, and we just adopted our third daughter Haven. Who’s now six months old. And you know, that adoption process was a difficult journey and every adoption situation is always unique. And there’s always a lot of brokenness involved. We went through the failed match. We were matched with a birth mother who was pregnant.

Patrick Nelson (10:50):

Um, it turned out, she was basically scamming us in the agency. We lost out on our, you know, about 15,000 bucks. Wow. Wow. It’s tough for anybody, especially when I had just lost my job in February. And so we had to decide if we wanted to continue on the adoption journey. And thankfully we did, um, after a lot of prayerful consideration and Brianna brought home our beautiful daughter Haven, and she’s just, you know, with this pandemic and everything, she’s been the light of our life, uh, just a very bright spot for us. And we’re always excited just to, to share her story and bringing her home. And we look forward to adopting again, um, and hopefully doing an international one day as well, because we are very passionate about orphans and especially Africa. Um, my wife, when she was my girlfriend, she had went on a couple mission trips over to Uganda and Kenya and where she just fell in love with the continent of Africa, those countries specifically. And so we’ve done a lot of work with them, you know, bringing

Enrique Alvarez (11:54):

One of the young men who grew up in the orphanage over here for his first visit to the United States, sponsoring them through, you know, financial means and also through anything that we can provide to help them, because it is such a different life. But thankfully with this connected world we live in, we can make a difference pretty easily. So we’re, yeah.

Scott Luton (12:13):

I love that. All right. So now we want to talk about a container that was sent to Kenya, but really quick. I want to recognize a few folks from the audience. We have got JT Taylor, who is finally with this, great to have you here, JT, uh, via LinkedIn. Uh, of course, uh, David is where we can have a live stream. Got. So Dave and hope this finds you well and Nurofen, I’m going to share with you and Patrick, uh, you and [inaudible] have something in common. He says, he’s a, he’s got three kids now trying to make one every six months to keep blockchain going.

Enrique Alvarez (12:47):

I love it.

Scott Luton (12:49):

Um, and then finally a not says, hello, sir, have a good day. I want to know about the prospects of supply chain jobs in Canada. Not that’s a great question. And if we’ve got time for that, uh, Enrique we’ll, we’ll, we’ll try to weigh in on that. That’s a really important topic. We know, especially in, in tough times, like 20, 21, we’re all looking for opportunities. Okay. So Enrique, let’s talk about this container and then we’re going to dive into Patrick’s, uh, five hot tips.

Enrique Alvarez (13:16):

Yeah. So for some of the conversations we’ve had with Patrick in the past, he mentioned very casually this story about a container going to Kenny, I believe it was Patrick. And, uh, and I thought the story he of course told it very casually at the time, uh, that speaks to his, uh, humble spirits. But, uh, but for me it was a very impressive and really admirable. So if you don’t mind sharing, I think that, uh, and I promised them and I am going to do it now life, uh, I guess, uh, but if he, he took the leadership of actually getting whatever we need to put in that container, uh, we would be shipping within. So, um, so Patrick, I think the ball’s on your record, but first and foremost, tell us a bit more about that container story. Absolutely. And Ricky, well, first of all, the wheels are already in motion on that.

Enrique Alvarez (14:06):

Um, yeah. You know, after my wife’s trips over there in the communication that we maintain with several of her contacts, we learned that the difficulties, it is for some of those non-profit organizations to get containers. Um, it’s, it’s tough for them. And so through a, a group of people from her mission trip that she went on were able to contribute financially in, in fill that thing up with everything from school supplies, to playground equipment, uh, to basic necessities and send that over over there. And it was such, it was such an inspiring moment, you know, for those of us here in the States, it doesn’t seem like it’d be maybe that big of a deal, but when saw pictures of

Patrick Nelson (14:52):

How excited they were, when that rolled in to, you know, the orphanage there and they cracked it open, I mean, it was just, it, it brought tears to my eyes and how thankful they were for it. And so, yeah, we’re just excited to be able to continue to give back in excited. Again, the, the wheels are in motion. Um, I’ve talked to several people already, uh, w w we’re gonna, we’re going to put that container on a ship and send it over there with a lot of love and a lot of awesome stuff, uh, to help take care of them. Wow.

Scott Luton (15:19):

What a, um, uh, inspiring story. Uh, Patrick, I love your passion. Let me from serving your country and, and, um, sacrificing for your country, both you and your family, uh, to what you continue to do. Now. It really is a earmark to me of something that Lauren at Vestal shared with me really pointed out. It hit me like a ton of bricks that folks, veterans, uh, wants to take off the uniform and not just in our country, but across the world. Oftentimes they keep serving, they keep giving back and Patrick, you really inspire us there. So, um, let’s keep driving. I like we talked about, um, in the pre-show I love checklists, Amanda in particular loved checklists and I like checklists too. And what we’re talking about Patrick is really picking on, uh, some of your expertise around leadership, you know, and, and with the backdrop of this incredibly challenging year, like 20, 20, you’ve given us the top five things you would do to increase an optimized leadership, but really quick before you do, I got to share this from Shabaam cause you’ve got some more kindred spirits. He’s just 24, but he’s got the same dream as you five to seven kids and a house.

Patrick Nelson (16:27):

That’s awesome. That is awesome.

Scott Luton (16:32):

So leadership, leadership leadership, if, if 2020 is challenged, anything is challenged, really practical, meaningful, uh, results driven, love your team leadership. And Patrick, what are, give us a, your number one thing to think about when it comes to, uh, in enhancing and optimizing.

Patrick Nelson (16:50):

Yeah, for sure. So number one in even pandemic or not, oftentimes I’ll have people say like, what’s the one thing that I could focus on to be a better leader. The number one thing I tell them is being able to learn how to manage your reactions and using a more thought out response instead it’s, you know, it’s cognitive discipline being able to inhibit those instinctual condition or habitual reactions, right. And using that more learned response. And there’s a lot of neuroscience involved. Um, our brains are not as hardwired as we used to think. You can teach an old dog, new tricks, uh, science and prove it, right. We, we, we can create those new neural pathways, but really being able to just sort of take that pause because a lot of times it, especially in today’s society and people may not like this word, but people get triggered pretty easily.

Patrick Nelson (17:41):

Um, and there’s things that can push our buttons and usually we know what they are, but when it happens in the moment we get that amygdala hijack, and again, I’m a neuroscientist, I’ll just play one for today, but our amygdala gets hijacked. There’s things going on in our brain where it’s difficult for us to control that reaction. But the good news is there are things we can do. And one of the best pieces of advice that I ever got was from a former colleague of mine, who’s flying F sixteens and the air force. He said, do you know what? One of the first things they teach us in fighter pilot training is when an alarm goes off in the cockpit. I said, no idea. You’re probably with a bunch of buttons, eject project, you ejac, you’re calling me. He said, the very first thing they taught us to do was to wind the clock because you can’t break anything by winding the clock and it’s making your brain take that half second pause.

Patrick Nelson (18:33):

That’s going to help you override that instantaneous reaction, which couldn’t be a wrong one in, in a, in a fatal one. Right. And using that more thought out response that you have. And, and so just like, you know, stop, drop and roll. Uh, I’ve carried that wind the clock with me, and it’s worked wonders. And in my personal and professional life, kind of just making a brain take that little bit of a pause and it helps you use a more thought out response instead. And I always like to use the analogy for that, the elephant and the rider, uh, it’s from the book called the happiness hypothesis. The elephant represents our emotions are our reactions, right, right. A rider that little person on top, well, that’s your brain, that’s your logical thinking. And that’s your response at that little person on top has no idea what they’re doing, which way is the elephant going to go, whichever way it wants. Right? But that little person on top knows what they can doing when knows what they’re doing. They can keep that elephant on the same path where they want to go

Scott Luton (19:31):

Outstanding and great, powerful and effective visual. All right. So really quick to our audience first off, Hey, tell us what you think, uh, give us your top five or weigh in on what Patrick shares here. Um, uh, we’d love to hear your take because our audience always brings it. Um, Patrick, one of the things I’ve learned, uh, and not just, thankfully I learned it before the 2020, uh, challenging year, especially when everything’s remote, everything’s email or zoom, or, you know, you don’t have the opportunity to stop in an office oftentimes and, and have that, you know, check yourself moment, so to speak, right. So, but you still have to have the tough conversations. And what I’ve learned is, Hey, before you fire off that email in the moment where you it’s war and peace and you lay it all out, you know, uh, save it in your draft and sleep on it. Yeah.

Patrick Nelson (20:21):

Two minute delay, too many late, which is what I have on my, um, outlook emails. So you can do that now, Scott. So you don’t have to even think about it, the sending of the emails by a couple of minutes or as many as you might need. And I, uh, I can’t, yes. It’s a really, really good point. And you have no idea how many times that little delay has saved me from sending angry or just plain dumb emails. So

Scott Luton (20:45):

You’re, you’re telling me in Reiki that angry grams you’ve sent me, it’s been African

Patrick Nelson (20:50):

The extra five minutes after the whole five minutes of things. When you first drafting of those emails,

Scott Luton (21:01):

Quick lyric, a fellow veteran, Larry Klein is with us here today. Uh, Larry, we’re doing well, great to have you here. And we’re talking leadership and we’re getting, uh, five tips from a, been there, done that expert on leadership, uh, Patrick Nelson. So we’d love to have you weigh in. All right. So Patrick, that was number one, kind of check those emotions at the door, so to speak what’s number two,

Patrick Nelson (21:22):

Uh, number two, growth mindset, right? Being able to view challenges as opportunities. We look at 2020 in the disruption that has had in our personal and our professionalized and being able to take that mindset and, you know, view this as an opportunity where you might have to step outside of your comfort zone and do something a little bit different, but you’re going to learn a hell of a lot. Again, I go back to February, I lost my job. And an hour later I started loyalty point leadership with, um, not a lot of idea of really what I was doing. Um, but I knew I had to look at that challenge as an opportunity. You know, people with that fixed mindset, you kind of get in that safety zone of like, this is what I know how to do, and I’m not going to try anything else because I might fail.

Patrick Nelson (22:06):

But think about the times where you’ve really learned or grown the most in your life is through those failures and through those experiences. Um, and I mean, that’s really what I attribute a lot of my leadership to is to all the failures that I’ve had in life. Um, so exercising that growth mindset, and it can start with some very, very small things and, you know, it may not work for everybody. But one of the things that shifted with me was just that narrative that I tell myself that internal dialogue and for a lot of people, it’s, it’s semantics. But instead of you saying, Oh man, I have to go to work today. You know, I get to go to work today. Just changing that verbiage for me. Again, it may not work for everybody. Um, but changing the verbiage for me really started to shift my mindset. You know, I always have a lot of people tell me, Oh, you’re such a positive person. And all that, like this, it took a shift in, it takes time to, it’s not going to happen. The snap of the fingers you’re going to fail. Um, you might lose your cool sometimes with some of your reactions, but you just have to keep trying and keep putting forth that effort.

Scott Luton (23:09):

I love. Okay. So I want to share a little quick follow up here. So going back to, uh, uh, in re case two minute, uh, email rule there, Dave David says, Hey, that was well thought out. Yeah.

Patrick Nelson (23:22):

Scott deserved it,

Scott Luton (23:27):

Say hello to Sydney who is tuned in via LinkedIn. Great to have you here said D um, all, so Emory K w w respond to, uh, item number two, that Patrick just share what comes to mind.

Patrick Nelson (23:39):

Well, I think, I think he’s absolutely right about that. And I fear like, uh, technology and social media and the way things are going in

Enrique Alvarez (23:46):

The world sometimes prevent people from making mistakes. Because now we think that making mistakes is used, it’s dumb, or it’s, it’s the sign of not being qualified for a job or, and I think that’s wrong. And that’s one of the things that I’m trying to at least, uh, instill in my kids, right? I mean, if you don’t make mistakes, you’re never going to learn. So if you’re not trying hard enough, it means that you are not learning. If you’re not failing, it means that you’re probably not going to achieve something beyond the comfort zone, the comfort zone and what you initially imagined or thought possible. So, no, I, I couldn’t agree within more. Plus I have made all the mistakes in the book already. So I’m with you on that. All right.

Scott Luton (24:30):

Excellent stuff. Gary, Gary Smith wanted to comment on your first one that you shared or do a follow-up on the first comment you shared, uh, top of the list there, Patrick, he says, communication tip, never email. When you can call, never call. If you can meet face to face. Although of course this can be tough in the current

Enrique Alvarez (24:48):

Great advice. All right. So big fan

Scott Luton (24:51):

Failure, um, because you learn, you’ve got to it, you know, um, no one succeeds all the time. I mean, Jackie Robinson this morning and hall of Famer, one of the best baseball players that major league has ever seen, and the old proverb, you know, hall of Famers, you know, hit three times get hit three times out of 10. Right? So, but learning the key, I think the folks that really go on to accomplish big things are the folks that are humble enough to really study those losses and figure out what went well and own, you know, own that failure. And, um, so Patrick, so let’s keep trucking. What is number three own own the, uh, the top five list?

Enrique Alvarez (25:30):

Yeah, absolutely. And it’s directly, you know, related to those failures. It’s accountability is something that I first noticed when I transitioned from soldier to civilian and that I’ve seen a lot in this civilian world. There’s, there’s just a lack of personal accountability and I’ve seen it, how it can impact organizations and cultures. Now, I like to help organizations really shift that mindset of accountability from the deficit base, where it’s, you know, somebody does something wrong and we’re going to point the finger at them because that’s their fault. And we’re going to blame them and make sure that they get in trouble has the posts to what’s known as for looking at accountability where our number one goal is to find out how did it happen? How can we prevent it from happening again, we’re not having that culture of fear of people that are so scared in a risk adverse when it comes, because they don’t want to make mistakes. Now, again, I’m not talking about, um, you know, like workplace safety, because we, we do want to be risk averse there, but making mistakes where it’s not going to cost somebody their fingers or toes or, or, or their lives. A lot of times people get in, again, going back to that fixed mindset, they become risk adverse. And, and there’s just a lack of accountability. And so shifting

Patrick Nelson (26:44):

It and looking at, um, I mean, Facebook kind of pioneered it in their early days, fail fast, right? We want you to fail and we want you to fail fast and we’re going to learn from it. And I mean, it’s going to help us grow exponentially. What we learned that in the key from that, as well as being able to share what you learned, that just, you know, keeping that knowledge inside, but being able to share it with others. And again, that’s really kind of what I do with my work. It’s me really sharing my failures with others. And so I always encourage people, please, please open up, be vulnerable. Um, it certainly requires a culture of trust and accountability to be able to do that. Uh, but when you do it, that’s when great things happen. And that’s really where high performing teams exist.

Scott Luton (27:26):

Love it. And being comfortable with some of your weaknesses, you know, you can’t be great at everything and you’re going to have gaps and blind spots. And, and you’ve got to, you gotta know though, you gotta find those out based on feedback, right.

Patrick Nelson (27:43):

Um, everybody’s got weaknesses, challenges and limitations. I don’t care who you are. We all have it. Yeah.

Scott Luton (27:48):

Great point there. Um, all right. I want to go, I want to share a couple of things here. So Larry Klein says my new motto has been, I don’t know how I’m going to win. I just know I’m not going to lose. That has caused me to not have a comfort zone. Excellent. Uh, Gary Smith says growth mindset is a key. Carol Dweck Dweck maybe wrote a great book on this.

Patrick Nelson (28:13):

Carol. She’s a professor at a Stanford, and that’s really where a lot of my knowledge on growth mindset comes from her research. So yeah. Yeah.

Scott Luton (28:20):

I’m always not in the know Patrick Harry, goodness gracious. Uh, and then Barbara Wade is here from, uh, Maryland, Barbara. Great to have you with us via LinkedIn. Um, all right. So that was C uh, basic math is above my pay grade. I think that was number three, right?

Patrick Nelson (28:37):

Patrick. Well, math in public is hard, so I’m not going to hold it against you, but yes, I believe that

Scott Luton (28:43):

Man, always on top Patrick. All right. So let’s move on to number four and to our audience. Again, if you’re tuned in just late here, we’re talking about the top five tips for improving your leadership with combat veteran and an entrepreneur and expert Patrick Nelson. All right. So Patrick,

Patrick Nelson (28:59):

Yeah, it it’s, it’s empathy. Um, and it’s sort of been a buzzword in the, uh, emotional intelligence and leadership development world or the last couple of years. And a lot of people kind of think it’s the same as 70, but it’s not right. It’s completely different. Empathy is really being able to put yourself in somebody else’s shoes and see things from their perspective. And that’s really what a good leader does because leadership is about people. You manage things, it might be data processes, equipment, inventory schedule, but you lead people. Uh, and it’s important to have that empathy because in this polarized society we live in, it doesn’t seem like there’s a lot of room in the middle for people to have conversations it’s even going to be for this or against that. And I’m not even just talking about politics,

Enrique Alvarez (29:42):

But look at how people’s thoughts on COVID and even the response, uh, how it’s divided us. And I think we get caught up in so four to five in our own stance on things and myself included that we tend to overlook the actual people side. And, you know, empathy is really, again, being able to put yourself in their shoes, understand their experiences, how it’s informed them and have conversations. And again, if you can do that, you’re doing pretty good because that’s really difficult in today’s society. But again, we’re only one person, but the smallest asset service, just having conversations with people and sometimes have the biggest impact.

Scott Luton (30:24):

Mm well, put there, well put, uh, and Reiki, I want you follow up on the topic of empathy. What what’s, what’s important to you?

Enrique Alvarez (30:32):

Yeah, I think as Patrick was saying, right. And, uh, and he is, uh, by far the expert on this, but it’s just really something that, uh, I believe this morning, Scott and that very interesting interview that we had with David and Metta Robinson Metta said, it’s just do beyond your own. It’s kind of like the way she put it. And I had to flip through my notebook to get the exact quote, but that’s what she said. Right. Just to be on your own. And I think that’s a little bit of, uh, uh, what empathy is to me. Right. Just don’t always be so selfish, right? Yeah.

Scott Luton (31:03):

Yeah. Well put, uh, and, and met, uh, uh, both Metta and David are, were a one-two punch, uh, by the way, Metta is, uh, David’s daughter. And to see them in, in their business ventures and not just what they’re doing, kind of in their gift forward programming, but what they’re doing with sweet, um, let’s see here

Enrique Alvarez (31:27):

Unity, right?

Scott Luton (31:28):

Unity farms, coffee. Uh, y’all gotta check that out. If, if Amanda, if you’re still there, I love that for you to drop that to notes. But again, it’s very, forward-looking, they’re bringing all the, all the, uh, from the farm farmers to all of the, the workforce, all the different shareholders, um, and, and bring them to the table. So there’s something in it for all of them building a sense of community and that’s, Hey, we, we can’t get enough of that here in 2020 moving into 2021. Um, I want to share a couple of things your day. Uh, David’s got to go in here, Patrick Enrique, not, it’s not just about business growth, but also personal growth. Right. Would you agree, disagree or, um, because, you know, I think I’ve been guilty. Uh, some of the teams I have led, I have gotten, gotten maybe way too deep on the results from the work from the office, from the role, and, and at times, Hey, let’s stop and just have a conversation about life or about, you know, about your daughter or son that might be graduating from high school or, or whatever it is, or maybe if you’re pursuing an advanced degree or a certification, or how are you doing on your 10 breeding 10 books in a given year?

Scott Luton (32:40):

I think it probably can happen to a bunch of us, but, um, it’s really important to, to check in on those personal growth moments. Right.

Enrique Alvarez (32:48):

I go ahead, Patrick. I think it absolutely is because again, leadership comes down to people. Everybody knows that leadership is important. We know what good leadership looks like. Everybody can describe exactly what this is, what I want out of a leader. Um, but we fall short again because we’re, people are flawed as human beings, but when we’re able to have conversations together, when we’re able to focus on, um, again, and I like to think not only are our deficits, that the things that we can get better at, but even our strengths, being able to leverage our strengths. Um, and everybody is so unique. Um, for, for example, myself, I used to have a very strong personality where I was in a small chip, get, get to know you kind of guide, bear results oriented, you know, drive, drive, drive. And a lot of that came from my time in experiences in the military. Um, but you can shift that where you can, Hey, you know what, take a pause, make it about the people more than the process, more than the results. And I think you’re going to see some fantastic things when you’re, when you’re able to do that.

Scott Luton (33:57):

That’s well put, well, put Patrick, and by the way, we did get a question here. Let’s see here from Barbara, uh, glad to join. Will we get the speakers, contact info and Barbara, uh, we’ve got, uh, Patrick’s LinkedIn profile, direct link in the show notes, and I’m sure we’ll, we’ll capture exactly how to get in touch with Patrick as we wind down this interview here momentarily. It’s a great question. Um, Enrique, any, uh, as we talk about personal growth, a couple of comments for you?

Enrique Alvarez (34:24):

No, I think, uh, I mean, we both mentioned, um, that, uh, that it is important, uh, and I, I would actually even challenge the audience and you guys do to think that it’s just the only thing that matters really. I mean, we’re all, we’re just, we’re just people, right? I mean, uh, I think that, uh, if we really understand how the people we work with and the people we do business with, or just even our own families, if we really understand and could understand a bit more about what they’re thinking or feeling and be more emphatic, I think a lot of the issues that we have in the world will really just disappear, right?

Scott Luton (34:58):

Point great point. And along these lines of personal growth, David adds not just your personal growth, but the teams, a team that you, I imagine you lead or you serve with, or, or maybe, you know, moving up, uh, he might report to great point. Yeah.

Enrique Alvarez (35:13):

I want to think, I want to add Scott is when I think of leadership, I’m very behavior focused on leadership. It’s not about the position or title. It’s not as if we punch in for work, we put on our leadership hat. Now you need to start being good communicators and listened and empathetic. And then we punch out for the day I’m done. I don’t need to be empathetic anymore. Um, I think it’s something that we carry with us and that, through that personal growth, 27, whether we’re

Patrick Nelson (35:38):

We’re at work or we’re leading our family or leading in our communities,

Scott Luton (35:41):

Great point, great point. Uh, and Gary, just like Patrick, he lays out Carol’s book. The name of the book. He also says empathy is key. Having had tough times can make you empathize with others, especially when you are other directed, um, interesting point there, Gary. Good point there. Um, all right. So now we’re moving into the home stretch and finishing up with number five on this top five lists of how to optimize your leadership, Patrick.

Patrick Nelson (36:09):

Yeah. And again, when I think leadership, there’s a lot of models out there, a lot of tools and, uh, and I can lead a workshop and I can fit all my examples into this nice little box, but in the real world, it doesn’t always happen like that. I think people, some people tend to make leadership a little more complicated than it needs to be, but again, if we just focus on the people and one of the things that it comes back to me, when I think about how I got to where I’m at now, from the challenges that I’ve had is surrounding yourself with the right people. And what I mean by that, it’s not the people that are going to be the yes men or yes, women in your life. I’m going to tell you that everything’s great. It’s going to be the people that tell you what you need to hear right now, what you want to hear.

Patrick Nelson (36:55):

And I can think back to, um, after I had been out of the military for several years, my little brother had joined like literally right after I joined. And so I was a paratrooper. I thought I was pretty cool. Right? Well, he had to one me and he became an army ranger and years, uh, in ranger battalions, and went to Afghanistan like six or seven times. So, um, pretty cool dude got to do some pretty cool things. And before he got out, um, he had a business idea and he was so pumped about it. He put a lot of work into this PowerPoint, this business plan he put together and he was, he sent it to me. He was so excited. He said, let me know your thoughts on this. I put a lot of time and work into this, blah, blah, blah. And he sends it to me and I called him up.

Patrick Nelson (37:37):

I said, that sucked, that worked brothers. And we can talk like that. I definitely don’t advise, uh, or teach that type of communication. And at first he was a little bit disappointed, uh, in my response to him, but then he kind of, he understood that I wasn’t just going to blow, smoke up his button and tell him, Oh my gosh, this is the best thing I’ve ever seen. I was so proud of you that I had his best interest in mind. And obviously the conversation continued past this Sox obviously, um, where he understood that I had his best interest in mind and I wanted to see him succeed. Uh, so again, being able to surround yourself with those types of people and people who are going to push you and people that are pushing you to what I call the, the, um, sheet moments in your life, those moments and experiences where you’re, you’re outside your comfort zone, and you’re going to learn the most and real quickly. Um, one of those was after I got wounded in the army in Afghanistan, uh, when I got back out there with my soldiers, my Lieutenant, uh, John post. So I think I spoke a little bit about in our

Enrique Alvarez (38:36):

Previous podcast interview, he pushed me to start taking college classes while in Afghanistan, while living in a mud hut near the Pakistani border. And it’s not something that initially I was like, Oh yeah, let me do that because I don’t have enough going on. But that was a moment outside my comfort zone, where I knew that he cared about me. He wanted to see me succeed. He was going to push me a little bit, and that experience has set me up for success for my life. And so I’m very thankful for that. Wow.

Scott Luton (39:05):

Um, and the, and there’s a lot, there’s a ton more to that story and some of the challenges early, both, uh, in the formative years and, and during his time deployed. So check out Patrick, Nelson’s a full interview with us and, and we’re going to bring him and his significant other, your, your wife’s name. Patrick is

Enrique Alvarez (39:21):

Shannon. And so I remembered as Shanna banana. Cause when I first met her and I pronounced it every way, but Shanna is. So she finally just told me to sync banana and so channel and I’ve pronounced Shayna, Shawna, Shannon, everything, everything. But Shannon, I love that.

Scott Luton (39:36):

I love, uh, you know, our last name. It’s always been Latin pronounced in school, although it’s pronounced Luton and always gave the teacher a pass. But I love folks that make it really easy and just embrace it. It’s tough to pronounce our friend, Tony Sharada leads the reverse logistics association and I’m, I’m, I’m wanting to get my kids’ names wrong all the time. And he told me, he’s like, Scott, you remember that song? My Sharona, you know, back in the eighties, everybody loved just like that. My Sharona. So Tony wrote it and that it works just like a charm. Right,

Enrique Alvarez (40:09):

Patrick. Um, all right. So we are going

Scott Luton (40:12):

To make sure, well, well and Reiki, I know we want to talk about this growth forward mindset as we start to wind down, but let’s, let’s pose, let’s get, uh, Patrick, uh, to, uh, chime in on that question to him and Kay.

Enrique Alvarez (40:27):

Well, thank you very much for clarifying that, Scott. No. Um, so Patrick, I mean, you’ve given us like very, very practical tools, uh, that, uh, that of course need required practice and experience and, and, and I’m sure it takes time to master each and every one of them, but, um, how do you and your personal, how do you, after you have given us all this information and this really good advice, how does that kind of boil down into your personal life? How, how do you boil this into your giving forward mindset and, and the gathering things to the, for the container in Kenya or adopting, uh, your daughter? Um, I think it’s, it’s honestly pretty simple for me. Um, I didn’t get here where I’m at on my own, and, uh, I want to be able to give back and help those people that might need a little bit of a hand up.

Enrique Alvarez (41:22):

Um, thankfully I had people in my life despite those challenges that helped me with that help lead me, you know, nobody succeeds on their own. You can always point to at least one other person helped you along the way. And there’s probably about 30, 40 different people I can point to for my success. And so, yeah, so it’s, it’s remembering where I came from, how I got here and my responsibility that I see, like to make the world a better place. Even if it’s just one person, you know, Marianne Williamson said our greatest fear is not that we’re inadequate. It’s that we’re powerful beyond our belief. And again, the impact that we can have on, on other people is absolutely tremendous. And it doesn’t matter where you work, what your position is, what your title rooms, uh, we can all have those impact, but you’ll never know unless you, if you don’t try it yourself out there

Scott Luton (42:11):

Love that Patrick man. Um, all right. Want to share a couple of comments here from the audience? Uh, Gary, uh, gear is on fire today, Gary and Patrick talking about your one, two combos. Uh, he says number five, the number five that Patrick shared means that you need to surround yourself with people with other worldviews other than your own. And that will push back on ideas. That’s, that’s, uh, I love that Patrick, your takeaway.

Enrique Alvarez (42:35):

Yeah, absolutely. Diversity of thought is one of the most powerful things out there that I think helped businesses really succeed. Um, and thankfully I was surrounded by that in the military, which is fantastic, but a lot of times in organizations that I’ve seen in my experiences is people kind of shy away from that because they’re afraid of conflict and they think conflict is just this terrible thing, but there’s such thing as healthy disagreement, and we need that. Otherwise we’re coming up with the same lame ideas all the time, and nothing’s really changing.

Scott Luton (43:04):

Yeah. We’ll put in. Okay. And any thoughts there?

Enrique Alvarez (43:09):

Well, um, yes, I, I, there’s really not a lot to add to what Patrick has said. And, and to Gary who has been on fire, uh, throughout this, uh, live stream. So no, it’s, it’s really just keep open and be honest and, and, and really, really try to, uh, to have, uh, either a coach or a friend or family member or a mentor even, or a teacher. I mean, there’s always like someone in your life that will probably try to help you out as, uh, as Larry just pointed out on one of the comments, uh, and I’ll let you Scott handle that cause you’d do a better job, but, but, uh, you never know when the help or support is going to come from. Right. So just be open to people helping out

Scott Luton (43:50):

Well said. And yeah, Larry says a family friend I had never met, helped me out when I was down. You know, I think a great point, Larry and Enrique. Um, it was little things and, and Patrick, I can’t remember if you said it or if one of our other folks we recently spoke with, but those little moments of kindness and patience and tolerance or GRA or gratitude or, or, uh, give back, those can be the, can make some of the biggest ripples and have some of the biggest ripple effects. And, and, and oftentimes you’ll never know if you’re the one initiating it, but just to stop, even if it’s, you know, uh, the, the books, you know, for books for Africa, Enrique, as you y’all send books, African, and the, the ability that, that the impact that has to teach folks how to fish rather than, than just the fish themselves.

Scott Luton (44:40):

So powerful, um, you know, finding moments here, here lately, what we’ve one of the things we’ve seen in re K and Patrick from our church is in this era of technology where, you know, a lot of schools are shut down and, and no matter what your walk of life is, you’ve, you’ve had to embrace this. Um, you know, you got to teach your kids right. Homeschooling, and it really in my mind, and, and, and with some of the work our church is doing is it’s raised this gap. It’s been around for awhile, but it hasn’t gotten enough attention. That’s access to technology. You know, it’s a terrible thing to think about as I see my three kids at home and, and, and need computers to connect with their teachers and keep up with their school. Well, I mean, there’s some parts of the world that don’t even have a consistent internet connection to take advantage of that were pandemic or no pandemic. And I’m hoping that, uh, as an industry, uh, as a global business industry, that we can take care of and bridge those gaps so that, you know, kids can be kids and it’s so important for that to happen. So, um, all right. So Patrick, let’s make sure that folks know as Barbara and others, you know, uh, are already clamoring for, because it is always learned a lot sitting down with you. How can folks connect with Patrick Nelson?

Patrick Nelson (45:56):

Yeah, absolutely. So my website is loyalty point and, uh, you can find information about me there. Uh, you can connect with me on LinkedIn, just Patrick Nelson, loyalty point leadership. You look that up. Um, yeah, for email, I would love to connect with anybody that wants to discuss leadership or, um, talk smack about the Minnesota Vikings. I’m totally. Um, so yeah, I just, I, I love connecting and being able to learn from others and, uh, you know, I’m just going to keep at it with this, uh, loyalty point leadership. Again, I’m not an entrepreneur at heart as much as you know, I really say I’m not, uh, all I know is I have to keep doing something. And so, uh, every day that’s where I’m going to keep doing, trying to influence and inspire.

Scott Luton (46:46):

Awesome. Awesome. I think it’s about to go gangbusters. I love your approach here, Patrick, you can, you’ve got so much to offer and looking forward to bringing you back on, let’s share a couple of comments on, uh, Enrique. Like we talked about pre-show unlike typical live stream fashion. We’re not swooshing Patrick anywhere. He’s here with us until the end.

Patrick Nelson (47:05):

He likes the guy. Uh, let’s see.

Scott Luton (47:08):

He also says he’s got different views. Are I had different views being surrounded by Marines after retiring from the army this week is interesting. Go army beat Navy, right? Yeah.

Patrick Nelson (47:19):

Oh, absolutely. This is our big week. And what I love more than, I mean, the game itself is awesome. And having the midshipmen and the, and the cadets, um, I don’t know what they’re doing with COVID actually with it, but the pranks they do leading up to it is always the best as well. Um, and so I found a few of those on the internet, you know, painting or decorating the statue or whatever they’re doing each other. I think it’s a great tradition.

Scott Luton (47:43):

I think it is being held. The game is back at West point for the first time, since I think 1947 different times different times, but we’re going to get through it. Uh, T squared. Great to have you with us T squared, he’s always holds down the YouTube Fort on our live streams says the forms in which it comes, meaning the Goodwill and help and assistance can, can surprise in surprising ways. Absolutely said. And Sandy Lake is with us. Sandy Lake is doing a lot of great things, expanding, uh, logistics and supply chain, and really industry here across the state of Georgia appreciate her leadership. She got a son, uh, that I think still currently serves in the army. So I’m with you Sandy go army beat Navy, at least for this week. All right, man, Enrique, Patrick, we covered so much ground and about 45 minutes and, and Patrick, we appreciate your time.

Scott Luton (48:35):

We’re not going to hold you too far or too much longer. We do want to make sure we’ve got a big live stream tomorrow as well. And it’s this topic that’s getting so much attention, digital transformation. How many times have you heard that? Every day and Ricky and Patrick, right? Right. Um, or we’re kicking off this new series, digital transformers with our dear friend, Kevin L. Jackson, who is going to kill me after I said, army go army beat Navy, because Kevin is a retired Naval aviator amongst other things. And he is a digital transformation guru. So we’ve got Thomas Carter with total network services and Sandra Natallee with at T and T business joining us at 12 noon tomorrow, talking about digital transformation on that new series. So join us across any of those five social platforms. And I think all Instagram is coming around, who knows our live streams may be there, live in the weeks ahead. All right. So I’m going to, let’s end on this note, uh, Enrique and Patrick. And we’ll give you a second to think about it. Not two minutes in Reiki, but I’ll give you a second. If you’ve got to challenge the community here and whoever stumbles across the recording of this interview with one challenge, throw the gauntlet down. What would that challenge be? And Patrick, you’re always ready and always own some, a start with you. So Patrick, what’s that one challenge.

Patrick Nelson (49:57):

Yeah. Pick up the phone and call that person that has made a difference in your life. They, they exist. They’re out there. There’s a great Ted talk by a guy named drew Dudley talks. It’s like five minutes. Look it up. It’s called lollipop moments. Find that person that has influenced your life in a, in a disproportionate way. And they don’t know about it and let them know that they’ve done that.

Scott Luton (50:22):

Love that. Okay. Did

Patrick Nelson (50:24):

You give Patrick a heads-up on this? He kind of came up a very good one

Scott Luton (50:28):

Too quickly. I am wondering here. All right. So Enrique, if you hadn’t had a challenge, if I had to challenge folks and I’ll do it myself as a self challenge for the week, I think it’s just, uh, going along the growth mindset, uh, recommendation did Patrick said, just try something new. I mean, be brave. And I read this a quote somewhere, be brave, being bad at something new. Right. And, and I, and I love that quote. And so if there’s one challenge for everyone out there, just try something different this week or this weekend. Even, even if it means just eating sushi for the first time, or just doing anything, just something new, you must know my wife, cause I’ve never had sushi. So that’s yours, Patrick. This weekend. We need a picture of you eating sushi. That’s great advice though. Very well. Uh, folks, Enrique, Patrick.

Scott Luton (51:21):

Excellent. Uh, the whole conversation really enjoyed it. I’ve got plenty of notes. I love the, how the gauntlet y’all thrown down. The gauntlet I’m gonna throw down is the same one that we always do. And, and Enrique, I like how you put it because you know, it’s not us on high challenging everyone else. We challenge ourselves right. To be good, right. Give forward and be the change that’s needed to see. I was channeling old Greg white here with fingers. I never do that. But you know, kidding aside, it’s so important now, perhaps more than ever before, in a sense of global community, what you can do for others and, and, you know, be, uh, uh, you know, slow to anger as Patrick’s talking to and get, you know, get a handle on those emotions and, and, and really practice empathy in a very meaningful way, right. That the power of, uh, mutual, positive assumptions, right? Everyone’s not out to get ya, you know, and really embracing that and acting, acting with that in mind. But Hey, be like Patrick, be like, goodness nodes be like, uh, uh, David and Metta Robinson. And the huge impacts that all three of these individuals were making. And on that note, we’ll see you next time here on supply chain. Now, thanks everybody for joining us really enjoyed today’s session. Have a great week.

Would you rather watch the show in action?  Watch as Scott and Enrique welcome Patrick Nelson to Supply Chain Now through our YouTube channel.

Patrick Nelson has gained both local and national accolades for his military service, academic career, and work as a professional speaker and trainer including being named the inaugural NFL-Tillman Military Scholar. He is an experienced leader that spent nearly seven years in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper and completed three combat deployments leading soldiers. His military awards include the Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart Medal.

Patrick is an engaging facilitator that has led leadership development programs for a variety of clients, from Fortune 500 clients to small businesses and across a variety of industries. Off the proverbial leadership field, he serves his community by actively volunteering with Tee It Up for the Troops, a non-profit organization that raises money for wounded veterans.

Patrick studied at Minnesota State University and received a Bachelor’s Degree graduating Magna Cum Laude. He also has a Master’s Degree in Sport Management from Minnesota State and a Masters in Organization Development from Pepperdine University.

Enrique Alvarez 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 a 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 also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people and spending time with his wife and two kids Emma and Enrique. Learn more about Vector Global Logistics here:

Scott W. Luton is the founder & CEO of Supply Chain Now, the voice of supply chain. Supply Chain Now digital media brings together thought-leaders, influencers and practitioners to spotlight the people, technology, best practices, critical issues, and new opportunities impacting global supply chain performance today and tomorrow. Our leaders are frequently sourced to provide insights into supply chain news, technology, disruption and innovation, and rank in the top 25 on multiple industry thought-leadership lists. Supply Chain Now digital media content includes podcasts, livestreaming, vlogs, virtual events, and articles that have accumulated millions of views, plays and reads since 2017 and continue to reach a growing global audience.

Scott has worked extensively in the end-to-end Supply Chain industry for more than 15 years, appearing in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He’s also been named a top industry influencer by groups such as Thinkers360, ISCEA and others.

Having served as President of APICS Atlanta from 2009 to 2011, Scott has also served on a variety of boards and has led a number of initiatives to support the local business community & global industry. Scott is also a United States Air Force Veteran and has led a variety of efforts to give back to his fellow Veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.


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