Logistics with Purpose
Episode 93

One third of my job is people. One third is execution because you have to be grounded; you have to fly high and fly low. And one third innovation and transformation.

-Caroline Troit, SVP Operations Luxe, L'Oreal

Episode Summary

Operations and supply chain management are a science that require a lot of experience and technical know-how to lead – especially on a global scale. But people management is a science too, one that is often more challenging than the others. Caroline Troit leads Operations for the Luxe division of L’Oréal North America. She has end-to-end operational responsibilities for a portfolio of American brands and oversees the supply chain for all of L’Oréal’s luxury brands in the US and Canada, including Lancôme, Armani, YSL, and several fragrance brands. In this special collaborative episode between Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now, Caroline joins hosts Kristi Porter and Amanda Luton to talk about her love for working with people and how she has applied a background in engineering in the largest cosmetics company in the world.

 

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:02):

Welcome to Logistics with Purpose presented by Vector Global Logistics. In partnership with Supply Chain. Now we spotlight and celebrate organizations who are dedicated to creating a positive impact. Join us for this behind the scenes glimpse of the origin stories change, making progress, and future plans of organizations who are actively making a difference. Our goal isn’t just to entertain you, but to inspire you to go out and change the world. And now here’s today’s episode of Logistics with Purpose.

Kristi Porter (00:35):

Thanks so much for joining us for another episode of Logistics With Purpose. I am Kristi Porter of Vector Global Logistics, and I’m so excited because I have a new co-host for the first time. Also, a co-host outside of Vector, also a co-host that you may know her husband, the voice of supply chain now, Scott Luton. But I wanted to get Amanda in on the action. So, Amanda Luton, welcome to Logistics With Purpose Today. I’m so excited to be co-hosting with you.

Amanda Luton (01:05):

I’m so excited too, Christie. I was really honored and excited to be given the opportunity to co-host today, so I’m super excited. Yes.

Kristi Porter (01:13):

Well, we are gonna have a great conversation, um, behind the scenes. We’ve been talking, there’s a lot of interesting and exciting things going on, and I know part of not just the invitation, which I know was probably an honor to be nominated and to invite you onto the podcast, but when you heard who our guest was, you were also pretty excited to, to join in.

Amanda Luton (01:34):

Absolutely. Uh, this is gonna be a great episode. I’m really excited about it.

Kristi Porter (01:37):

Yes. So today we have with us Caroline Troit, senior Vice President of Operations at L’Oreal Luxe America. So Caroline, welcome to the show.

Caroline Troit (01:49):

Thank you. I’m very, uh, honored to be here and, uh, well done for getting my pronunciation. My name runs right, <laugh>. Thank

Kristi Porter (01:56):

You. You noticed a big pause I took before I said it to make sure I <laugh> I got it right. It’s pulling out, um, the very little French accents I know. And have picked up from movies. Thank you. That’s a great, a great compliment to me. So, before we get into L’Oreal, a lot to talk about their global name, household brand, but first we wanna hear a little bit more about you. So tell us a little bit about where you grew up in your childhood. I think people are gonna know from your accent. It was not the south of the United States. So tell us where you came from. <laugh>.

Caroline Troit (02:28):

Yes, very, uh, a shame for my accent because I have not been like more than 15 years in English speaking country. So <crosstalk> that. But yes, I did grow up in France, in Normandy, in a town called, uh, <inaudible> to be a very, uh, precise. And my parents built their house out of a cider barn in my grandparents’ backyard. And we would go there every, every weekend. And I think about it as we live like a really sustainable life, actually. We would grow our own vegetables, our fruits, we would make our own cider, which I got to drink a little bit when I was young, <laugh>. And we would compost. We had this big hole in the, in the forest actually, where we would compost, which we didn’t call compost. I didn’t even know what compost was until a few years ago. Uh, but that was compost.

Caroline Troit (03:21):

We would not drink, uh, in plastic bottle at all. Um, so it was a lot about nature and sustainability in, in a way, but we didn’t talk sustainability. Um, it was very lonely for me too. Uh, I have to say, there was no friend around. So I’d spent a lot of my time on these weekends reading books and uh, writing my journal and playing the piano, though I was not good at all at it. And my brother would be like, stop playing that same music. I can’t stand it anymore. And, you know, that made me, um, that shaped me to be a, a little bit of an introvert. Uhhuh <affirmative>. And at the time my dad was running my, uh, grandfather’s company. He was a roof material, uh, trading company. So kind of logistics in a way. Yes. And it’s a company founded after World War II when my hometown, like many towns in Normandy were destroyed.

Caroline Troit (04:17):

Yeah. And it was very successful, but it was super hard too. And I, I remember that lately my dad would work incredibly hard. He would come back at night very late. I remember he would have calls at night with some lawyers sometime and they would talk about like sweet people. They were not paying him. And I was young, I would be in my bed like praying for him. So he worked really hard. He works weekends, he didn’t take vacation. And I think I got a lot of my work ethic from, from my dad. And, you know, I’m very grateful that I worked for a company like L’Oreal with all those benefits. I really don’t take any of that for granted. You know, that’s a little bit my char

Kristi Porter (04:58):

The sustainability piece. I’m curious, was that like a conscious decision or something? They just were like, this is what we have available, this is what we need to make use of. How did that come into play?

Caroline Troit (05:09):

Well, that’s the thing that I find interesting that now we talk sustainability. But at the time they were just leaving sustainably. Right. Without thinking about it. Yeah. It was not intentional at all. That was just how people would live in France. I think the more sustainable way, if you think about it.

Kristi Porter (05:25):

That’s fascinating.

Amanda Luton (05:27):

Wow. I love getting to know our guests a little bit before we dive into the business side of the conversation. So Caroline, looking back, I know you kind of touched a bit on it, but maybe a little bit more details. Is there a story or an anecdote from your early years that really shaped who you are? It sounds like sustainability was a, a major part of your upbringing, but something that inspired kind of what you do now that you could share with the audience.

Caroline Troit (05:51):

Yeah. So maybe something completely different than sustainability. Actually, my, um, parents transferred me, uh, when I was 13 year old, uh, from an all girl school that I was in to my brother all boys school. So I was 13 at the time, you know, not, not the easiest age to transfer to a all boys school. And, uh, so I became like one out of seven girls in a school of more than 1000 boys. Wow. And it was like being an alien. And for the anecdote, I remember like the girls’ restroom was on the complete other side of the school. I don’t know what they had in mind when they did that. Oh my God. And we would have, so we would go together, obviously, and we would have to cross the whole playground and the boys would just like, stop, literally stop playing soccer, stop doing anything to just like stare at us. I was like being an animal in a zoo. Wow. Yeah. And that would make

Kristi Porter (06:51):

An impact for sure. <laugh>. Oh my gosh. Yeah.

Caroline Troit (06:54):

So I mean though maybe not the best way to, to learn, uh, I think it was like a strong experience and it built a lot of resilience for me because the boys would also, like on top of that, annoy me and tease me as anybody would at such all, and you know, at the time, uh, now I realize it was probably to get my attention, but at the time I took the criticism very seriously. So I built a lot of resilience. I think a lot, I built a lot of gr uh, from that time. And I’m, they’re very, uh, determined when I have something in mind, I don’t give up, I make it happen. And that’s true for my personal life. All my professional life right now, I’ve decided I’m gonna do a marathon extra, a trilon extra, and I didn’t run like three years ago. So, uh, you know, like I, that’s like my strengths, I think. But I have to say, when I talk to my team, I don’t want clones around me. I think, you know, everybody’s got their own strengths that they need to find inside themselves and leverage as medicine as they can. You, for me it’s been great. But for somebody else might be empathy. Might be creativity. And that’s amazing too. You know, I need like that diversity, uh, of skills, uh, in my team.

Kristi Porter (08:05):

Wow. What an experience. So how long were you at the, so did it transition to be a fully girls and boys school or were you still only one of a few the entire time you were there?

Caroline Troit (08:15):

Yeah, so I was there like four years and when I left, you know, we were probably three in my classroom. So, you know, it took time for girls to come to that school. So yeah, pretty much all my, um, education was only with sports and then engineering school, obviously it’s continued <laugh>.

Kristi Porter (08:32):

That sounds like an incredible learning experience. Yeah. Sounds you like. You could have gone in a couple of different directions and it really instilled in you a lot of, a lot of the traits that have helped you be successful over the years. So that’s really exciting. But yeah, what a fascinating experience. I think you could probably write a book on just that <laugh> <laugh> can

Kristi Porter (08:54):

Alluded to your professional journey, who you are, who you have kind of molded yourself to be over the last few years. So let’s talk a little bit about your professional journey. First of all, you’re an engineer, so again, you have all these multi-facets in your background. Engineer graduated from the National School of Mines, and Nancy, I’m gonna say that probably wrong. Okay. <inaudible>, look at me. I’m on par with my French today. So tell us more about at that time, ’cause I don’t hear anything you said so far. Allude to engineering. So how does engineering come into the picture?

Caroline Troit (09:27):

Yes. Uh, like many people, I think pretty, uh, randomly, so to be truthful. So, um, every year at my old boy high school, the best students was selected to go to this great, one of the best engineering prep school in France called Jeanette. So that’s what I did. And at the time, I had no idea what an engineer could do. Uh, but I knew I liked solving problems. I would, I loved math. I, I liked, I would go to bed. I couldn’t find a solution for my problem. I would sleep with my problem. I would wake up at, in the middle of the night or in the morning with the solution. And I like thinking, I think that’s what engineers do. I still do it. I swim every day. And when I go in the pool, I’m in the pool with some ideas, some, some problems. And it keeps me entertained for the hundred laps <laugh>. And then I come out with like, some kind of, uh, OB solution. I, you know, I like this quote from, uh, inch time. It’s not that I’m so smart, I just stay with problems longer. Yeah.

Caroline Troit (10:33):

So anyway, so I get to this engineering prep school, and then I realized it was not gonna be an easy journey at all. The level was very, uh, very high. But on top of that, they had this like, hazing that luckily I became illegal, uh, now. And yeah. So, and, and, uh, I saw the full week. So the Hazers, I don’t know if that makes sense. The Hazers, they would be wearing like middle age costume. They would wake us up in the middle of the night. They would crack the chains, they would yell at us, we would go to out of bed. We, it was a, a board, uh, uh, boarding school. And then they would make us ramp, uh, crawl, like in, uh, muddy trenches. It was that intense at night’s become illegal, actually. So, you know, after that first week, like it was, you know, the purpose of the hazing is to humiliate you.

Caroline Troit (11:25):

And for sure, after that full week, I had, uh, lost, uh, completely my confidence. So this was like a, a tough, uh, a tough time really for me. And I, I struggled. That’s probably the only, I almost gave up. You know, I struggled with burnout, I struggle with anorexia. Uh, and that’s when I, I decided I would start swimming every day. And now that really resurrected me and put me back in the game. And since then, I really learned a great lesson from that. ’cause since then, I, I swim every day. It’s like a religion, which keeps me out of stress. Mm-hmm. Assist balance and centered, which is so super important in operation. We get through so many things that, that, uh, balance is really, really quite critical. So after that, my engineering studies were really great. They opened so many doors for me. I got to do my internships in Italy and in Japan and engineering. So Italy was like oil type company. And then in Japan I worked for Toshiba. Oh, wow. In Japanese company. Yeah. I was really interesting. Cultural.

Kristi Porter (12:32):

Okay. So you also have had the distinct ability to live within all of these different cultures. So what were some of the takeaways from that? What did you learn from that?

Caroline Troit (12:44):

Um, I mean, first I, I find it fa fascinating to work in a different country. I always say that it’s like being on, uh, on vacation all the time. Because, you know, it’s like when you’re on vacation, you’re like, oh, this Yes, amazing. You know, to be able to do it while you work, I just think makes like so much more interesting. Uh, and Japan on top of it, I don’t think there’s one country that’s more different than the Western world. You know, the way, the way they work, the way, you know, it’s like completely different. Their discipline, the cleanliness everywhere in the train, that’s just a amazing expense. No, a tough one. It’s not also a, a country that is very, uh, easy to live in, especially with zero Revenue. An intern, I remember it right. And Egg and Soya every night, <laugh>. Oh wow. <laugh> <laugh>.

Kristi Porter (13:34):

That is in itself a learning experience for sure. So how long were you in the engineering field?

Caroline Troit (13:41):

Uh, so then I, so that was just my internship. So, um, then when I started to look for a job, I had to choose between two great opportunities. One was working for Shell in Italy, and the other one, one <inaudible>. I really decided on L’Oreal because of the values of the company. I remember at the time the plant manager was like, super brilliant, took me around the plants and he talked to me like if I was his daughter. And it was so super general, I could feel the people first mindset from day one in L’Oreal. And that really sold me to it. So it’s actually my career in L’Oreal and I’m a probably a L’Oreal baby, as they call it. Yes. <laugh>.

Amanda Luton (14:26):

So you kind of alluded to the experience in the plant, uh, with your plant managers. And then in the early two thousands, you started your journey as supply chain manager in Maybelline factory. Right. Could you tell us about your first kind of exposure, your first impressions in the, the logistics industry?

Caroline Troit (14:43):

Yes. So straightaway I loved, loved, loved my job. I loved supply chain at L’Oreal. The plant I was working for, it was like the European and maybe leaf plants. It was really a well oiled machine. Were like really under control. And it was fascinating to like be at the, at the center, you know, like patch and be connected with everybody. The, the affiliates, the business, the plans, like all the different departments. And it was fascinating also to see the life of the product from ideation to discontinuation. So I really, I really love that. I love that I could have an impact straight away. I could feel I could have an impact on service and cost and inventory. I could even have an impact beyond my direct scope of responsibility. As an example. I, it didn’t make sense to me that they had like so many, like so many.

Caroline Troit (15:37):

And as a consumer, I couldn’t make the difference between two products, you know? And I was just a young engineer. I’m like, why do you have those two products just the same? So I built a whole, uh, report and analysis and I shared with my management and, and I loved it. And, you know, I was able to influence our business to rationalize the catalog. And after a few years, we reduced the catalog from 10,000 SKUs to 2000 sku, which was wow. Very satisfying for me to be able to have that impact on the organization. The other thing that I really liked is people management, because I was quickly given the opportunity to lead people. When I was 25. I had team months, 20 people. When I was 27, I had a team of 40 people. And when I was 29, I think I was running the whole production unit.

Caroline Troit (16:25):

And I don’t think all field or companies allow for that. Yeah. And um, and certainly, you know, like the science of people is not as easy, I would say the science of, uh, supply chain. So I made a lot of mistake. Uh, but I learned, uh, big time was, was such an incredible opportunity for me, uh, to learn, you know? And, uh, I quickly learned my development area. I was very resilient, quite tough, of course, like with these, uh, engineering studies. But I liked empathy, I liked sensitivity. Had to on this emotional intelligence, and I’m still working on it. Exactly.

Kristi Porter (17:00):

Well, as a consumer, let me thank you for reducing 10,000 SKUs to 2000 SKUs, because I probably would be overwhelmed in the store, otherwise, <laugh> as well. Paralysis. Yeah. Walking

Caroline Troit (17:14):

Down <laugh>.

Kristi Porter (17:15):

I know if somebody inside the company can’t tell the difference between the different products, then those outside are gonna have a really difficult time. So thank you for your early work <laugh>.

Caroline Troit (17:25):

Um,

Kristi Porter (17:25):

Well, I mean, everybody’s heard of L’Oreal. It is the world’s largest cosmetics company. 36 global brands, four divisions over 100 years of history. So few people make it that far, few companies. So congratulations on that. So I, I love some of the, of course, especially here in the US and I imagine in other places around the world, we’re familiar with the commercials, but I love some of the things that you’ve touched on that drew you to the company that maybe we don’t see commercials about. Just the people first culture and what drew you in. So I’d love for you to talk a little more maybe about some of the L’Oreal that we don’t see that happens behind the scenes that makes it a wonderful place for you. Clearly. ’cause you’ve stayed there for so long.

Caroline Troit (18:08):

Yeah, yeah. I mean, first, like, it’s a big company, people don’t realize, because sometimes people think about the brand of L’Oreal, but it’s actually a $40 billion, uh, SaaS companies, I would like to say, like a large portfolio of brands. I will not be able to quote them all <laugh>. And, and they are in four different division that operates in different, uh, distribution channels. We very, we have a worldwide presence and like emerging markets are very important to us. And it’s great because we can balance the exam flows of the market. And that’s really a power of, of L’Oreal our purpose, otherwise is to create beauty that moves the world. And that says it all. And it’s a company that really puts a lot of emphasis on people, on ethics, on sustainability. And I can tell, you know, 24 years I’ve been in this company, and you can really see it like everywhere, everywhere you go. Yeah. So that’s a little bit better.

Kristi Porter (19:09):

And so tell us a little bit more about, so right now you’re in the lux division. Tell us a little bit about what that means and your specific role there.

Caroline Troit (19:18):

Yes. So, so basically, um, I’m in charge of the operations, uh, for North America, uh, luxury division, uh, which means run the operations end-to-end for $3 million. Sales business, luxury division includes like all those amazing brands, Lanco, Mai, <inaudible>, K like our big brands, and then lots of other brands like <inaudible>, it, cosmetics, some small acquisition. You see the people, all the fragrances, the Valentinos, the Ralph, Lauren. Um, and we just acquired, uh, ASAP as well, which is gonna be really exciting for the division. Uh, so my scope in operation is like literally all the functions of operations from manufacturing, sourcing, procurement, all the functions of supply chain, the development team, new product development, uh, the packaging, all these functions of operation. And, and of course my primary job, uh, with that, uh, large scope is to inspire and engage, uh, the 800 people or so that reporting to my team, which means on a day-to-day basis, keeping things stable and encouraging people to, to give their best. Um, that’s,

Kristi Porter (20:31):

You do a couple of things then <laugh>,

Caroline Troit (20:33):

Just a few

Kristi Porter (20:34):

You not a part-time job. Yeah. <laugh>.

Caroline Troit (20:37):

I like to say, you know, like one third of my job is people. Yeah. Uh, one third is execution because you have to be grounded. You have to like fly high, fly low. I want to stay, you know, in touch with what’s going on day-to-day basis. One third execution and one third innovation and transformation. Hmm.

Amanda Luton (20:57):

I gotta write that down. I love that. <laugh>. One-third people, one-third execution, one-third innovation. Uh, I love that. Yes. Um, so in your years with L’Oreal, it sounds like you’ve managed hundreds if not thousands of people. We’d love to hear some of the accomplishments of your company or of your teams that you’re most proud of.

Caroline Troit (21:18):

Yeah. First I’m gonna give a lot of credit to our operation and supply chain team in general. At Rare, the Ryan is a very creative company and our executive team, as they should, they are hyperfocused on innovation, brand products, marketings, and then really rely a lot operation and supply sentiments who run the business, which is great. And I really think about our teams as the one that keeps things structured and organized and make the magic happen and land the plane, you know, don’t like, keep thinking and having so many ideas just land the plane sometimes. So, um, so that’s, that’s really, uh, one thing I would say. And then I also think it was really, uh, impressive. Of course during Covid with all the disruptions we had down, down again, like to for, to see how they could, uh, manage, uh, you know, all the challenges.

Caroline Troit (22:15):

Sometimes we had issues with like tier, like T three supplier issues. It was like we were missing the glue on the rule of labels of the stickers. My God. Like how do we think about that? You know? So our life is, is, uh, full of challenges. And while they do that, we were still like doing the transformation, you know, all the, those programs, those project that we have continued to, uh, to run. Um, so that’s, I give them a lot of credit. Other than that, we have tons of metrics and KPIs. I don’t think you want to hear about that <laugh>. That’d be like, so I’m gonna save you that for a minute. No, I think what really get things done is culture ultimately, and my team and I, we’ve been very focused on driving culture, culture of sustainability, culture of agility, culture of people, <inaudible>, though it’s really embedded already our culture digitalization.

Caroline Troit (23:06):

So, and that’s about like first hiring the right people. And that’s like number one job getting the right people in the bus. And we are in a competitive market in the US and so I always say it’s like a dating game to, uh, get the right people. And then when you got them, you got to treat them like your family. You got to take care of them, you got to respect them to support them and, and to challenge them too. You know, got to push repeat more. Like they can achieve things that they would never, they would never even think they could achieve. Now that’s also part of the philosophy. It’s about reaching the, giving them the context, keeping them the frame, keeping things simple, prioritizing. So that’s, that’s really what I, what we’ve been focused on.

Kristi Porter (23:51):

I love that. I wanna touch on something you said because, uh, you, no matter if you’re a 10 person business or a, you know, global business like L’Oreal, you touched on hiring and that is such a struggle for so many people, especially right now. And I feel like every time we ask this question, we say, especially right now, because it never seems to get any <laugh> easier or better, but I loved what you said about hiring the right people and then nurturing them as family when they come in. So talk to me a little bit about your hiring. What does that look like to you? How does that happen? What are kind of maybe either some of the indicators that you look for and hire for, or the process that you use, but I’d be so curious about that because it’s something so many businesses struggle with.

Caroline Troit (24:36):

Yeah. Um, I mean, first I put a lot of emphasis on succession planning in general because it’s hiring, but it’s also a hiring internally of course in a, in a company like Lorianne. So, um, we have a whole structure of succession planning and I always give as a K P I, the number of powers we spent on succession planning. So we do it, we do that together. We do it by function. We do it in so many ways, uh, just to make sure we anticipate the needs and we think about the option and not give us the time to get the right options. And then, and then in terms of hiring, I think it’s also about the network with, uh, around you and leveraging that network and leveraging other people’s network and network just not compromising to, it’s like what are those best resource that we know they’re the best because we’ve somehow been connected with them in the past. Maybe their, somebody’s worked with them. It’s, it’s again, a bad how much time and effort to put into it just to get people and then like treating them. Right? I mean, I always quote that experience of mine with my plant manager. Honestly, if it wasn’t for him taking me around the plant, the plant and talking to me like his daughter, I would not be in Lian today. I loved Italy. Like I would be not Italy <laugh>.

Kristi Porter (25:55):

Fascinating. Thank you for that. Yeah, I, that is really, I love the K P I for succession planning. I have never heard really. I

Caroline Troit (26:03):

Have never heard that. Yeah. That’s fantastic.

Kristi Porter (26:05):

Okay. And then I also wanted to ask you about, you mentioned before just leadership, another, I feel like something people struggle with all the time. I’m curious that what you’ve learned, uh, you said you’ve made some mistakes. We all have and you’ve learned a lot of along the way. So tell us about some of your lessons learned as a leader.

Caroline Troit (26:26):

Huh? Yeah, I mean, you learn from your mistakes. Definitely. I remember that mistake on like early, uh, management that I was so, uh, direct and was a senior employee and I actually offended her and I could see she was offended. And that really stayed with me and stuck with me. And, you know, I still, I still haven’t completely repaired it. I wrote her a letter, whatever it really like impacted me. And I’ve learned from that, that example that, you know, whatever, whatever the situation, whatever the challenge, you can always do it in the right way and in a nice way and you don’t have to help people.

Kristi Porter (27:06):

Mm-hmm. For sure.

Amanda Luton (27:09):

That can be really difficult too. <laugh>, I know in leadership positions it can be, it can be challenging to speak to people, to get through to people without personally offending people. But you, I do think that there’s a fine line that you can walk. There’s a good balance you could find there. Mm-hmm.

Caroline Troit (27:25):

<affirmative>. Yeah.

Kristi Porter (27:26):

So also tell us, you’ve mentioned Covid, clearly that’s an underlying issue for everybody. So tell us about <laugh>, as you mentioned, never would’ve thought of running out of the adhesive for the label that goes on a product that is not top of mind for me. So I’m curious about some of the other challenges that you’ve had during Covid, maybe not that technical, but how your team kind of rallied around that, what the problem solving looked like.

Caroline Troit (27:53):

Yeah, I, I mean, I think it was about being very focused because there were definitely like different phases. Yeah. You know, first we had to somehow keep the distribution centers and the manufacturing sites open and that was a priority. And just that in itself took a lot of energy and that’s where we focus then. I mean, there were like so many different phases, but if I like fast track a little bit, then we suddenly, you know, ran out of like those components and raw material because of the, you know, Asia, all the footprint we had. So we had to pull our best resources to, you know, have, find creative solutions to, uh, solve those challenges and then try to anticipate as soon as we saw the signals, right, you could see the signal that the transportation lead times we’re gonna increase. Okay, well then let’s take actions to try to have release disruptions because of that. So that was then like this phase of like super focused on service. And then we had like a shift in business, like a volatility. That’s unbelievable. We had something like this boom in the fragrance category. I don’t think anybody would have expected especi

Kristi Porter (29:09):

People at home. I guess they were,

Caroline Troit (29:13):

I still don’t quite understand. Of course, there’s been ton of reports and then I’m still like, really?

Kristi Porter (29:18):

I’m like

Amanda Luton (29:19):

Wearing less makeup but wearing I more perfume, more perfume

Kristi Porter (29:23):

<laugh>. Yeah.

Caroline Troit (29:25):

Yeah. No, it was really, it’s been really big like in, in the us so we had to respond to that. I mean, the volatility’s been unbelievable. So, uh, our agility and good thing we were working on that like many years before. Otherwise we are have been completely stuck. But we always, I mean, a agility is really the name of the game for us. We need to make sure we have always spare capacity. We need to make sure we always focus on our lead times and try to reduce them as much as we possibly can. <crosstalk>.

Amanda Luton (29:54):

Well, Christy, I know just from the conversation so far, like what an impressive career. What an impressive woman, Caroline. I’m really, this has been a, a great conversation so far, but kind of to change directions with over 15 years at L’Oreal. How do you feel like the supply chain has evolved specifically in the cosmetics industry, just in your time with L’Oreal?

Caroline Troit (30:17):

Yeah, I think it’s evolved massively. I think supply chains become more and more central in the company with, you know, the growth of e-commerce with Obtainability, with the disruption from Covid. We’ve earned a bigger seat at the table and we’ve organized, uh, ourself in a way that we are hyperconnected with the business and we really solve our challenges together. It’s almost like this symbiotic relationship, the way I would describe it. And together we can set the future and the strategy together. It’s really also, uh, so critical and so much at the center of anything in, in Morre. The other thing I would say is we live in a, a very data driven world, which, you know, year after year then I’ve been in supply chain in Maria, I could see more, you know, and supply chain’s brought a lot to the business in terms of leveraging that data.

Caroline Troit (31:12):

And now I also think with the amount of data we have in supply chain, this new chapter of AI is like, so super exciting. I think, uh, we, we are gonna be able to, you know, add more value to the business and reduce some of the low added, uh, tests. So I’m really, uh, excited for that. And also think to that extent, the skills of our teams in supply chain are becoming more and more marketable. I think I can see how other functions could benefit from it, and I can see more transfers happening from supply chain to, um, the rest of the business. And equally I can see more, uh, people being attracted by supply chain. I think it’s becoming a, a really a more exciting and attractive function. It’s so like transverse, it’s got so much complexity, you can have an impact. I don’t think there’s been a a time where supply chain, having a current supply chain is more exciting and like sex in a way. <laugh>.

Amanda Luton (32:10):

Yeah. Well, and I think too, before Covid, people didn’t understand what supply chain was. Just like Christie said a minute ago, who, who would’ve ever thought that running out of an adhesive was gonna slow down the, getting the cosmetics to the Kroger shelf or whatever. But once people start realizing all the different ways you can work and the different jobs and different skill sets that you can, that you can utilize within supply chain, it’s really exciting. And it’s very interesting. So much more interesting than if you just think of manufacturing, distribution, transportation, I think that’s probably where a lot of people’s minds go right away. But when you start thinking about marketing and product design and the logistics behind everything, and like you said, Caroline, the really data-driven aspects of supply chain, there’s almost room for any and everybody, you know, in all different types of backgrounds and education and skillsets.

Caroline Troit (33:05):

Yeah. And the complexity, I think, you know, it would like excite and interest any good brain <laugh>. Yes. Yeah. Yeah.

Amanda Luton (33:12):

Creative brains, really analytical brains, really. Lots of different types of people I think are, are very well suited for supply chain. Yeah,

Kristi Porter (33:20):

That’s an excellent point. And also I can also just hear you like your leadership and you’re thinking out for your, you know, you’re looking out for your team and seeing how their skills are gonna grow. And it speaks to that succession planning as well. So that says a lot about you,

Caroline Troit (33:35):

But I wrote this book about how there’s not so many CEOs that come from supply chain, but now we can see a trend. And I think it’s really a super interesting, I can, I can see it happening.

Kristi Porter (33:46):

Yes,

Kristi Porter (33:48):

Absolutely. Yeah. No, that’s fascinating. That’s an excellent point. So L’Oreal well-known for the slogan because you’re worth it. So we talked about supply chain, we talked a little bit about the value chain before, but I’m curious for you, what is the value that you think logistics plays in the end to consumer satisfaction? We, you know, we talked a little about, in some instances it feels like the world is shrinking in some ways it’s getting more complicated. And even just to kind of what you were just mentioning as well as the motto for the company about bringing beauty into the world and things. So I’m curious for you and what you’ve seen, how do you think logistics plays an, uh, a part in that end? Customer satisfaction? Yeah,

Caroline Troit (34:31):

I mean, I think, uh, logistic is all about, uh, consumer satisfaction. Because if you think about it, it’s about delivering the right product with the right quality and the right cost, the right service and all of that is supply chain. Now, I think also now the dimensions of the experience also counting more. And that’s about how easy it is to find a product. Mm-hmm. How it’s been delivered to your home, how sustainably it’s been made. So all those things. It’s own supply chain. We do so much <laugh>, actually everything

Kristi Porter (35:06):

Supply chain. Yeah.

Caroline Troit (35:07):

Everything’s supply chain. And so, um, and we, so, you know, then we have to make sure in operation we stay connected to that consumer value of course. So I’m, in some ways to do it is obviously we use the ratings of the products we need. We develop new products. So super important for the development team, the packaging team, they constantly look at the, the ratings to improve at each renovation, uh, value. We use n p s scores on our eCommerce to understand their customer satisfaction. I really love, there’s a new measurement that we’ve introduced. It’s called p i n and it’s product in ingredient labeling. And you can find it on TE’s website and it tells you how sustainably the product is, including like all dimensions, how it’s been made, how it’s been transported, like all of that. And so you, you scan your product with the data metrics and you go on the website and you will see, uh, that measurement.

Caroline Troit (36:02):

I think that’s super interesting. And it will even probably educate the customers and help them make the right, uh, decisions. And then, you know, in terms of like our frame, ’cause we do like those frames to help us like focus our energy. It’s really about how we maximize that consumer value when we decide our priorities and, uh, the way we work. We don’t like ize one or the other. And I think that’s super important. I think we first, there’s like enough project we can do that we can really prioritize the one that deliver all dimensions. And we, we will try to prioritize those project that, you know, we’ll move the lid on everything, the sustainability cost, the agility, uh, all of that together.

Caroline Troit (36:48):

Yeah. I a hundred percent agree.

Amanda Luton (36:50):

Going back to sustainability again, seems to be a major theme for this <laugh> conversation and for your life. Yeah. Right. It’s becoming more and more important to the consumers and L’Oreal is known for having, uh, extensive sustainability commitments. So Lene, please tell us more about them and how you’ve, uh, achieved an ACE score in all three c D p rankings receiving this distinction seven years in a row. We would love to know a little bit more about that.

Caroline Troit (37:17):

Yeah, yeah. So I mean, L’Oreal embarked in that sustainability journey. First, like long time ago. It’s like over 10 years ago it was first, but now we’ve accelerated that journey with the launch of our program for the future. And it’s like a very precise roadmap to 2030 to achieve some reduction of our greenhouse gas emission per finished good unit. And, and also it includes like the transportation element where we will also reduce by 50% our c o two emission. It’s a problem that was, uh, developed with scientific experts. It’s really based on a boundary approach. It’s not based on like commercial goal. It’s really very profoundly in the science. And I think another way the company’s really removed the needle on sustainability and created really a culture of sustainability because you can feel it in the company. Everybody’s like passionate and everybody’s like contributing to some extent to the topic.

Caroline Troit (38:22):

So it’s, it’s really the, the culture that they’ve created. And when I think about it, there’s a few powerful things that I think the company’s done. One is like defining some super precise and public goals available packaging with like one area that, uh, I see I’m accountable at four. We have some really ambitious goal of redo making sure, like first making sure that, uh, a hundred percent of our plastic will be from recycled all bio source space right to Twin 30. And also making sure that all our plastic will be either recyclable, combustible, refillable, or reusable by 2030. These are very, uh, difficult, uh, goals to achieve. And those goals, that’s part of our, your end review is part of our incentive program. Every team that we have with talk sustainability, we have specific sections. Uh, the other thing that I, I find interesting is we really empowered all our team to, uh, contribute by educating them.

Caroline Troit (39:21):

And we all had to take, uh, very intense e-learnings, like hours and hours and take tests at the end, which, you know, even for an engineer, it was not easy. Those tests were not easy and everybody had to do it. But I think that was super powerful to, for everyone to learn about the, the topic. We also have sustainability leads in every function region division. And that’s important because no matter what the topic is complex. So, uh, having those experts around to help develop this roadmap, these roadmaps is, is really, um, really helpful. And then lastly I would say is you can do it on your own. We can do it on our own. And the partnership with our ecosystem, our suppliers, our retailers is very important too. So we do what we call spread the green vibes event, uh, with those partners to i d a to develop point maps together. And that’s super important to all our, I IQs with vendors always include the sustainability that I mentioned. And that’s always something we look at same level as like the cause literally.

Amanda Luton (40:33):

And there’s also, there’s many other corporate responsibility initiatives that L’Oreal has undertaken, such as with the Ukraine war diversity, which you spoke to a little bit earlier, empowering women scientists, youth programs and more. So tell us about a couple of your favorites.

Caroline Troit (40:51):

Yeah, I mean, I’d say at the, and me, I don’t know them all because every brand has one and it’s, it’s great because they’re always connected to the brand culture, but also like it’s relevant for operation. Uh, so all our sites, they have some kind of corporate, uh, social responsibility program. Uh, so I, I can give you those examples. For example, in my, um, distribution center, in our distribution center in South Brunswick, we have a program where, uh, adults with autism, autism work in the assembly department. Mm-hmm. The manufacturing sites in Piscataway, we have a program to educate our operatives to become mechanics if they are willing to, and of course that’s all free resources for them. So I think these are great programs. And then if I’m gonna quote one that I think you guys will like is it’s cosmetics. They have this program about women confidence at work.

Caroline Troit (41:48):

And it really resonates with me because obviously with my team, I, I do a lot of coaching and it’s something that I’ve noticed that women don’t, don’t have, some women don’t have as much confidence and they would tell me, oh no, I’m not ready for the next step. I can’t do it. And like, very talented women obviously, and I don’t have the skills, it’s gonna be too much work. And I think it’s, uh, slows them down versus some of the male peers. Uh, and actually they, they’ve proven that 57% of women think they would have advanced their career more if they had more confidence. So I think that’s super interesting initiative. And this program provides free resources to help solve that women at work confidence crisis.

Kristi Porter (42:35):

Wow, that’s really interesting. And a crazy statistic. <laugh>,

Amanda Luton (42:40):

It’s, I I think it’s fantastic. ’cause I think sometimes that’s all women need is a little, I mean more than a pat on the back, but somebody to say, you’re smart, you are capable, you can do this, let’s do this together. Or here’s how we can help. Or some sort of assistance or guidance. Like it’s absolutely vital, I think. Mm-hmm.

Kristi Porter (42:59):

<affirmative>. And it makes, it’s interesting to see, uh, and exciting to see the investment in a soft skill like that as well. Like clearly training and job training and hard skills and things like that makes so much sense, especially for advancement and things. But, uh, it’s also another one that I don’t hear many people talking about is just investing in soft skills like that, like confidence. So big kudos to L’Oreal for that. That’s a terrific initiative. Before we let you go, I have a couple final questions. And of course I cannot let you escape without asking, what are a couple of your favorite products, <laugh>, because I’m gonna head out to the store this weekend. <laugh>.

Caroline Troit (43:36):

Okay. Really. Alright. So my favorite product, here we go. I love the eyeshadows. It’s called the Metallic Glitters. I love my glit. I love it. It’s like, I dunno if you could see them. But anyway, metallic glitters from, uh, urban Decay. They’re super fun and not everybody wear them, so I get a lot of compliments with them. So my friends love them and I love s I love many products from s Yeah. Um, uh, but I used the clearly corrective dark spot every day. Okay. Like that. Okay. That’s

Amanda Luton (44:08):

<laugh>. I have to share. I have a loreal connection because when I was in college, I worked for all four years in college. I worked full-time and went to school full-time, but I worked at the Lancombe counter at or von store, <laugh> Nice. In Lincoln, Nebraska. Yes. So shout out to Von Maher and Lincoln. Um, but I loved working at the makeup counter in the store. Lancome was really exciting, exciting. And I have a total love for skincare and makeup. I always did, but working there especially. But it was so much fun and I love still visiting Makeup

Caroline Troit (44:40):

<laugh>,

Amanda Luton (44:41):

But it was really exciting and I didn’t even make the connection that Lancome was owned by L’Oreal. I mean, I, I knew it from way back, but didn’t make the connection again until you had said that earlier. So how about that, <laugh>

Kristi Porter (44:56):

And possibly the only time the Lancombe counter at Von Mar in Lincoln, Nebraska will ever get a shout out. So that’s

Amanda Luton (45:03):

Very true. Yeah, that’s the first, that’s the first

Kristi Porter (45:06):

That is amazing.

Caroline Troit (45:08):

I’m going to Nebraska soon,

Amanda Luton (45:09):

By the way. I’m gonna, them, she’ll have to stop by

Caroline Troit (45:13):

Nebraska in two weeks. Yeah.

Kristi Porter (45:15):

Awesome. Ask if they know Amanda <laugh>,

Amanda Luton (45:17):

Right? Yeah. How could they forget me?

Kristi Porter (45:20):

<laugh> 20 years ago, <laugh>. And then my my final question of, of for you is when we ask a lot of people here, um, and we’ve certainly touched on aspects of this as well, but what does the phrase logistics with purpose mean to you?

Caroline Troit (45:36):

Yeah, it’s, uh, it’s such a nice one. I don’t know who, uh, coin it, but yeah, I mean like our purpose in Orient is to create the beauty that moves the world. And I think it really applies to logistics in many way. Our purpose is to create the best products, best quality, <inaudible>, best cost, et cetera, that will boost, uh, confidence. Again, talk about confidence for men and women, uh, around the world. And when I think about it, it’s kind of sounds a little al fatal for the Western world where we have like excess amount of beauty products around us, but it’s not everywhere in the world world. And I think one of the purpose of L’Oreal is certainly to democratize beauty and touch every consumer, every consumer, consumer, a woman in the world that can benefit. But I also think about it as our wellbeing and making a difference for our employees and their ities. Making them part of the story, making them valued, making them recognize, um, suppliers we, we work with. And finally, and that’s maybe, and on that sustainability note again is how we act to protect the planet, to find the climate change and preserve na, nature and the beauty, diversity, the biodiversity around us.

Kristi Porter (47:00):

I love that. Thank you so much.

Amanda Luton (47:03):

So as we wrap today, Caroline, how can our listeners connect with you and of course, learn more about everything, all the exciting initiatives that you’re doing at L’Oreal.

Caroline Troit (47:14):

It’s a great way. Um, so we can connect with the Arlington and make sure I read them. I send a message.

Kristi Porter (47:21):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Yes. And so what is one thing are everyone should go look up on your website that, how did they get to the carbon thing? Like how to tell their where the, the supply chain and their sustainability and their supply chain for the product. Oh,

Caroline Troit (47:35):

It’s very visible. If you go on the L’Oreal website, you’ll go straight, straight into that. Easily for the future. Lots of you and data to share. It’s very

Kristi Porter (47:45):

Fantastic. Thank you so much for your time. This was so fun, so great. You have such a breadth of experience to share with us. And just even, I just love hearing you talk about your team and getting excited about that. And, um, as well as your, you know, previous boss and your background just so much. And I think you bring a really interesting aspect of supply chain as well and how to look at that from all aspects. And even just as you said, it’s tying the world together and exciting to see kind of the future of that. So thank you for all that you’re innovating and executing and whatever that other third is. I forgot already, but it’s amazing.

Caroline Troit (48:21):

Innovating, executing, and people are

Kristi Porter (48:24):

People. That’s

Caroline Troit (48:25):

People <laugh>

Kristi Porter (48:26):

Course people. I love that. I’m gonna take that with me. Thank you so much for your time. This was so much fun. Amanda. I hope this isn’t, this is the first, hopefully not the last time that we get to do this together. But Caroline, it was a blast. Thank you so much for your time. We appreciate you and all you’re doing. Thank

Caroline Troit (48:41):

You, Christie. Thank you Amanda. It was a pleasure to be with you with uh, it was fun. It was fun. I like doing that. That’s my first podcast. But

Kristi Porter (48:49):

You did great.

Would you rather watch the show in action?

Featured Guests

Caroline Troit leads Operations for the Luxe division of L’Oréal North America. She has end-to-end operational responsibilities for a portfolio of American brands (Kiehl’s, Urban Decay, IT Cosmetics, Ralph Lauren, Youth To The People). In addition, she oversees the supply chain for all of L’Oréal’s luxury brands in the US and Canada, including Lancôme, Armani, YSL, and several fragrance brands. Caroline started her career at L’Oréal 23 years ago. She has held a variety of senior supply chain roles in manufacturing, international marketing and in sales for three of L’Oréal’s divisions (Consumer, Active Cosmetics and Luxe), in three different countries. A highly innovative leader, Caroline likes to foster transversal partnerships that position Operations as a strong driver of growth for the business. She has solid experience with change management and has successfully delivered large-scale projects such as an extensive portfolio simplification for Maybelline, or the creation of an entity dedicated to beauty device production for L’Oréal. She has deployed sustainability initiatives for Kiehl’s, contributed to the modernization of Urban Decay and IT Cosmetics’ operations functions, and more recently, to the doubling of the e-commerce volume the luxe business in the United States. Caroline is a graduate from Engineering school Mines de Nancy. She lives in New Jersey with her husband Thomas, daughter Amy and son Tim. Connect with Caroline on LinkedIn.

Hosts

Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Amanda Luton

VP of Production, Supply Chain Now

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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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Mary Kate Love

VP, Marketing

Mary Kate Love is currently the VP of marketing at Supply Chain Now focused on brand strategy and audience + revenue growth. Mary Kate’s career is a testament to her versatility and innovative spirit: she has experience in start-ups, venture capital, and building innovation initiatives from the ground up: she previously helped lead the build-out of the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific and before that, MxD (Manufacturing times Digital): the Department of Defense’s digital manufacturing innovation center. Mary Kate has a passion for taking complicated ideas and turning them into reality: she was one of the first team members at MxD and the first team member at the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific.

Mary Kate dedicates her extra time to education and mentorship: she was one of the founding Board Members for Women Influence Chicago and led an initiative for a city-wide job shadow day for young women across Chicago tech companies and was previously on the Board of Directors at St. Laurence High School in Chicago, Young Irish Fellowship Board and the UN Committee for Women. Mary Kate is the founder of National Supply Chain Day and enjoys co-hosting podcasts at Supply Chain Now. Mary Kate is from the south side of Chicago, a mom of two baby boys, and an avid 16-inch softball player. She holds a BS in Political Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

Amanda is a production and marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Amanda currently manages, produces, and develops modern digital content for Supply Chain Now and their clients. Amanda has previously served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah, and founded and managed her own successful digital marketing firm, Magnolia Marketing Group. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now production team, you can find Amanda in the kitchen, reading, listening to podcasts, or enjoying time with family.

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Constantine Limberakis

Host

Constantine Limberakis is a thought leader in the area of procurement and supply management. He has over 20 years of international experience, playing strategic roles in a wide spectrum of organizations related to analyst advisory, consulting, product marketing, product development, and market research.Throughout his career, he's been passionate about engaging global business leaders and the broader analyst and technology community with strategic content, speaking engagements, podcasts, research, webinars, and industry articles.Constantine holds a BA in History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MBA in Finance & Marketing / Masters in Public & International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh.

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

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

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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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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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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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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

Tyler Ward serves as Supply Chain Now's Director of Sales. Born and raised in Mid-Atlantic, Tyler is a proud graduate of Shippensburg University where he earned his degree in Communications. After college, he made his way to the beautiful state of Oregon, where he now lives with his wife and daughter.

With over a decade of experience in sales, Tyler has a proven track record of exceeding targets and leading high-performing teams. He credits his success to his ability to communicate effectively with customers and team members alike, as well as his strategic thinking and problem-solving skills.

When he's not closing deals, you can find Tyler on the links or cheering on his favorite football and basketball teams. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing pick-up basketball, and traveling back to Ocean City, Maryland, his favorite place!

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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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Greg White

Principal & CMO, 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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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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