Supply Chain Now
Episode 1069

You always move forward, but you never get to the end. The struggle is valuable, and you have to keep working towards the future, working towards the prize. The journey is more important than the destination, and we're always on the journey.

- Kevin L. Jackson, Host of Digital Transformers on Supply Chain Now

Episode Summary

The Supply Chain Buzz is Supply Chain Now’s regular Monday livestream, held at 12n ET each week. This show focuses on some of the leading stories from global supply chain and global business, always with special guests – the most important of which is the live audience!

This week’s edition of The Buzz featured co-hosts Scott Luton and Greg White as well as Digital Transformers Host Kevin L. Jackson. In addition to commenting on the latest news stories, they reflected on the meaning of Martin Luther King Jr. Day and the important work that continues in the spirit of his legacy.

In this livestream, created in collaboration with a live Supply Chain Now audience, Kevin, Greg, and Scott discussed:

• How the automotive industry is embracing digital operating models as a way to improve their visibility into the supply chain and the analytical capabilities that will allow them to respond to disruptions

• What retailers such as Nike learned from epic inventory gluts in 2022, and the changes that may be made to the traditional omnichannel retail model as a result

• The noble undertaking being pursued by the fashion brand Mango in order to improve the sustainability and human rights performance of this notoriously difficult supply chain

• Retail trends that we may see in 2023, including immersive experiences, data (followed by data and data), hyper personalization, and the use of video in eCommerce marketing

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:00:03):

Welcome to Supply Chain. Now the voice of global supply chain supply chain now focuses on the best in the business for our worldwide audience, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and today’s critical issues, the challenges and opportunities. Stay tuned to hear from those Making Global Business happen right here on supply chain now.

Scott Luton (00:00:31):

Hey, good morning, good afternoon, good evening, Scott Luton, Greg White and Kevin Jackson here with you on Supply Chain. Now welcome to today’s livestream, Greg, how you doing?

Greg White (00:00:41):

I’m doing very well, Scott. How are you doing?

Scott Luton (00:00:43):

I am doing wonderful and great to see you.

Greg White (00:00:48):

<inaudible>.

Scott Luton (00:00:48):

What’s that? <laugh>.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:00:49):

Yeah. <laugh>.

Scott Luton (00:00:52):

Well, Anne, Kevin, we

Greg White (00:00:54):

Are totally unscripted here. For anyone who has any doubt,

Kevin L. Jackson (00:00:57):

<laugh> No, I’m still, uh, I’m still kind of woozy from that swoosh <laugh>,

Scott Luton (00:01:03):

Not you. You’ve been used to beating the speed of sound forever. Kevin, you can’t be woozy. <laugh>. True. Well, great to see you

Kevin L. Jackson (00:01:10):

Both just trying to keep up.

Scott Luton (00:01:11):

<laugh> trying. I hear that. Uh, aren’t we all? Aren’t we all? Well, hey, today’s show, it’s the digital Transformers of the supply chain Buzz here at Supply Chain now, and we share some of the leading stories across global business focused on news and key developments. And folks get ready. Cause we want to hear from you as well. But before we get into that, um, Kevin and Greg mm-hmm. <affirmative> even more important than the buzz and digital transformers and global business, all that stuff. Today is m l k day 2023, right. Martin Luther King, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. One of my favorite quotes here until Justice rolls down like waters and righteousness, like a mighty stream. That is the Montgomery Civil Rights, uh, monument, I believe, Montgomery, Alabama. Um, with that as a backdrop, Greg and Kevin and Greg gonna start with you. When you think of, um, uh, Dr. King’s immense, uh, change and contributions and leadership and legacy, what’s some of your thoughts that comes to your mind?

Greg White (00:02:11):

Well, I mean, if anyone’s ever watched, watched this before, they, they probably have a pretty good idea. But just to reinforce it, um, obviously Dr. King is a great leader. Um, you know, he, he led, um, with, with love and learning. And I, I think that’s a really important thing. One, you know, one of my favorite quotes was my post today instead of an article I posted that, um, you know, you cannot drive out hate with hate, only love. I’m paraphrasing, of course, only love can do that. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I think that’s an important thing. Un you know, what I’ve, what I’m thinking about today though, Scott, honestly, is that because of, of when he was killed, he was a history lesson for me. I never actually got to hear him in person or, or see him or anything like that. And I think about how how many people have kind of that experience of only, only hearing what people say about Dr.

Greg White (00:03:11):

King. And I think it is worthwhile, definitely worthwhile to go back and hear it in the man’s own words. Um, either in writing, um, or in, uh, you know, in the, the videos or films as they were called in. Um, and understand the passion, the, in internal, it was an internal message. I mean, he didn’t use a script. There was one instance where he was asked to speak at a church on, uh, last minute notice. And, and he had no script. Um, and it, it was about the Selma sanitation workers that he was speaking. Yeah. He was supposed to speak at a larger event. That event got canceled in the last moment. He was asked to speak at a church. And, um, just the, I mean the, uh, um, gosh, just the complete honesty and openness with it, the consistency. I mean, considering everything that he endured, that he stuck to the message of only love can solve this problem. It, it’s true. It is a truly amazing thing. And regardless of what your purpose is, taking that approach, uh, to everything, everything that you do.

Scott Luton (00:04:25):

Hmm. Well said Greg. Kevin.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:04:29):

Well, you know, I was, um, looking at, uh, a new show last night, and they were talking about how the King Center was going to celebrate today. And they, um, one of the things they were, um, sort of, uh, I guess bringing up is the fact that, uh, a lot of people would ask, how would Dr. King, uh, see today, like, you know, you, they, they showed a graph looking at, um, the economic welfare of blacks, uh, versus whites versus, um, Latinos and, and others. And it said, from 1960, all the way to now, the line that represented blacks was still on the bottom. Hmm. And it said, well, you know, how would Dr. King feel about that after all these years? We still haven’t made any, any progress. And I said, well, you always move forward, but you never get to the end. The struggle is valuable, um, but it will never end.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:05:50):

It doesn’t end. You have to keep working. You have to keep, uh, working towards, uh, the future, working towards the pri the, the prize. So don’t be upset if you don’t think there has been advancement. Um, there has been advancement. And, um, you need to accept the fact that you will always be struggling. Mm-hmm. And, um, be, you know, and accept the, the good things, uh, as well. Hmm. So it, it, it was kind of, um, it, it sort of think, you know, you, if you are in the struggle, you’re still working. You’re, you’re still valuing change. And it’s important to value the effort. It’s the journey is more important than the destination. And we’re always on the journey.

Scott Luton (00:06:52):

We are, uh, whether we acknowledge it or not, uh, on the tough days, on the good days, all points in between. And I appreciate you and Greg both sharing some of what, um, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s legacy means to you both. Uh, Tom Raftery, good to see you here. He’s got another quote, uh, one of his favorites is quote, let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. I like that one too. Tom, great to have you here. Um, okay. And just, uh, on a much lighter note, and Greg, Kevin, thanks again. And folks, feel free to drop. This is a special day, uh, whether it’s your favorite m l k quote or related quote, or maybe it’s something, you know, part of your service initiative, something you’re doing today, uh, a special tradition or maybe a way you’re honoring, uh, Dr.

Scott Luton (00:07:39):

King’s legacy throughout the year. Right? Not just one day. Feel free to drop that in the comment, and we’ll try to recognize that throughout. Um, on a much lighter note, I wanna share this. Uh, so with that said, over the weekend, our, uh, weekly LinkedIn newsletter, easy for me to say, <laugh>, uh, was dedicated, uh, to all kinds of, uh, quotes and takes on Dr. King and a lot more. So y’all check that out. I think we’re gonna drop the link to that, um, in the chat. Okay. So Greg and Kevin, uh, we ought to recognize also Catherine and Amanda, Chantel, all the folks behind the scenes help to make it happen today. Happy, happy Buzz Day to you as well, Catherine <laugh>. Um, alright. Before we, we drive into, uh, I think four stores we’re gonna tackle today, Greg and Kevin, I want to ask one of your favorite highlights from the weekend. Now, uh, and Greg, I’ll start with you. I know the Chiefs didn’t play <laugh> because they’re getting ready. They got like the number one seed, but what’s one of your favorite highlights over the weekend? Greg?

Greg White (00:08:41):

Uh, you mean sports highlights, or just generally what happened?

Scott Luton (00:08:44):

General highlights, whatever your, one of your favorite things that took place over the weekend.

Greg White (00:08:48):

Uh, so some, uh, some friends of mine are looking for a home in the area, in the Hilton Head area, and I got to tag along with them and see, not just see them experience that. And I think we’ve all been through the strain of, of home search and, you know, trying to find just the right place and almost never knowing whether it is the right place, but also to see how they, they approached it to see some really cool places. I mean, honestly, um, some places that I had never seen around the area. And that was really enlightening. And just to see what was really cool was to see how they went through the thought process as a couple and, and, um, you know, communicated on what they liked or disliked or eliminated or included in their continuing search. Uh, honestly, it was kind of great to be a, just an observer, <laugh>, right? No dog in

Kevin L. Jackson (00:09:45):

That <laugh>. Right. You never know if it’s the right pick until 10 years afterwards you look back, oh, yeah, we should have did this, or we did that. Right. You know, you never know at the time,

Greg White (00:09:57):

Hey, any, if you can pick it home and, and not be, uh, upset about it till 10 years later, I think you’ve done a really good job picking

Scott Luton (00:10:05):

<laugh>, right? <laugh>. That’s right. Uh, I love that one. Then Greg, uh, got new, new neighbors on the island there. Uh, Greg and Greg’s got a new headshot. Love that. Uh, Greg, um, the Viking Lost, was Lost was his favorite <laugh> thing that I love that Greg Scooter, <laugh> <laugh>

Greg White (00:10:25):

Must fan or Bears

Scott Luton (00:10:27):

Name. Um, and Kevin, uh, one of your favorite things from the weekend?

Kevin L. Jackson (00:10:32):

Well, it’s kind of, it was, it was, it was kind of weird with respect to a favorite thing, because, you know, on the, uh, on the weekend, everybody sort of laid back and, uh, nobody cooks. You’re always doing fast food. And, um, uh, tell my wife Lisa, and I was, it was, you know, Saturday evening, and we were, um, thinking about looking at, uh, you know, doing some binge watching on the tv, like every, that’s what Americans do on Saturday night now, <laugh>, uh, <laugh>. So, so, uh, so she, she said, uh, I, I, I kind of said, Hey, so what do you want to eat tonight? And she said, well, I don’t know. Uh, and I said, Hey, um, uh, you wanna go get a sub, or you want to get McDonald’s, or you wanna get some Chinese? And, you know, and she looked at me and said, I don’t want fast food. I want to go to a restaurant <laugh>. And said, wow, that’s a great thing to do. Let’s go. And it was, it was so much fun going out on a date with my wife, <laugh>. We, we went to PF Changs talked, you know, had some, had a couple of cocktails. Uh, yeah, the food was pretty good, you know, know. And it was like we were out, you know, just, just enjoying a, a restaurant, which was, uh, it’s been a while. So, uh, that was good. That was a good thing. They’re fans. That was my favorite for

Scott Luton (00:12:07):

The weekend. Love that Kevin. And clearly the, uh, the production team here is big fans, uh, very sweet, Kevin as they steak <laugh>. Um, and, and Greg, you, you look for a min, like a, for a moment that pf Changs, you’ve, you’ve been there for big

Greg White (00:12:21):

Fan. Yeah. Um, they have, uh, I think they call it moose pork. It’s like, oh yeah, grapes. Oh my gosh, that stuff is so delicious.

Scott Luton (00:12:31):

<laugh>.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:12:31):

I like the lettuce wraps, you know? Yeah. For the, the appetizer. The, and the, um, yeah, I had some pep pepper steak. Uh, that was

Scott Luton (00:12:40):

Really good. Oh, that sounds great. You know, I’ll just, uh, we spent some time home with my folks over the weekend, and, um, maybe not over the weekend, but one of my recent, recent conversations with mom, we talked about MWA in Augusta, Georgia, which was a outstanding Chinese restaurant as we were growing up. And, and they had some of the best all if it was good, but these chicken wings, holy cow. So mom, if you’re listening today, uh, we are reminiscing on the infamous, uh, uas restaurant in Augusta, GA. Okay. So, Greg and Kevin, now that you’ve gotten us all starving <laugh>, which y’all talk about delicious food and sweet dates and, and, uh, real estate transactions, let’s get into some of the stories of the day. And I wanna start with here, with this, uh, this take here, uh, from automotive world, from our friend at, uh, Patrick Van Hole, and we’re gonna be talking about digital transformations impact on moving the auto industry forward, which is obviously last few years had a really challenging time. So, Kevin, let’s start with you. Give us, uh, give us some of the, maybe the gist of, uh, this read here.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:13:44):

Well, you know, we’ve gone through, uh, quite ordeal in, in supply chain and automotive has been really, um, in the pickle, uh, because the increased needs of semiconductor chips. And there was, um, I mean, a car is nothing but a computer on wheels now. And with the, uh, the, the war and supply chain issues, there was a big issue with manufacturing, uh, lines, getting the parts, the electronic and computer parts that they needed. Um, also with, you know, inflation and, uh, economic, uh, instability, the transportation issues. And there were big changes that whipped through all of the supply ch supply tiers in the automotive, uh, industry. So, uh, increasing lead times for both the components and raw materials. So, um, the automotive industry really, um, took it to heart and focused on transforming, uh, their supply chain planning in order to stay competitive. So the entire auto automo industry right now is, is really looking to improve their capabilities by transitioning to digital operating models so that it can actually see and analyze data so that it can respond. And this in a, this is in a, a global view, uh, because just focusing on local or regional is just, it’s just not a, not enough. Mm-hmm. And looking across industries, right? How does the semiconductor industry affect my ability to, uh, produce a vehicle? And this is really kind of revolutionary, uh, 40 automotive industry. Mm-hmm.

Scott Luton (00:15:53):

All right. So, Greg, I know this is one of your favorite industries. Uh, your thoughts here?

Greg White (00:15:57):

Well, I mean, I think a few of us have experienced it firsthand. Eight months wait for a vehicle. Unfortunate timing in our family. Not, fortunately, I didn’t pay for all these, but, uh, we needed, we needed three cars during the time when it was most, uh, most expensive and most difficult to, to get a vehicle. And we had three completely different experiences. So that, that goes to the complexity of the problem. And to Kevin, your point earlier, um, one car was coming, literally coming from Germany and waiting on a wiring harness that is built in, in Ukraine, <laugh>, so

Kevin L. Jackson (00:16:41):

<laugh>, right?

Greg White (00:16:42):

Um, so the, the lead time just continued to extend because of that, as the factories were abandoned and, um, you know, and production became more and more difficult in the city. So, um, and of course, I’m sure they shifted at some point, right? But it’s a very, very complex situation. I, I think the other thing we have to acknowledge is that a lot of companies that are multi-billions, some of them the largest companies in the world have not embraced, have not embraced digital supply chains because, uh, there is so much industrial espionage, particularly in the automotive industry, that they’re afraid to announce anything too early for fear of it, of the vehicle being knocked off and, you know, and, um, or, you know, some feature that, that they think keeps them ahead of the crowd being copied before they, they can get the car to market.

Greg White (00:17:38):

So there are some market pressures, um, that need, they need to figure out how to handle to allow them to be more transparent within their supplier, uh, within their supplier tiers too. So there’s just a lot, uh, it, it’s very complex. Look, uh, all these articles that we talk about every day, they talk about disruptions and they talk about, um, black swan events and all these various difficulties, all of which are going on all the time for all of time that we’ve had supply chains, right? So, um, what ha what what has really changed is that now people are aware of who is failing in their supply chain and where they’re failing. And there is no plausible deniability for manufacturers like there used to be, or, you know, other players in the supply chain. And some industries have remained pretty far behind, uh, because they, they had one huge margins, and two, this plausible deniability of mm-hmm. <affirmative> not being exposed or, um, have in the awareness of the consumer. So now that they are, since, you know what I’m gonna say, Scott, the great toilet paper shortage of 2020

Kevin L. Jackson (00:19:02):

<laugh>,

Greg White (00:19:04):

Now people know what a supply chain is and who the participants are, and who is really at fault in a lot of these, uh, situations. It’s very, it’s changed the dynamic for companies for a reason different than I think any of us expected. And that’s just simply the awareness of the consumer.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:19:23):

Well, supply chain always worked before, and when it didn’t work, it was like, oh, what’s that thing that’s not working now? <laugh>. Yeah.

Greg White (00:19:30):

Or it was, Hey, it wasn’t us, it was them.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:19:34):

Right?

Scott Luton (00:19:34):

<laugh>, right.

Greg White (00:19:35):

Three SCOs, episode one, me.

Scott Luton (00:19:39):

But so beyond to, so Greg, both, both of y’all made a lot of great points, Greg, to your point, it’s tough to, to dissect especially something as, as complex and as, uh, as ever changing as an automotive industry in span of, you know, seven minutes. The other interesting thing, beyond what Kevin and Greg shared here, and we’re seeing, uh, ventures and more vertical in integration, which in part is meant to address some of the supply chain challenges that industry’s going through. Ultium, for example, is electric vehicle battery. Uh, a company that’s a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solutions. Uh, hopefully getting GM ames that, uh, Ames, that venture to help them get around the constrictions they’ve seen when it comes to getting batteries. Uh, and get this, I, I missed this some, uh, whenever they announced it, GM has said it will produce only electric cars starting in 2024.

Scott Luton (00:20:31):

So we’ll see if that takes place. And then of course, on other side of the, uh, I’ll call it the American coin of American Automotive, Ford is investing in something they call Blue Oval City in Stanton, Tennessee. This is a 5.6 billion megasite. Uh, they Ford executives are calling it the biggest investment in a generation. Um, so who, we’ll see how that plays out. But, uh, Greg and Kevin, the automotive industry, holy cow, a lot of folks will talk disruption, but man, they have been, uh, feeding that from the fire hose for years now, right, Greg?

Greg White (00:21:05):

Yeah. I just hope Ford can get blue ovals to their blue oval city. Cause that was

Kevin L. Jackson (00:21:11):

<laugh>,

Greg White (00:21:12):

That was that particular thing is what held up the delivery of tens of thousands of F 50 s.

Scott Luton (00:21:18):

Right?

Kevin L. Jackson (00:21:19):

Unbelievable. I didn’t know about

Greg White (00:21:21):

That. I cannot remember who, I’m sure a thousand people have said this, but the person that pointed it out to us just thought this was brilliant. How many parts does it take to make an F150, <laugh>, all of them.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:21:35):

<laugh>

Scott Luton (00:21:37):

Love

Kevin L. Jackson (00:21:37):

That. Every part in the world, right?

Greg White (00:21:40):

<laugh> all of the parts that it takes. Yeah.

Scott Luton (00:21:42):

Well, and there’s some interesting discussion, uh, beyond kind of going back to the ev. Uh, so Greg says, the state of Wyoming is set to pass resolution to ban all electric vehicles by 2035. That’s interesting, Tom, the

Kevin L. Jackson (00:21:56):

Ban

Scott Luton (00:21:56):

That’s gonna be reversed. Okay. Uh, so we, we’ve got all kinds of, um, parties and positions on this whole ev movement. Uh, what a fascinating time that we live in, for sure. Um, okay, Greg and Kevin. I’m gonna leave that there though, cause we gotta unpack, uh, something that’s also very universal, and that’s sneakers, right? <laugh>. So, uh, talking Nike. So Nike has learned a thing or two, uh, when it comes to some of the omnichannel dos and don’t, so Kevin, start us out here.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:22:29):

So, so first I wanted to, uh, recognize, want everybody to recognize the shift, right? We’ve gone from automotive to retail. And the reason is because in retail, this, uh, this month, January, New York City is the N R F big show, uh, which is the largest, uh, uh, retail, uh, blowout, uh, of the year. And, um, they’re really talking about the theme is, is breakthrough. And, uh, I’m just doing a shameless plug for an interview I’m gonna do later. This, uh, <laugh> this month, uh, with Sandra Campos, um, and, uh, uh, IBM m partner Mark Meister. Cause they’re talking about how the retail industry is really adopting technology. Uh, so I want these next, this next ship, this next article in Nike is Retail and Omnichannel Inventory Management. And some of the challenges they ran into, in fact, at the end of 2022, Nike had a, a, uh, huge, they called it Epic Inventory Glut.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:23:51):

Um, and they had to stay this global fire sale of sneakers, and they blamed it on ordering by retailers and faster than usual deliveries, which this is in, in, in 2022, right? Um, and it would, they were talking about how it highlighted the challenges faced by retailers trying to run this omnichannel, uh, model, being able to do, you know, brick and mortar and e-commerce and, you know, ordering online, pick it up in the store. Um, so Nike, their inventory was, um, was up 44% across the entire company. And that was driven by a, a 65% hike in North America, which is their largest market. And many closed retailers are experiencing this sort of a, a, a whip saw watching inventory pile up as, uh, inflation hits and consumers actually, uh, reduce their spending. So, so Nike is kind of reevaluating its entire partnership model. Um, uh, they have, you know, partnerships with Footlocker and JD Sports and, and others, uh, to try to better manage the inventory challenges while extending its reach to customers, uh, via the, you know, retail and wholesale model.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:25:38):

So what they’ve learned is that your systems have to be flexible to evolve as new channels open and sources dry up, you know, understanding your supply chain. And then there’s gonna be brand new selling platforms, new marketplaces, and, and new e-commerce front ends that need to be integrated, um, into your entire process. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Um, second, they realize that you have to be connected right in real time to all of the viable sources of inventory so that you can know of one shuts down, you can know what your alternative is. Uh, and this can only be done with web-based IT services. Um, and finally, your supply network needs to have deep knowledge of both the product and the sources of supply so that you can reach out to the most suitable option based upon the customer’s location, timing, and legal or legislative, uh, requirements because the laws are changing, uh, quickly. So retailers nearly really need to understand the value of data and realtime information as they are, you know, putting out these new omnichannel models, connecting that front end with the customer to the backend of supply chain and sources.

Scott Luton (00:27:31):

All right, Greg seems like omni channel that’s been around forever and we’re making some of the same mistakes. Seems like time and time again. Your thoughts, Greg?

Greg White (00:27:38):

Yeah, I think that that is, that’s a re that’s an excellent <laugh> condensation of this discussion is first of all, the retailer, not the problem. I, I mean, brands who are ho who have gone into retail are the problem because retailers, the, the problems that Nike is, is facing here. Retailers solved 30 years ago, literally, I worked with retailers who had this problem solved 30 years ago. Um, part of the problem is the dramatic shift in business model that Nike has had to undertake, because Nike was, especially in the shoe and the apparel industry, they were the big dog, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So they mandated, they did what was called allocating to, to their, their retail partners. You didn’t even get a choice. They told you what you were gonna get if you were Sporting Goods, or, you know, or, or whomever, right? They said, you get more of this and these, and they pre-picked size ranges, which shoes, right?

Greg White (00:28:41):

In what colors and what size ranges you got. They were called a dealer pack or, or a vendor pack. It depends on, you know, the terminology. Yeah. Um, and they just told you what you were gonna get. So this, what Kevin is describing is a dramatic shift, and they made it too fast. They really thought they understood retail and that they understood omnichannel. And frankly, for decades, companies like, like Nike, that the big brands have been trying to figure out how to disintermediate the retailers and go direct to the consumer. What they don’t understand is that the risk and the volatility is dramatically different when you’re sending ones and twos to people instead of tens or thousands to people. And, um, it is an absolute shock to their system. Now, I’m not saying that the retailers are infallible here, but largely the problem that’s described in, in this, in this, uh, article, they’re talking about some of of their own stores too, that are doing them dirty.

Greg White (00:29:44):

Not just Footlocker and not just exporting goods and some of these others, but their own retailers because they aren’t even connected enough to their own retail outlets to know, and they leave too much to the discretion of the store managers. And because they’re used to managing to ship in big, big shipments rather than understanding the consumer, Kevin, as you were talking about, right? Yeah. It’s so critical to understand when and, and, and where and how, and what those consumers are gonna buy. They have no frame of reference. So, um, re again, retail’s not infallible there, but it’s a particular lift for, for these brands as they try to go into omnichannel and facilitate omnichannel themselves. And remember, Nike didn’t mess around. They went right. They went from shipping to retail to customized shoes. I have one daughter who bought a pair of completely customized Nike shoes. Now that is an incredible leap to, to do that. It’s a great marketing scheme, but it’s, it’s very difficult transition for where Nike was coming from as a, as an inventory management, um, and demand management provider. That’s

Scott Luton (00:31:02):

Right. That, that’s, that’s that leap making that leap is kinda like trying to dunk from the free throat line. Like only a handful of folks could ever do the history of the game. Um, all right. Well, Greg and Kevin really appreciate, uh, both of y’all’s, uh, commentary there and what’s going on at Nike. Um, I’ll just tell you, I did a quick pulse of, um, our, uh, consumer c e o here, at least that makes all of our purchasing decisions <laugh>. And now’s the time to get some Nikes folks that, uh, epic Inventory glu, which is how the article phrased it. Is it real? And that 65% number year over year at the end of the court last quarter here in North America. Yeah, man, it is, uh, they’re settlement hotcakes, right, Greg?

Greg White (00:31:42):

Well, into Kevin’s point, it is the, it is the whiplash effect inaction in, in spades. I mean, you know, the retailers started responding to the growing lead times from Nike just about the time Nike got their, got their manufacturing facilities to deliver on time and <laugh>, that’s, you know, that’s a huge impact to the supply chain. So

Kevin L. Jackson (00:32:07):

It went from huge shortage during the pandemic, and then, uh, everybody wanted to buy, right? And then now we don’t have any money because we’re going into a, you know, recession. Right? Um, you know, you really need to know the, the, the customer where, where they are, how they feel.

Scott Luton (00:32:26):

Agreed. That’s right.

Greg White (00:32:28):

Reach that. And you need to know what it’s right now, seriously, you need to know it right now. Part of the problem with retail and manufacturing is that we don’t do forecasting. We do post casting. We look at history and expect that history to be a representation of the future. And when has that ever been the case? Never. We had to do it in the old days because we had no data that was any better than historical data to tell us what the future looked like. But now there is a way to understand and predict consumers, or even the individual consumer, and when and where and what they’re ready to buy. We have to start looking forward.

Scott Luton (00:33:07):

That’s right. All right. We need to, we need to create a course. Greg White on real, getting to know your customers real time. Seriously. We, we, well,

Greg White (00:33:15):

I mean, Kevin too, Kevin should teach that. He just mentioned that. And, you know, and I think that is an excellent point. We really, it’s easy. It’s, I think it’s easier, Kevin, maybe even for you to have that perspective than it is those of us who’ve been told all these supply chain fallacies, like the, like the, the falsehood that ERUs paribus all other things being equal, which of course is never the case, never

Scott Luton (00:33:40):

A case, right? <laugh>

Greg White (00:33:42):

Monologue earlier. Um, but also these falsehoods that history is any indication of the future, absolute falsehood. That’s not why we use history. We simply use history because no better data was available back in the 1860s or 1903 when, by the way, a lot of these forecasting techniques were created. So now that there is better data, we need to make that transition, Kevin. Okay. Get out front.

Scott Luton (00:34:07):

<laugh>. Yes, sir. <laugh>. Well, uh, we’ll have to, uh, so Kevin, that’s a, sounds like a challenge to me. So, uh, Greg and Kevin saves the world coming to, uh, a theater near you. Um, hey, really quick, uh, folks, don’t take our word for it, y’all go check out the article. We dropped the link to each of these news stories in our chat. Let us know what your take is. We’d love, we’d welcome that. Um, and Hello, gene pleasure. Good old gp. Great to see you here. Our Gino, we should say Greg and Kevin Gino.

Greg White (00:34:37):

Yeah, that’s right. We get to call him Gino now, right?

Scott Luton (00:34:40):

That is right. Rock and roll drummer and supply chain practitioner. Great to see Gino, uh, Islam says, and great to say, see you here via LinkedIn says, more agile supply chains are the more successful omnichannel inventory control, they will be Islam. Great, great point there and great to have you here with us today. Need that feedback. That’s right. Keep, mm-hmm. <affirmative>, keep that feedback coming. And, and Tony Hahn says, Hey, great points, Greg. Keep it coming. Tony, great to see you here via LinkedIn. Yeah,

Greg White (00:35:07):

Thanks Tony.

Scott Luton (00:35:08):

He’ll keep making more. Keep, uh, keep consuming it. And Greg White makes more. Um, there’s a, there’s a old eighties commercial somewhere there. I crispy Kre or Dunking Donuts or something. Hopefully

Greg White (00:35:19):

Crispy

Scott Luton (00:35:20):

<laugh>, making everybody hungry. Again. I wanna share Greg and Kevin, uh, a really quick announcement. And we talk about this a lot. We’ve been supporting this for going back, I think seven, eight months is when it initially launched. This is our leveraging logistics for Ukraine ongoing initiative. Uh, or the next monthly planning session is February 7th at 11:00 AM Eastern Time. Greg and Kevin, lemme tell you, I was just, I sat in on, uh, the last planning session for this. Hmm. And, uh, it, you know, it, it, there is work being done. However, they’ve been bringing in guest speakers, um, that really tell some very powerful perspective. And I’m gonna get this gentleman’s name wrong. Uh, Brut Brad, I think is his name. It’s his nickname. And this is an American that’s in far East Ukraine. And he is helping Marshall Resources, you know, uh, moving people, helping people, helping lots of the pets.

Scott Luton (00:36:14):

Cause there’s a ton of dogs and cats and that, that, you know, their owners, um, unfortunately are not no longer there. And he was telling some of what he sees firsthand in this planning session, and it was, it was, you know, stopping your tracks type of perspective. So folks, um, if you’re not in position to help out the initiative, hey, no worries, just show up, be present, soak in the information and perspective. That’s, that, that, um, is, is is shared and distributed here. And the next planning session, again, February 7th, 11:00 AM Eastern Time. And we have dropped that link in the comments, Greg, uh oh, really quick, updated number. Yeah,

Greg White (00:36:51):

That’s, I was gonna ask.

Scott Luton (00:36:56):

675,000 pounds of humanitarian, uh, aid has been shipped as a result of just this effort. So, wow. And over, over 2000 letters have been delivered, uh, handwritten by, um, kids and folks here in states to school children, primarily in Ukraine, you know, uplifting messages that, uh, you know, uh, just, this may sound simple, but very, very powerful. So kudos to Vector Global Logistics, love their leadership. All the folks have supported. Uh, Greg, your quick comment on this ongoing initiative,

Greg White (00:37:30):

That’s 338 tons people. That’s a lot. That is a lot of good <laugh>. Um, so thank you to everyone who’s contributed to that. Um, look, I mean, this is, this is gonna go on for a while. I still don’t understand why <laugh>, but it, I mean, I think this is gonna continue to go on, but, um, so, you know, just keep it in the forefront of your mind. It continues to impact global, global commerce and supply chain and real human lives every single day. So,

Kevin L. Jackson (00:38:06):

Yeah, I know, um, over the weekend, um, uh, I don’t know if you look at Farid Saria on, on cnn, but, uh, on his show on Sunday, he actually interviewed, uh, Elena Zelensky, the, the wife of the president, um, uh, Valla, Zelensky of, uh, Ukraine. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And she was talking about, he asked the question, you know, well, uh, what are the women doing now that, you know, all the men are at, at the, at the front? And she was talking about how women were taking care of the, uh, home front. You know, I don’t wanna sound sexist, but you know, the women were taking care of the children and women were making sure that the, uh, children were, were teaching the, the, um, uh, women were, uh, uh, trying to make life normal, uh mm-hmm. <affirmative> for the families as normal a a as they could.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:39:09):

And it was really, uh, incredible some of the efforts that were being driven by women because the, the men were at the front. And she talked also about the fact that over, uh, 4 million or 5 million people were displaced. Um, and as many as 4 million are actually left the country. Um, and, uh, and it’s the, it was the mothers and the grandmothers that are keeping the logistics lines open, uh, a across the, the family. Uh, and, uh, that’s a, that’s a very important job that is underappreciated. You know, when you just keep talking about the, the front lines, I mean, this thing is going to, you know, be over. Uh, it’s not gonna go on forever. And one of the things you mentioned was that trying to tell the kids that it, it is valuable for you to still go to school. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you still need to go to college.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:40:20):

You still need to prepare for the future, because what’s happening now is, is temporary and you will have a, a, a different life. Um, so it’s the women that are protecting the future of, uh, Ukraine. Mm-hmm. I mean, the, the, I mean, the, you know, most of the men, there are a lot of women at the front lines. Also, I saw this story about this woman sniper. She’s like the number one sniper, uh, in the Ukrainian, uh, military. And I mean, they’re doing what needs to be done now, uh, the military in the front lines, but the, the, the mothers and the grandmothers in, in, in the rear Mm, are are really protecting the future of the society. And that’s an important job. That’s a critical job. Oh,

Greg White (00:41:11):

Yeah, absolutely.

Scott Luton (00:41:12):

You know, Kelly Barner and I have spent a few months, uh, uh, Kelly, of course, of, uh, dial P for procurement and our procurement and buyers meeting point fame, uh, rocker roll star. Uh, Kelly and I interviewed a procurement practitioner, uh, that was from Ukraine and, and had to evacuate and man her testimony of what she had to endure. But to your point, Kevin, Greg, you touched on this, they continue to lead, right? They find a way. Uh, Amanda and Catherine, if y’all can find the, um, link of the episode, that would be, uh, a great replay here in 2023. Um, okay. Well, let’s keep, let’s keep moving, uh, on a much, much lighter note. Uh, we’ve got this story here, and Greg, this was part of, of your ever popular, uh, supply chain commentary every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday on LinkedIn. Y’all check that out. You touched on, uh, fashion brand mango as reported by supply chain dive. Hey, it’s betting big on supply chain transparency and using it to help push its sustainability efforts forward. Greg, tell us more.

Greg White (00:42:14):

Yeah, a lot, a lot of companies have been trying to do this for a lot of years, and I just thought this was a great, a great example because of a couple things. One, a relatively new company, mango’s only 10 years old, and two, they’re in the fashion industry, which is, uh, by far, by far the biggest contributor to social injustice and environmental impact in, in the retail trade. Um, just unconscionable some of the things that happened to ha have our clothes made and and shipped to us even just getting the cotton for them. You know, anything from slave labor in Xinjiang province to intentionally underpaid people in various countries around the world, Bangladesh and other places. There are report hundreds, thousands of reports there. Mango is trying to do the right thing by creating supply chain transparency, which for them in their case means identifying their every one of their top three tiers of sup of suppliers.

Greg White (00:43:16):

Now, I don’t know how deep their supply chain goes, how many tiers it is, could be more. But, uh, that is an incredible undertaking and it’s, uh, very noble undertaking. Uh, you know, I’ve been studying this supply chains and their depth and breadth and impact in the combinatorial analytics that are required to manage those supply chains. Um, because all things are never equal. Um, and, and to Kevin’s ear earlier point, you need to understand all of those players and all of those complexities to be able to do anything. And what I’ve realized is that because of, of consumer awareness and government mandates like the, the US Securities and Exchange Commissions, scope one, two, and three emission standards, EU standards, and UK standards, that, um, understanding your, just your emissions I impact is now mandatory transparency is mandatory, and yet transparency is utterly impossible. So, uh, you know, what I talk about in that commentary is how companies can approach that.

Greg White (00:44:26):

Um, how some companies have done it to date that offer up the Mango article is a really good, uh, example, at least for a starting point. And, and talk about how critical this transparency is, but also the doing something with that transparency, not just pointing your finger and going, ah, gotcha, you’re polluted <laugh>, right? But being able to do something with it, because what is the point? I mean, unless you’re just an activist, what is the point of just pointing someone out as being, um, you know, unsustainable or, or you have having excessive carbon emissions? The point is being able to enable your supply chain, your commerce partners, to be able to, to perform in a more ethical or more sustainable method. And that’s what I talk a little bit about is how we’ll get to that next stage, how we’ll start to apply technologies throughout the supply chain, probably enabled from the top, from the brand or from the retailer, um, down to their, to their supply chain participants to allow them to recognize that, that they are polluters. Um, and then to help them alleviate that situation. Now, we’ll always have them there do wells, right? The people who are constantly dodging that, um, you know, that can’t, can’t do business legitimately, and, you know, and will constantly dodge that, but there are ways to attack that as well. It’s not worth going into that here. But, um, but anyway, that’s, that was what that really inspired me to think was how do companies make that happen because it is utterly impossible today.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:46:05):

Hmm. Yeah. Well, I think sustainability, sustainability is, is really the challenge about our age. And this is a, a, a, a great point to bring up that today is the first day of the World Economic Forum in Davos, uh, uh, for Davos 2023. It, uh, starts today, the 16th and goes through the 20th. And the, the theme is cooperation in a fragmented world. Mm-hmm. And one of the big areas they’re focused on is sustainability. Um, in, in fact, I mean, right, you, you think about sustainability, we just went through the, uh, the Christmas holiday and like, it was like, uh, you know, every week the trash, uh, truck comes down our street, you know, and they pick up the trash. And like for two weeks in a row, there’s just piles in front of my house of packaging material, <laugh>. Um, and it’s like, you know, why do I have to have big boxes, multiple boxes for a, uh, physically small item?

Kevin L. Jackson (00:47:16):

Uh, cause we’re all shifting, you know, I, I was thinking about, you know, we’re all shifting to e-commerce. What does that mean? Everything is getting shipped, shipped in boxes, and then plastic, and then wrapped it wrapped, and then it, you know, so, uh, the, the, the other thing is that these consumer goods, um, create so many, so much plastic waste, um, that companies like Park and Gamble and Coca-Cola are, are becoming targets for activism. Mm-hmm. Uh, be because the green groups are blaming them for fouling the oceans with plastics, uh, because of, uh, uh, a lack of, um, attention to sustainability. And, uh, they’re really pushing governments to regulate this, um, uh, this, this packaging, this packaging aspects. So, I mean, sustainability is, uh, if, if we, if we’re not sustainable, we’re going to lose our earth. And this is the only earth, this is the only home, uh, we have. Mm-hmm.

Scott Luton (00:48:35):

Uh, well said there, Kevin. And you know, Greg, we’ve talked about that time and time and time again, a ti wave of packaging. You and I <laugh>, I think I exchanged images from our families. Um, but one last thought, Hey, uh, little quick shoutout. Uh, of course, we’re all big fans of James Malley and cool things you’re doing at Packard. Uh, so y’all check that out. Um, also, we can’t, you know, cause of some of the recycling changes that have taken place in that, in that landscape the last couple years, of course, glass is not being recycled. It, theres, there’s gotta be some smart folks out there that can take glass, melt it all down, create some kind of, um, non-agile, uh, byproduct then, then we can use for packaging. I don’t know it, I hate buying anything glass these days cause you can’t recycle it. You know, they won’t even pick it up. Yeah, that’s a shame. Uh, it’s gotta change. But anyway, I digress.

Greg White (00:49:23):

Well, I mean, it used to be recyclable, didn’t it? But the economics didn’t work. So I think we have to acknowledge that people can’t do sustainability out of the goodness of their heart. They have to do it out of the wellbeing of their, of their economic situation. Look,

Kevin L. Jackson (00:49:39):

There has to be an economic model. Yeah.

Greg White (00:49:42):

The largest polluters in the world, by far relative to their population are, are underdeveloped countries except for China, though they’ve convinced everyone, they’re an un uh, undeveloped country. Um, <laugh>, you know, it’s India, it’s Indonesia, it’s company, it’s it’s countries like that. We have to enable and lift these people up to a higher standard of li of living to allow them to even care about sustainability. Because right now, so many people in Africa and, and Asia, all they care about is survival. And that’s really all they can care about is survival. You know, there’s the, there’s the, the hierarchy of needs, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you can start to have things like self-awareness and self-actualization once your basic needs are met. It’s a fact. And we, that needs to be a significant part of the sustainability initiative. I, I don’t know what we’re gonna do about China because they are bad actors as a nation. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I mean, not, not the people, the government. Um, but they are bad actors and there is no, there’s no reason for them to change because they control commerce. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, let’s face it, the last time they were threatened two times they were threatened at Cop 27 and Cop 26. They had, they had a, uh, blackout, strangely, they were low on power. And then at Cop 27, they just basically said, either call us a developing nation, or we’re cutting everything off <laugh>,

Kevin L. Jackson (00:51:12):

<laugh>. So,

Greg White (00:51:13):

Um, y you know, I don’t know what we do about China, but if we can clean up all the rest of it, did you know this, that a company, uh, a company’s, uh, 92% of a company’s emissions are from their supply chain?

Scott Luton (00:51:28):

Wow.

Greg White (00:51:29):

So initiatives like what you’re talking about, like packaging better or packaging more efficiently, or cutting the length of roots, or, you know, not shipping air when we can avoid it, things like that. All of those things cut the number of trucks and ships and aircraft in, you know, around the planet. Yeah. And, and there are all kinds of things that we can do that are, by the way, economically neutral or maybe even economically beneficial to, to these companies to allow them to reduce their, their, um, emissions. But it is going to come down to economics, and it’s not going to come from the goodness, particularly of a company’s heart because a company is not a human. Mm-hmm.

Scott Luton (00:52:14):

Right?

Greg White (00:52:15):

It’s still of humans. Right. But a company has it, it has other obligations, you know, in addition to obviously being a good citizen of the planet. Um, so Right. We have to make it economically feasible and there is a way to do it. It’s not a zero sum game. I don’t care what any politician says.

Scott Luton (00:52:35):

<laugh> <laugh>. Well, and, and Tom makes a good point here. Hey, Davos and sustainability. Great. Just don’t mention all the private jets <laugh>.

Greg White (00:52:44):

Right, exactly.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:52:46):

Everybody

Greg White (00:52:46):

Flying in on private jets and talk

Kevin L. Jackson (00:52:50):

To, talk, to talk about the sustainability.

Scott Luton (00:52:52):

Yeah. Right. Uh, Catherine shares, uh, I can’t remember the company, but I recently got a package where the insulation was water soluble. You could just run underwater and it dissolves. I’m not sure the costs are impacted. That that’s a what a great idea. I hadn’t heard of that

Greg White (00:53:06):

One. Starch. So they were, so they do that with plastic bags in many countries. It’s, it’s, it’s not exactly plastic, but it’s a plastic light made outta cornstarch.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:53:17):

So, oh, cornstarch. I was about to ask, so what chemicals go into the Chesapeake Bay when I do that in my sink?

Scott Luton (00:53:24):

<laugh>? Well,

Greg White (00:53:26):

You’re gonna have a lot of fat fish,

Scott Luton (00:53:28):

Right? Uh, that’s great. Alright.

Greg White (00:53:31):

But, but look at it this way. If you fry ’em,

Scott Luton (00:53:34):

Oh man. It’s like

Greg White (00:53:35):

Feeding the mayo to the tuna

Scott Luton (00:53:37):

<laugh>.

Greg White (00:53:39):

If you fry ’em, they’re already breaded. Oh,

Kevin L. Jackson (00:53:42):

Bread.

Scott Luton (00:53:43):

Love that. Okay. So obviously the, um, deserves a fuller conversation, but I appreciate Kevin, Greg, both of y’all weighing in. We’re gonna wrap up on kind of a fun story here today. Uh, retail trends. So, uh, the folks over at r rs have identified a variety of 2023 retail trends, and, uh, Kevin, give us a few of your favorites from the ar glare.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:54:07):

Yeah, so this is really talking about a retail industry again, and it’s really bouncing back. 2022 is really marked by innovation across, uh, retail, where the, uh, retailers are going into immersive experiences, you know, with the, uh, uh, VR and IR in, in leveraging artificial intelligence and machine learning in order to automate the processes and increase their efficiencies. So, um, what, uh, for, so in 2023, what are the technologies that you as consumer are going to, uh, see as these omnichannel retailers are really reaching out to understand you better? So the first thing is data. Data, data. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> data is being increasingly leveraged to make real time decisions. That’s what, uh, Nike learned, right? Uh, the second thing is hyper-personalization. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, that’s a big area of focus. Okay. They need data about you so they can create a product or service that fits your life, your needs, uh, your expectations. Um, and, and finally, um, 15 20% of skews are going on camera. Right. They’re getting a video, uh, because you need to be able to see it if you’re gonna buy it off of the e-commerce websites and pictures is just not enough. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, so, you know, all of the skew items are becoming movie stars, <laugh>, so, so

Scott Luton (00:55:47):

Like Evan l Jackson, <laugh>.

Kevin L. Jackson (00:55:51):

So video is huge, um, uh, across, across retail so that you can feel comfortable buying it off the, uh, the e-commerce website. All that makes sense. Doesn’t makes

Scott Luton (00:56:06):

Sense to me. And, and Greg, I loved your, uh, Vogue, uh, you were doing a second ago. Uh, your thoughts on these retail trips,

Kevin L. Jackson (00:56:14):

<laugh>?

Greg White (00:56:15):

Yeah, I, I mean, as Kevin, as you’re talking about this, and as, as I read this article, I thought about the ways that I would like to share data with, with various companies I have for, and to go back to shoes, I can’t wear Nike shoes because at least in the past, they have not had, uh, shoes with high enough arches. So I wear asics instead. And, um, uh, you know, and I am a, I am what’s called a supinator. So some people, when they feet hit their, their ankles roll in like this, I, I put my heel down first. It’s hard to explain. It doesn’t matter. I push off, push off with the balls of your feet when you walk and you hit and you hit heat outside of your heel first you are a supinator. Um, pronators is the other option. Uh, anyway, I would like to be able to pick any kind of shoe and send them my in step and have them form an ins a, a custom in step for their shoes, custom

Kevin L. Jackson (00:57:14):

In step. Okay.

Greg White (00:57:15):

Right. Um, because shoes, personalization, I really like that I cannot wear. So I, I was thinking about those, those kind of hyper personalizations. I think the, that would be the ones that consumers value and will give access to are, um, are obviously hugely valuable. My concern, Kevin, and I’m curious what your thoughts here, uh, on this are, is mm-hmm. <affirmative>, will there be a distinction between the data you wanna share and the data, right? The data that you, that they capture. Because much like a website, have you given, have you given permission to use your data merely by walking in the store? Just like you have, just like you have by going on a website, will there be a, you know, something like that for a store? Some sort of acknowledgement?

Kevin L. Jackson (00:58:11):

The other question is in the fear is that, I mean, they put a lot of investment into hyper personalizing the product or service that they gives you to you so they can get the money outta your wallet. But how much have they invested in protecting that data that they’re collecting <laugh>? Cause as soon as you get in the data, the next next thing you know, it’s, you know, it’s on the, the dark web <laugh>. So, um, it’s, uh, it’s a, it’s a very tough, uh, tough issue right there. Slippery, there’s not enough investment in the protection of the data. That’s one thing. Second, there’s not enough, uh, laws on the books mm-hmm. <affirmative> to protect the data. The United States, for instance, does not have a national data protection law. You know, people talk about like GDPR

Greg White (00:59:01):

And eu, right?

Kevin L. Jackson (00:59:02):

Yeah. Like GDPR and the eu, we don’t have anything like that in, in the United States. We have some industry specific laws that are very specific on the type of data, but in general, in the United States, um, uh, a company can use your data for whatever they want to use it for, and they can. And if they lose it, there’s really no big penalties.

Scott Luton (00:59:22):

We gotta address that here in 2023. Uh, hey, really quick, uh, for, so from this r i s piece, uh, it talked about Stitch Fix, uh, and a customer survey data. Now they, they’re reporting at 90% of their customers prize quality apparel over quantity. And there’s a movement afoot. Y’all may have seen this in article too. I don’t know if it’s a thing or if they were just referencing it, but it’s called the intentional wardrobe, where consumers more and more are looking for high quality, flexible, multi-use clothing that is get this trend proof. So I can say I been ahead of this trend for years as my, uh, as a Mandy would, would, I would tell you

Kevin L. Jackson (01:00:02):

I wear the same thing for 20

Scott Luton (01:00:04):

Years. That’s right. Right. Mean

Kevin L. Jackson (01:00:06):

Prayers about fat <laugh>. How is

Greg White (01:00:08):

That? I wonder if they’ve ever sold clothes to guys before, because that doesn’t seem like such a revelation. Does it?

Scott Luton (01:00:16):

Not

Greg White (01:00:17):

Thet have to buy new clothes? I wouldn’t. Right.

Scott Luton (01:00:20):

I’m with you.

Greg White (01:00:21):

If they wear out, that’s when I, that’s when I get a new fashion

Scott Luton (01:00:25):

<laugh>. So, um, alright, well let’s wrap with a couple quick comments here. So, hey Leah. Luton enjoyed the buzz day. She says, for Martin Luther, uh, Dr. Martin Luther King, what he stood for. But here, get this. Leah says, Hey Greg, try ortha feet great shoes. And you can wear for 60 days. If you aren’t satisfied, then you can return it. She loves hers. How about

Greg White (01:00:46):

That? I’ll try that. Give back. And, and you know, there are places that will make you custom insoles, or I think they call ’em orthotics. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And then you just pull the old ones outta your shoes and put it, put that in your shoe. Okay. The difference being the varying widths and et cetera, right? Mm-hmm.

Scott Luton (01:01:05):

<affirmative>. Well, maybe, yeah, maybe that can be fixed with Tony’s comment. Perhaps when we print shoes for personal use, you’ll get your wish. Greg <laugh>. Yeah. So, uh, who knows? Uh, Tony also a big fan of data protection. Uh, uh, point, Kevin, you just made excellent point there. And Catherine says, Hey, yes. Or a capsule wardrobe where all the pieces go together and are more classic trends. That’s a great idea.

Greg White (01:01:29):

They’re animals.

Kevin L. Jackson (01:01:31):

<laugh>, <laugh>. Yeah. As long as they have their right. I, I dunno, giraffe with the giraffe. Yes.

Scott Luton (01:01:36):

Ash

Greg White (01:01:37):

Giraffe together. Yeah.

Scott Luton (01:01:39):

Love that. Um, all right, well, Greg and Kevin, what a great hour’s going by so fast. Uh, folks, all the loves on time. This a smile

Kevin L. Jackson (01:01:47):

Already.

Scott Luton (01:01:48):

Geez. Can you believe that? Um, here, I want, this is how I wanna wrap. I know we’re a minute or two over, but this is a course, uh, a special day and a day. You know, when I, what we were sharing over the weekend is that, you know, one day is not enough. I, for one, really appreciate the focus that at least Martin Luther King Day, uh, Martin Luther, uh, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day brings. But as we all know, we, we gotta, we gotta honor what he stood for all year round. So, with that said, I wanna wrap with this. I wanna get Kevin and Greg both to issue a challenge to all of our listeners out there when it comes to leadership and leading like Dr. King. Um, if both of y’all could issue a challenge to audience, and Greg, I wanna start with you when it, when, as we wrap up here, what is one challenge when it comes to leading like Dr. King that folks should keep front and center?

Greg White (01:02:38):

Uh, well, I, I think back to one of his sermons at Dexter Avenue Church, um, where he said, don’t let, uh, bitterness and anger, um, from your real or perceived sufferings or injustices, do not let those, um, drive you. Maintain your forward motion to Kevin’s point before, maintain moving forward. Internalize that, fight it internally, rise above it, and, and build yourself up in spite of it. It, it can be done. It has been done by many, many people. And I, and I, I really, honestly, that was probably, uh, as big for me, not <laugh>, not black obviously, but born poor, dirt poor. Um, and you know, the way the socioeconomic levels in any country work is everybody who wants their level and they don’t want anybody new coming up from the bottom. So, uh, re by the way, in my experience, regardless of race, color, or creed, or what a nice guy you are, um, <laugh>, but, but I think that has been, that sort of man mantra has served many, many people, including Dr. King himself very well. Of course, he was angry, and of course he was bitter, and of course he didn’t, he felt that he was being, you know, suffering injustice every single day, I’m sure. But he didn’t let that deteriorate his actions and deteriorate his understanding of how you move forward and how you move up. And I just thought, I just think that that is so, so important that it’s so important to fight yourself as much as fight the injustice.

Scott Luton (01:04:25):

So, we’ll said Greg. Uh, Kevin.

Kevin L. Jackson (01:04:28):

So one of the, uh, my favorite m l k quote is that our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter. So I challenge you never to be silent about things that matter. A a, a leader, a transf transformational leader has to be driven by a set of inner values. Okay? That drives a courage to stand up in front of adversity and to do the right thing, especially when no one is watching. Our, our convictions and our emotional commitment that we, we feel to something bigger than ourselves has to be paramount. Mm-hmm. That’s, that those create the moves that inspire others. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So don’t be silent about things that really matter.

Scott Luton (01:05:34):

Well said. I love, I love that we wrapped on this. Uh, so Greg and Kevin, thank you both so much and thank you for spending some of your time here on this very special day, uh, engaging this conversation. And of course, all of our listeners around the world, uh, folks on, with all that said, um, it’s all about deeds, not words. Uh, to paraphrase, uh, Dr. King, uh, you know, if you can’t sprint, run, if you can’t run walk, if you can’t walk, crawl, but keep moving forward and doing for others. So with that said, ma, our entire team here on b Greg and Kevin, Amanda, Katherine, everyone behind the scenes, Scott Luton, challenge you to do good, to give forward and to be the change, go out and do something here today. With that, sit with you next time, right back here on Supply Chain now. Thanks everybody.

Scott Luton (01:06:15):

Thanks

Intro/Outro (01:06:16):

For being a part of our supply chain now, community. Check out all of our programming@supplychainnow.com and make sure you subscribe to Supply Chain now, anywhere you listen to podcasts. And follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on Supply Chain Now.

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Hosts

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

Greg White

Principal & Host

Kevin L. Jackson

Host, Digital Transformers

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

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

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Vicki White

Controller

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

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

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Allison Giddens

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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

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Greg White

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

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

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

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

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Karin Bursa

Host of TEKTOK

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

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

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

Mary Kate Soliva is 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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Jeff Miller

Host

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

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Amanda Luton

Chief Marketing Officer

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

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

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Billy Taylor

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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

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

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

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

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

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

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

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Katherine Hintz

Sales and Marketing Coordinator

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

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Ben Harris

Host

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

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Page Siplon

Host, The Freight Insider

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

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

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

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

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

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Alex Bramley

Sales Support Intern

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

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