Join hosts Scott Luton and Greg White as they welcome Mike Griswold, VP Analyst at Gartner, back for his popular monthly series, Supply Chain Today & Tomorrow.
In this episode, they discuss and analyze three crucial supply chain stories, covering the UAW strike and its impact on the automotive industry, Amazon’s fulfillment strategy changes, and sustainability efforts in the seafood supply chain by grocery chains.
Listen through to the end as these three experts wrap up with a reflection on a recent Eureka moment from their conversations with business leaders. Tune in for in-depth insights and analysis on these supply chain topics.
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 (00:32):
Hey, good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you’re Scott Luton and Greg White with you here on Supply Chain. Now welcome to today’s live stream, Greg, how are we doing?
Greg White (00:43):
Sliding in on two wheels. Barely made it, but you’ve been with us earlier this week, folks. You may have noticed I’ve had some technical challenges.
Scott Luton (00:51):
Well, you know what though, Greg, we are
Greg White (00:54):
Scott Luton (00:54):
Outright overcoming any technical challenge out there, and I think you look bright and brisk and sharp and vibrant, and that’s all
Greg White (01:04):
Scott Luton (01:05):
Adjectives I could come with. Greg,
Greg White (01:06):
That’s pretty good. Thank you. I appreciate that.
Scott Luton (01:09):
As usual, you’re testing my English ability. I feel
Greg White (01:12):
Great. I do feel great. But yeah, thank you.
Scott Luton (01:16):
Well, you should feel good at least for the next hour because we’re continuing one of our most popular long running series here, supply chain today and tomorrow with the one only Mike Griswold with Gartner. Now Greg, and as all of our regular listeners know today on today’s show, we’re going to be sharing a few developments across global supply chain, really across global business, and we’re getting Mike to weigh in with his valuable one of a kind take. Is that pretty accurate, Greg?
Greg White (01:42):
Yeah, yeah, of course, of course. I mean the great thing about Mike is he’s been there and done it and now he’s talking to hundreds, probably thousands of people a year who are still doing it either providing services or actually doing the supply chain thing, mostly in retail, which is so fascinating, so risky. So yeah, he’s the voice of the industry man.
Scott Luton (02:09):
So usually I get to hang out with the smartest person in the room. Now I get to hang out with two of the smartest people in the room with Mike and Greg. So stay tuned folks. We’re going to talk about the automotive strike we’re going to talk about and some of what’s to come there. We’re going to be talking about seafood transparency and provenance, really, Greg, one of your favorite words and a whole lot more. So stick around and let us know what you think. So drop your comments in the chat. Love to share those throughout the session. Alright, Greg, before we have Mike join us, we got a couple of resources that we want to share with folks, right?
Greg White (02:43):
Yes, as far as I know,
Scott Luton (02:45):
As far as kind of flying blind today. Okay, so Greg, as we talked about on the buzz on Monday, and folks join us every Monday at 12 noon eastern time for the tip of the spear in terms of supply chain, business news across the globe,
Greg White (03:01):
The most popular show in supply chain.
Scott Luton (03:04):
Yes, Greg, absolutely
Greg White (03:05):
By a long shot. So says whoever says that Chartable and those other folks that tell everybody how podcasts do
Scott Luton (03:14):
More than a knows we’re winning the race more, much more than via notes, but folks check out. With that said, it’s our LinkedIn, primarily LinkedIn and email newsletter. We dropped it over the weekend. We had a Halloween theme, but we featured on a lot of news that might be in your blind spot and including some great perspective and takes. And Greg, as we talked about the other day, each week as we drop this in, with that said, you’ll get the week’s upcoming live events. So Greg, it serves as a great reminder for folks that want to jump in and plug in and be a part of those, right?
Greg White (03:47):
It is, and this one was really interesting. It was a ton of kind of catching up on news and additional news that we don’t necessarily get to touch base on throughout the week. So yeah, I like it. I mean, there’s always something great in this thing. Come on,
Scott Luton (04:02):
Greg White (04:03):
Good. It really only takes seven minutes to read it, right?
Scott Luton (04:07):
That is right. Totally
Greg White (04:08):
Scott Luton (04:09):
Unless you’re a bot and it takes you about 12 seconds.
Greg White (04:12):
Scott Luton (04:14):
All right, speaking of upcoming live events, especially for informative data-driven events, that’s going to make you smarter. Check out our live event tomorrow where we’re going to be rejoined once again by Bobby Holland over at US Bank and a practitioner from the transportation industry, and we’re going to dive into the third quarter freight payment index for 2023. Greg always informative, great discussions here.
Greg White (04:39):
What I really love about it is Bobby’s dynamism and what he brings to, I mean Bobby, he is the ultimate analyst and he can tell you, I mean he can break it down right there on the show and he does. And then the rest of us kind of translate that into what it means for doing business day to day. So
Scott Luton (04:57):
That is right. That is
Greg White (04:59):
All the facts. That’s Bobby,
Scott Luton (05:02):
Right? Hey, and you got to have it. And I love how we marry that with the executive practitioners out there, practitioner living it, and sometimes the views line up and agree and other times they disagree and we lean into all of it, right?
Greg White (05:16):
Yep, no doubt. And it’s winter and we had this massive whatever front move across the US about three quarters of the US as a matter of fact. So Bobby lives in upstate New York. I cannot wait to hear if he’s covered in snow already.
Scott Luton (05:32):
We’re going to get a weather update on the front end of
Greg White (05:35):
Tomorrows session on the front end, yes. What does Syracuse or thereabouts look like
Scott Luton (05:40):
To make it even easier? We’ve dropped the links to both of those resources. With that said, and the live one, click away from checking those out in the comments. Now folks, I am pleased to, once again, Greg and I both are on our team to once again bring one of the best hours and global business discussion on the air, on the stream, on the digital today. Thank you, Greg. Little background, news, music. So join me in welcoming Mike Griswold, vice president analyst with Gartner.
Greg White (06:11):
Scott Luton (06:12):
Hey, Mike. How you doing?
Mike Griswold (06:14):
Hey, I’m doing well, thanks. November and Syracuse. Yeah, there’s going to be snow.
Greg White (06:19):
Is there? Really?
Mike Griswold (06:20):
Oh yeah. Oh yeah.
Greg White (06:21):
You got caught off guard here.
Mike Griswold (06:23):
That’s one of the reasons I avoid Syracuse. The golf season is way too short.
Greg White (06:27):
Oh, right, I’m sorry. That’s right. You’re from
Mike Griswold (06:29):
November. Yeah, it’s way too short. Great basketball, Syracuse Orange. But yeah, the weather can be problematic from November to even April, which just is bad.
Greg White (06:41):
I got snowed on in June in Detroit once.
Mike Griswold (06:44):
Scott Luton (06:45):
Greg White (06:46):
Scott Luton (06:49):
So let’s think of warmer and prettier perhaps locales
Greg White (06:56):
Scott Luton (06:58):
That’s really nice. That fits that category, Greg. But hey, Mike and Greg, it’s world vegan day. It’s National Vinegar Day. Don’t laugh, I don’t know about y’all. I love red wine vinegar and balsam vinegar and it’s even get this national cook for your pets day. Amanda, no stories, don’t share any stories back there. And as always, big thanks to Amanda and Catherine behind the scenes helping to make it happen. But on Friday, Greg and Mike and beautiful sunny San Diego, California. It’s the annual San Diego Beer Week event, which kicks off Friday. It’s like 10 days, 10 day long celebration, honoring America’s finest independent craft brewers. Now, Greg, don’t roll those eyes. This is just what I’m gathering from the promoters perhaps due to all the craft breweries in the area. Some call the San Diego region, the capital of craft about that now. So with that background, I would like to know each of y’all’s, and let’s start with Mike, the safer bet here, one of your favorite, perhaps lesser known beers or adult beverages.
Mike Griswold (08:02):
Yeah, I’m not a huge beer guy, particularly on the craft side. For me, the go-to drink is an old fashioned, having those for a couple of years and I’ve actually, I make my own at home when I’ve had a particularly bad day. The one element that I haven’t perfected yet, and if you like old fashioned, one of the nuances, there’s a couple places that I go that make a smoked old fashioned where they basically can put the glass in a bigger canister that they then smoke with hickory or some other type of wood. If you ever find yourselves in Vegas and dining at Hell’s Kitchen, they have a fantastic smoked old fashioned that comes out thing that looks like a big, almost like an old carriage lamp that is filled with smoke. I’m trying to figure out if my wife let me, how I can smoke things at home. But yeah, my go-to is an old fashioned.
Scott Luton (09:01):
Alright, so Greg, come to you next. Hey, today’s age smoking things at home mean a whole bunch of different things there. Mike Gregory, what are your favorite go-to adult beverages or cracker?
Greg White (09:14):
Well, lemme just comment on the symmetry of vegan and vinegar day because both of them make your face kind of go yes, and you’ll never doubt that either one is what they are because they’ll always tell you, yeah, I actually do love beer, but not IPA. The reason that people make IPA is because it’s cheap and easy to make. I prefer beers that actually take craft to make a lot of the laggers and some of the other heavier beers. And this time of year particularly, I love stouts because they’re thick and they’re made for cold weather and they’re made to be meals or sometimes a lot of Belgian beers are very, very mealy. So they’re delicious this time of year.
Scott Luton (10:02):
Okay man. Well both of y’all may have me beat, I don’t know. So one of my go-tos that and man and I really have
Greg White (10:08):
Scott Luton (10:09):
The last couple of years, I’m also not one for too many craft beers, but I’ve got a bottle of this that we brought back from Cape Town and it’s Pinotage, it’s a nice red wine. It’s a Meritage like red wine and it’s not only just known as a South Carolina born and bred in South Africa, but in particular it’s a Cape Town thing and it is, I’ll tell you what, it is delicious. We may have drank more than I’d like to admit. In fact, I had a little bit this morning. Alright, so you did. Just kidding this
Greg White (10:38):
Bad drink it all day long.
Scott Luton (10:44):
Oh gosh. All right, Greg, Mike, we’re having too much fun. We got a lot to get to here today. Thanks for entertaining our fun warmup question and moving right along. I want to get into something that’s really dominated a lot of headlines over the last, I’ll call it two months or so, and that of course the automotive industry and the United Auto Workers strike. And yesterday though, good news, it depends on how you look at it. Probably yesterday, all with the news out yesterday that a tenant deal was struck between UAW and gm. All big three automakers that are targeted that have been targeted have now reached a tentative deal with the union pending a union membership vote on all three. Now, in fact, also reported yesterday by Axios and others on the heels of the UAW strike, Toyota has announced a pay raise for its factory workers, all of which, at least here in the states are non-unionized.
All of that brings us to this interesting read via the Wall Street Journal, which focuses on the costs of the strike on a variety of levels and the labor deals made cost for the automakers, cost for consumers. And that’s just the beginning. Perhaps now in a nutshell, the new labor agreements offer about a 25% general wage increase over the next four years. On top of that, Greg and Mike, the UAW was able to bring back the cost of living increases, which went away about 14 or 15 years ago. Additionally, the UAW scored things like higher pay for temp workers, the right to strike over plant closures. They even got solanis to agree to reopen a factory in Illinois that had been idled earlier this year. Two final points here, fresh off this historic victory as y’all might expect, Greg, as you and fearlessly predicted months ago, Sean Fay, the UAW say, they are now looking at aggressively pursuing labor organizing efforts at Tesla, Toyota, and Volkswagen who all have factors here in the US that aren’t unionized. I can’t say that word unionized. On a related note, interestingly enough, as car prices are will go up, according to Clark Howard, the average price for a new vehicle was $47,899 in September, which surprisingly, or maybe unsurprisingly was down about 0.7% from September, 2022. So a lot to unpack here. Mike Griswold, your thoughts on what we’re seeing, where we are and what lies ahead?
Mike Griswold (13:11):
Yeah, I will try to preface all of this by not trying to not insert my personal perspectives on unions, which probably would not be helpful for this discussion. But when the head of the union comes out and says, we squeezed every dime out of fill in the blank and is using that as a badge of honor, I think that is problematic. The cost of vehicles as you cited, is going to go up anywhere between eight and $900. Couple that with interest rates that have gone up, it will be very difficult or it’ll become more difficult for people to buy those brands of vehicles with just those two conditions. You look at other automakers that do not have the challenge of unionized workforce, the likelihood that their car prices are going to increase is less. So if you rung everything out of an organization and now you’ve set the organization up to struggle to sell new vehicles, which means less revenue. This I think we can classify as a, some people could classify this as a short-term victory for the workforce. To me, it is a long-term challenge for the industry
Scott Luton (14:29):
Mike Griswold (14:30):
You’ve already heard, in addition to the higher car prices, you’ve already heard the automakers talk about how they need to invest now in efficiencies, they’re going to invest in automation, they’re going to need invest in other technologies that is going to limit the workforce. It just is when you bring automation in, things will come out. And I think over the long-term strikes in those types of things are not the long-term answer in my view. If you think about it from a supply chain perspective, we’ve done a ton of research on frontline workers and I think there are probably things the auto companies could have been doing or could still be doing outside of the guidelines of the union around just more flexible work, doing things around, creating flexibility around shifts, bringing some more opportunities for the frontline workers to have more of a say around the work they do and how they work.
That’s what our research suggests. People with these types of associates need to have an employee value proposition for them, but I think it needs to be driven by the organization and not dictated to them, which is where we’ve ended up now by the union. So I think in the short term I saw in that article, jobs are now going to be pushing close to $80,000 a year. I’m not making a value judgment on whether those people should be making $80,000 a year. I think everyone needs an opportunity to make a living that can provide a good standard of living. However, I believe that these arrangements are not going to be helpful in the longterm for the auto industry and whether we end up here again in several years or whether we end up with companies struggling to sell vehicles because of these constraints. That’s the world we live in. And a lot of this last thought is a lot of this is outside of the control of supply chain. Now the supply chain has to react to this with things like automation and efficiencies. So to me it’s a short-term win. It’s not a good long-term outcome in my view.
Speaker 5 (16:49):
Well said. Alright, Greg, your take
Greg White (16:53):
Buckle up. This is why we can’t reshore nice things. This is what we’ve been talking about forever. This is why reshoring won’t work. It will never happen. And now I believe, as I’ve said for weeks while these negotiations and strikes were going on that the American worker has made their bed and they’re going to have to lie in it and that bed’s going to be at home alone while automation does their job because I don’t know if anyone here has ever worked in a union shop, but good work does not get done in a union shop. The nature of the relationship, that adversarial relationship, they have to bring in non-union workers to do the work that isn’t specifically, and I mean strictly and dogmatically defined in a union worker’s job because they will literally say, not my job and refuse to do it. So it’s an incredibly unproductive environment and there’s a limit to the amount of productivity you can get out of these people, and I guarantee you that they are not interested in being more productive simply because they’re being paid more.
So this will not end well for the auto workers. It will not end well for the auto companies and it will end with either automation, the destruction of at least one auto company, again, probably STIs for the fourth or fifth or hopefully final time, get those junky chryslers off the road anyway, and that if Chrysler gets off the road, that will hurt the transmission industry because every 70,000 miles a Chrysler needs a transmission. So that’s going to hurt other industries when Solanis comes off the road. So there’s a waterfall effect here. I don’t have a distinct opinion on this Scott, as you can tell, but I do think it is. This is an inflection point, right? And it’s not a good one. It’s not one that’s going to create an upward trajectory. It’s not one that’s going to make these companies more competitive because these union workers are not going to work harder.
They’re going to wait until the next contract and grind it out. They’re going to make sure that they get that cost of living increase every year and the first time something goes wrong, they’re going to strike. We’re creating false economies by opening plants that should not be open, but paying too much for jobs that could be done by automation and therefore they will be at some point. This is not unlike unfortunately, and oddly I think this is really odd, not unlike this contract term that they put in for the Hollywood writers where you can’t replace us with ai. That’s the next thing that will happen is you, the automaker will have to continue to endure our second rate work at low productivity levels at high cost because we’re going to put a phrase in the contract that DISA allows you from using automation to replace us. I don’t think that the automakers will stand for that. To Mike’s point, I think to Mike’s rational point, not my point, I think that this portends a strong future for even greater automation or offshoring or at least nearshoring, fringe, shoring, whatever of even American cars.
Mike Griswold (20:21):
Yeah, I think Scott Greg’s,
Greg White (20:23):
Mr. Glenn, I can’t see the comments. Sorry about that.
Mike Griswold (20:26):
Greg’s comment on Nearshoring, it’s like, well, we can’t have nice things. I mean it’s spot on, right? We’ve talked a couple times together around this idea of a China plus one strategy. Where are we going to go? Let’s just call it manufacturing and generate, because you’ve already heard, now you brought it up, Scott, around trying to push this unionization into other automakers, but let’s not kid ourselves and think it’s not going to get pushed into other industries. So this idea of a China plus one strategy, if we now take the US off the table because of these types of dynamics, your China plus one strategy now starts to get limited. And I think your China plus one strategy, we’ve talked in the past about things to keep in the back of your mind, natural resources, workforces. I think you now in your plus one strategy have to have in the back of your mind the likelihood of this type of organization activity, whether it’s government sanctioned organization activities, or whether it’s outside entities like the UAW or they’re equivalent. There’s a significant union presence in the supermarket industry, the United Food Workers Association, something like that, right? So your plus one strategy now, I think it’s a lot more complicated because of some of these dynamics.
Scott Luton (21:52):
Yeah, well said. And go ahead Greg.
Greg White (21:54):
I think the bright side on the other hand is that people, this is a false economy for people clinging to what is a dead kind of job industry. And they are of a generation that won’t be in the workforce for a tremendously great amount of time. So they’re trying to clinging for every dollar before they go into retirement and buy their 22 foot boat on Lake Michigan. Irritate me while I’m trying to ski. But I think that the inevitability of human beings not doing this work is not going to be caused by automation. It’s going to be caused by human beings who don’t want these jobs. As we’ve been talking about for three years, people are staying away in droves for manufacturing jobs. That might just be the saving grace because we have created these false economies because it’s my job. You can’t take my job and send it somewhere else, or you can’t take my job and give it to someone else. We don’t even want to go into my philosophy on my job, but nobody wants your job going forward. So once you get out of the workplace, then that job will be automated. They just won’t hire for it. So it’ll be, I think that could get the car companies back into competition if enough of these people retire by 2028 or so and they just don’t replace them with human beings, they replace ’em with automation, right?
Mike Griswold (23:23):
Scott Luton (23:24):
So as we move on, it’d be interesting to keep a finger on the pulse. As I’ve dabbled in the automotive industry when I was manufacturing the ripple effect through the supplier ecosystem as the pressure to find these savings, Greg was kind of talking about transmissions kind of tongue in cheek. It’s going to have a big ripple effect, so a lot more to come, but I appreciate Mike and Greg, both of y’all weighing in and folks beyond our word for it. Check out the link. We’ve got the link right here. My apologies, Mike, didn’t mean to cover you up there. Check out link one click away to give us your take on the situation. Okay, Greg and Mike moving from automotive to Amazon, Greg, two days in a row. Wait a second, what day of the week is this? This is Wednesday, right? The buzz was two days ago.
Alright, so two of the last three days we’re talking about the big A and talking about Amazon. Alright, so Amazon’s made some big shifts with its fulfillment strategy this year as reported by supply chain dive. The big A shifted its fulfillment network strategy from a single national fulfillment center in the US to eight distinct regional centers. Thus far, the move has seemingly paid off handsomely amongst the benefits gained. Amazon president, CEO, is it Andrew? Is it Jassy? I said it right? Chassis says shorter travel distances and fewer touches mean lower cost to serve, but perhaps most importantly, shorter distances and fewer touches mean that customers are getting their shipments faster. Now for prime customers chassis says they’re getting their stuff the fastest in the company’s 29 year history. Mike, your thoughts?
Mike Griswold (25:03):
Well, we’ve gone from kind of a squeaky story, the UAW to really to me a really good story. I mean when you put this in the link, I was really excited to talk about this. Now part of me was like, duh, Amazon, why did it take you so long to get to this point? But now that you’re here, it’s where all of our research has been pointing for the last couple of years is around these local regional fulfillment centers, right? There certainly I think are some inventory ramifications right now you’ve got inventory, potentially more inventory and more locations, which I think might make some people skittish. But if you think about what was in that story around improved responsiveness, improved cycle time, all of that kind of stuff around the customer experience, to me it’s fantastic. It does to me though, highlight two skillsets that organizations need to have. One is a skillset around network design. Again, I said somewhat tongue in cheek. I’m not sure why took Amazon this long to get to that conclusion,
But if in your organization you do not have some skill and some tools around network design and have a process to continually evaluate the configuration of your network through the eyes of your customers, you’re going to want to do that. And then Scott, you touched on at the end of your opening comments around cost to serve, right? That is a skill particularly in retail that we don’t see a lot of other industries have really gained a lot of expertise around cost to serve. And what I don’t mean about cost to serve particularly for our retail friends is it’s not just activity-based costing. It’s not just direct product profitability. It is truly understanding how much does it cost you to fulfill an order in store A versus store B, right? It’s that level of detail because once you know that you can make much smarter decisions around where to route orders. And to me those are two skill sets, cost to serve and network design. Amazon’s had for a while. And I think if people want to take advantage of this the way Amazon is and will be able to moving forward, those are two skill sets you need to have.
Scott Luton (27:31):
Well said Mike. Alright, so Greg, I’m looking forward to your take here on what Amazon’s up to.
Greg White (27:35):
I just think this is a specific nomenclature because Amazon has hundreds of fulfillment centers around the world. They are around the country. They have these things called delivery stations. They have automated, they have lights out where 14 people work in a million square foot facility. They have manual stations, they have all manner of these stations. So I’m not exactly sure what facility they’re talking about, but perhaps it was all distributed solely to this central location and then distributed to the spokes at some point. But
I’m with you. My response was maybe I thought they already had that, right? I mean, I applaud them because they have completely changed the industry. They didn’t invent one day delivery. There were companies well before that that were trying to do even same day delivery. One of ’em was called same day, but they have scaled it to an incredible level to where it is equated with them, which is impressive. I have to say, I’ve had a few disappointments lately and I am baffled as to why. And it’s just like no notice, just, oh, your thing that was supposed to be there today or tomorrow is coming three days later, two days later now. So I think me and Andy need to have a little discussion about that because right now I’m ordering a chunk of stuff from Amazon, so I’ll take that offline. But I think they are a great model, honestly.
And exactly what Mike said, they get so much consumer data and the consumer is really what you’re predicting not the products at all. And they do such good work with it to both define what and where their network ought to be or ought to land. And they’re kind of the north star for everyone who’s trying to do this. I often wonder, I mean as much as it goes against my grain, I often wonder why companies don’t just all use Amazon to distribute their stuff. It would just be so much more efficient. They have overbuilt their facilities specifically for the purpose of giving or providing services like their own to other companies. So it’s a really interesting thing. They’re always out front and they’ve got a huge advantage. They’re one of the most financially well-managed companies in the entire world and always have been even when they were a startup and even when they weren’t making money, their free cashflow and things like that are exceptional. And the other thing we have to remember, guys, is this is not their profit center. This is their lost leader. Their lost leader is billions and billions and billions of dollars in retail sales. They make all of their money, all of it on AWS, on the cloud.
Mike Griswold (30:31):
Yeah, I agree. As usual with Craig’s observation, it is a bit of semantics, which I think everyone knows. I’m not a huge fan of arguing semantics, but Greg is spot on there with this idea that it is, I think about to some degree the vocabulary because I have 15 miles away from me, they built two or three years ago a big Amazon fulfillment center. It’s probably not one of these eight, but I mean if you go back several years ago they had one large facility in 52 of the biggest US cities. So it’s not like they haven’t been doing it. Part of me thinks this is Amazon wanting to continue to educate the market around the capabilities they have as a supply chain. Maybe Greg, to your point, maybe as a way to start to plant the seeds around, let us be your fulfillment arm, right?
Greg White (31:29):
Yeah. Could be.
Mike Griswold (31:29):
Let us be your last mile type of partner and talking more about that. And I also think, let’s be fair around this, not all the press we read about Amazon is positive. So I think what they also might be trying to do is start to put some positive stuff in the bank for when we get the next story about how they treat their workers. Not the best,
Greg White (31:53):
Mike Griswold (31:53):
I’m also a big believer in giving them credit when, to your point Greg, around the excellence of their supply chain as a company with a part of the business that is not where they make all their money. It’s another great point, Greg. It’s not this part of the business, but it’s what, nine zeros probably, right? If I math right, at least nine zeros that happened on this particular part of the business.
Greg White (32:18):
And I think we have to acknowledge also that this is a company that got into logistics, whatever you want to call it, this aspect of the business in 2014. Why?
Mike Griswold (32:28):
Greg White (32:29):
Because the post office UPS and FedEx failed them during peak season. They said, we’ll do it ourselves. And they have done it and done it so much better than traditional parcel carriers, three pls, fulfillment companies, all of those, whatever you want to call ’em, that accumulation of services. They have done it so much better, particularly for themselves, but even for other organizations. And in a relatively short time, they have built one of the greatest supply chains in history.
Mike Griswold (33:00):
I mean, Greg, it’s amazing when you think about the head start that, I mean don’t get me started in the post office, but the head start that the post office had the head start, that UPS and FedEx both had
DHL and others that the head start that they had Amazon despite whatever, because I know Amazon can elicit some very visceral responses similar to Walmart in some people. But if you look at to your 200 14, they basically have nothing the post office had been around for, I would argue maybe too long, but it’s been around a while, right? Amazon’s fantastic at identifying something that’s not working and inserting themself into the ecosystem. And they’re also really good at things that don’t work. I think my wife was the last person that had the Amazon fire phone that didn’t necessarily work or the Amazon phone, whatever it was called that didn’t necessarily work out. But they’re really good at punting things that don’t work. So they are a great supply chain and there’s a lot we can learn from them.
Scott Luton (34:07):
Alright, I got to get word in. I got to get word in Greg and
Greg White (34:10):
Scott Luton (34:10):
Mike Griswold (34:11):
Scott Luton (34:12):
Alright. It won’t be the valuable analysis between that y’all just laid out this. Well, we should publish the last seven minutes or 10 minutes. It’s really good stuff
Greg White (34:20):
On Amazon. Good idea
Scott Luton (34:22):
Historically and what’s ahead and even maybe why they’re messaging that, which both y’all spoke to. Alright, it’s two quick thoughts. First off, maybe they dropped the term sinners as they were talking about the eight regional, maybe we call it the eight halls of justice or the eight fortresses of solitude. Something that makes it special and stick out. Greg, to your point about Dominic,
Greg White (34:44):
I like that.
Scott Luton (34:45):
Yeah, my son Ben
Greg White (34:47):
Will be eight folds of fulfillment
Scott Luton (34:48):
Or yes, great, right? Yes.
Greg White (34:52):
Caverns of fulfillment. Yes.
Scott Luton (34:55):
And then secondly, talking about how it could be messaging for what’s to come. Have y’all been tracking what McDonald’s has been doing in terms of raising the prices of food across the world, moving away from its dollar meal, which for years was you get like seven Big Macs and five fries and three cokes for a buck or something. That’s been some interesting trends when it comes to McDonald’s. And so we’ll see what’s to come with Amazon, what they could have been announcing that they maybe use this news as a counterbalance, but nevertheless, let’s keep driving. And Gina, great to have you here. Great conversation as always when Mike visits. Thank you for that Gina. Hopefully it’s okay when Mike’s not with us too, but I’m
Greg White (35:38):
Sure it’s, I’m sure it’s
Scott Luton (35:41):
Going back to the distance and cost of service and all that stuff. Peter Boley all night and all day. Great to have you here. Truth, we did an exercise not long ago keeping stock in Montreal versus Toronto. Cost of transport lanes one way versus the other made the decision clear.
Greg White (35:57):
Oh that’s interesting,
Scott Luton (35:59):
Isn’t it though? Alright, so for the sake of time, and again we dropped the story folks right here, one click away, y’all check it out, let us know what you think. But great takes here from Greg and Mike as always. Alright, moving right along. Now this is a bit, I think, Greg, we’ve talked about these things before. Certainly we talked about provenance on the front end, but I still believe this might get not enough attention out there in the world. We’re talking about a neat read via the supermarket perimeter. Interesting publication there. Tuna grouper and macros. Oh my. So we’re talking about how grocery chains are meeting customer demands for sustainability and traceability when it comes to the seafood supply chain. I can never say this business name. So y’all help me here. Is it a hold delays?
Greg White (36:46):
I hold, I hold, I
Scott Luton (36:47):
Greg White (36:47):
I hold Dell Hayes, but I hold is sufficient.
Scott Luton (36:51):
Okay. That brings to mind my constant and fastest on the wrong sable. That’s correct. I hold
Del Hayes. Alright, I hold Del Hayes. USA operates more than 2000 food stores and distribution centers nationwide. And in 2018 they kicked off an initiative to vet and audit all seafood products in their inventory. In partnership with the Gulf of Maine Research Institute. They have assessed more than 3000 products already. And another initiative give y’all several examples here, Iowa based grocer, Hy-Vee has published a complete list of fishing vessels that supplies a company with fresh, frozen and canned private label tuna. All part of an effort to identify and avoid any vessels directly associated with human rights and or labor rights concerns. And then finally, I’ve certainly been in plenty of publixes here, Lakeland, Florida based grocery. Publix is investing in initiatives such as automating the country of origin, labeling process, AK, a cool, as well as researching and investing in better ways to limit the unintended catches of ocean wildlifes.
When fishermen and folks are out there trying to catch one fish to catch all kinds of other stuff, how can we limit the catch of all that other stuff? So they’re investing in ways of looking at that. So all I think really cool when it comes to trying to meet the demand for more sustainability, more transparency and more traceability of what we eat and purchasing all. So Greg, I want to start with you this time I had to take that crab off. That crab was steering a hole at me. I felt, Greg, your thoughts on what we’re seeing here with these groceries? Groceries rather
Greg White (38:36):
Living in a fishing village, I have a great empathy for both fish and for the people who fish them. So what they’re talking about is what’s called bycatch, which honestly I love to learn about in the local restaurants. Shrimper big in Hilton Head and there is quite a bit of other fish caught with that. There are other ways to fish, but that’s the way that most fish is caught and it’s the nets that bring all that stuff in. So I think knowing where it’s from, knowing that it is what it is, because I’m going to tell you people, about 70% of the time that you think you’re eating scallops, you’re eating what’s called skate. And most people have been eating skate for so long when they eat scallops, it seems foreign to them. I’ll just tell you this, if it’s bigger than that, it’s not a scallop, it’s a skate. So there’s your public service for the day. But I think this whole notion of provenance and also how it’s caught and where it’s caught and by whom and how they treat the fish, the sea and the people is really important to know. There’s a lot of overfishing out there. Rarely, it’s very rare that it’s around. I mean it’s, what should I say, egregiously happening around North America a lot of times in the, let’s just say China Sea and areas around the Japanese and Chinese fisheries are for just, I don’t know what to say, tragic
Means of catching fish. But yeah, I mean I think that’s an important thing for us to know. The other nice thing is that all of this is kind of a natural progression because large companies also, they also have to be responsible for these company’s emissions and that the mere fact that they are connected to them helps them understand if these are good corporate citizens, generally, if they are good corporate citizens around sustainability, not just of the fish but of fossil fuels and things like that. But also around human rights, which is absolutely required in a lot of countries. Not in this us yet, but virtually everywhere else. And yeah, I don’t know, I just think it’s a good thing. I see a lot of, just on my beach, I see a lot of, I don’t know, offenses. So we have these things hermit crabs or not hermit crabs, I’m sorry, horseshoe crabs.
And I was invested in a mutual fund, not a mutual fund, an ETF that had this company, James River Company that does this just terrible way of fishing that kills too many of them and that sort of thing. And when they drag nets across ’em, when the shrimpers move inland a bit in the fall in September and forward, they tend to disrupt these horseshoe, sorry, yeah, horseshoe crabs quite a bit. And they’re those big crabs. You often see ’em look like they’ve got a hood on and they’re kind of rare and special creatures. They’re leftover dinosaurs. So that’s my litmus test do right by the horseshoe crab
Scott Luton (41:47):
And of course critical for the healthcare industry. Speaking of horseshoe crab, they’re trying to
Greg White (41:50):
Scott Luton (41:51):
Better ways of using its blood without killing the creature.
Greg White (41:54):
The best way, just as long as we’re on that topic, Scott, is that there are sufficient synthetics to handle the demand for that. But the James River Company has too much invested in using the blood of these crabs. So they have these have all this government intervention to allow ’em to continue to do the business by using the crab’s blood rather than creating the synthetics like competitive companies are doing.
Scott Luton (42:17):
Okay, that was a twist. I’m going to have to dive into that and more at 11. Interesting. And Greg really appreciate that perspective and especially your firsthand view down there in Hilton Head
Greg White (42:29):
Scott Luton (42:29):
Yeah. Mike, your thoughts when it comes to the seafood supply chain?
Mike Griswold (42:35):
Yeah, I think we’re definitely seeing more and more of an emphasis on this particularly by retailers. I think though to Greg’s point, this needs to be part though of a broader sustainability story. So it’s great that you’re focused on the responsible seafood side of this, but if you’re doing nothing on your transportation fleet, say to drive less miles or to do something around electrification of your vehicles or whatever else it might be, human trafficking and human relations type of stuff, then it’s not a complete strategy. So I definitely am for this approach to sustainability. I think it’s also interesting because I think companies, as I mentioned, a it need to be part of a more broader, more comprehensive sustainability strategy, which I don’t know that some of these companies could actually articulate it outside of what they’re doing around the seafood industry. But I also think you have to know your customer base because there is a growing number of demographics that actually care about this and actually potentially are willing to pay more for sustainably sourced whatever we’re talking about seafood.
It could be beef, it could be whatever. But you also rightly or wrongly have a demographic that says, look, I just want to pay 1 99 a pound for shrimp. That’s all I care about. So I think organizations just need to understand how much do they want to push this with their customer base. But I also think, and Greg, great comment around scallops versus skate. We have a couple of really nice seafood restaurants here and our servers are very well educated on the seafood, where it comes from and all that. The reason I share that story is because retailers, supermarket, retailers are going to need to, if they’re not doing it now, they need to invest in the store associates where the questions are going to come.
Scott Luton (44:46):
Mike Griswold (44:47):
Questions are not going to come via email into some corporate communications. They’re going to come to the seafood person who says, explain to me now how you’re harvesting these crabs.
Tell me how are you doing it? And you’ve got someone making like 18 bucks an hour, right? Who I don’t know, I just go to the back group and pull it out, right? Come in a box, come in a box. Yeah, the boxes come three days a week. So sorry, I don’t mean to make light of that, but if you look at some places, I’ll use Wegman’s as an example, that I think does a really good job of educating their fresh food associates, everything from recipes, which I think is as important, but also to the nature of how stuff got from where it originally lived to now it’s in the cooler. And I think retailers miss an opportunity to reinforce that sustainable story if your store associates cannot play that back for people where the questions are going to come from.
Scott Luton (45:49):
Yeah, well said. Alright. Good catch. Good catch. Great catch so to speak. I didn’t mean it that way. Come on. You did. It was good. Alright, so a couple things here on a more serious note. RA Jose, great. See car. Going back to those fishing vessels that grocer was publishing list of URA says the New Yorker is reporting that China forces minorities from Xinjiang to work in industries around the country as we know, as it turns out, he says this includes handling much of this seafood sent to America and Europe. Thousands of tons of seafood imported from factories using forced labor continues to enter the US man. Alright, and then on a much, much, much lighter note, Greg, going back to your comments, old Peter Boley was hoping as he says, you’d move into a Forest Gump, Bubba Gump, shrimp tirade, popcorn shrimp, fried shrimp, shrimp cocktail. So Greg, I know you could do that
Speaker 6 (46:42):
Scott Luton (46:44):
Speaker 6 (46:44):
Scott Luton (46:46):
That’s about all there is I declare. There you go, Peter. Yeah, that’s good. So much to this story and so much kidding aside, serious issues that we’re going to have to address. But the cool good news here Greg and Mike, as y’all might hopefully agree with transparency and sunlight comes the knowledge and the ability to recognize these issues and then do something about it in an informed manner that’s so important. Agreed. Okay, Greg and Mike, this has been, what a great conversation. So before we wrap, I got a couple final questions for Mike and then we’re going to get Greg’s key patented key takeaway of the day. Alright, so Mike, again, appreciate you joining us here on the first Wednesday of each month. This happens to be the 1st of November, even though I did get my dates confused I think early in the first part of the show. So you’ve got your finger on the pulse, all the movers and shakers out there across global supply chain, really enjoy your work at Garner you and your team’s work. I know you’re a big proponent of eight. I stand on the shoulder of giants, she’s got a great team there. But Mike, since the last time you joined us about a month ago, what’s one conversation with a senior supply chain leader that’s really offered up a eureka moment for you?
Mike Griswold (47:58):
Yeah, I think when I think about the talent portion of my team, I think there are a lot of discussions going on continue to go on around this idea of how do we return to work. We came through that during the pandemic and I think there are a number of organizations that are revisiting this through the lens of we want everyone back in the office. And I would advise people based on our research, that is not a good idea that the flexibility and the productivity, quite frankly that emerged during the pandemic with remote working, hybrid working, all that kind of stuff I think continues. And I think organizations that want to go back to the draconian, we have an office. So therefore you need to be there five days a week that is going to force people out of your organization and we already know how hard it is to bring and replace that skillset.
So my advice to organizations is to really think long and hard about your, if you are going to revisit your return to work strategy, all of our research suggests organizations are having much more success in a hybrid environment. Hey, we have a building right Here are three or four use cases that make sense for you to come in and work together. And if that’s one day a week, two days a month, whatever it might be, this building is here for you. This idea that you need to be here Monday through Friday from eight to five just because I want you here, is going to be problematic for a lot of organizations if they go down that road.
Scott Luton (49:46):
Greg, your quick thoughts?
Greg White (49:49):
Yeah, I think you have to examine why you want people in the office. I mean, I know why I want people in the office, it’s because honestly water cooler talk is much more productive than talk over zoom. That casual comment that somebody might make passing you in the hall can change the trajectory of a company. It absolutely 100% can, I’ve seen it happen. On the other hand, I think there are some workers that there are some situations where they don’t trust their workers and that’s the core of it. If you don’t trust your workers, get rid of the ones you don’t trust. And I also think that there are workers work much better at home and will work much more. Programmers don’t make them get out of their pajamas and quit smoking pot. Let ’em do that at home and you’ll get a lot more out of ’em.
I’m serious. Let ’em play guitar at lunch. I’m just talking about particular people here and you are, play your guitar at lunch and get home for your kids’ event or be home for your kids’ events. Fine. I think that’s fine. It’s about, Scott, the same thing we always talk about, it’s about outcomes and I think there are also some roles where people can, because of the type of role that they are and the type of people that take that role where you can and probably should let them work at home. Accountants, they’re not going to shortchange you making sure something doesn’t get shortchanged is their job, right? If they want to work from home, let ’em do it. Engineers, unless they’re ideating on something like Mike was talking about, I think there are lots of jobs where it fits. Now, marketing people on the other hand, you need to keep an eye on those sales guys as long as they produce. I mean they’ve been able to run the planet as much as they want. I’ve never met a better golfer than a lifelong salesperson. But also they make three, four, $500,000 a year and they make much, much more than that for their company. So think about the outcome that you want out of these people. Don’t just mandate it because you want them back,
Mike Griswold (51:54):
It’s outcomes. Great. You’re spot on. I mean that really should be the litmus test, right? What outcome do I want? What’s the best vehicle to deliver it? And then trust people to get the work done. Yep,
Scott Luton (52:05):
Well said. Alright, I got to leave it there. I bet we’ve got some hard stops coming up. Really appreciate all the great comments we couldn’t get to here today. Great to see Koray and Gino and PB and everyone else here today. Mike, for the sake of time, just how can folks connect with you and the Gartner team? What’s the best way?
Mike Griswold (52:22):
LinkedIn or just drop me an email, Mike dot email@example.com. I will put in one quick plug. We have our planning summit in Phoenix at the end of November. I will be there. Feel free to look me up. And if you have any interest in anything related to planning, you’ll don’t want to attend that.
Scott Luton (52:38):
It’s a place to be. I’ve seen people going there and I’ve seen people going to the London. I think you have Element just wrapped. That’s what it was. Okay, well Mike, always a pleasure. The one and only Mike Griswold with Gartner. We look forward to already to seeing you next month. Hope you have a great, great month of November and if we don’t talk to you, happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.
Mike Griswold (52:58):
Thanks you as well. Looking forward to next
Greg White (53:00):
Month. My gosh. We’re talking about Thanksgiving. It has been here. Thanks Mike. Good, see you. Bye-Bye.
Scott Luton (53:05):
Alright, Greg. Yeah, believe it or not, it’s hard to believe 1st of November. Thanksgiving is just, I think it’s on the 23rd, 24th this year. So right around the corner. I’m just going to pose it via straight all that we covered today. What’s one key takeaway that folks’ got to keep front and center?
Greg White (53:22):
If you feel like you need a union for your job, consider the possibility that maybe you ought to work somewhere else or that if you need a union to make sure you get a living wage out of your job that you should instead spend the money you would spend on union dues. Getting the training for a job that’s much more valuable and more long-term feasible. That’s one thing that jumps out at me. I mean, I just don’t get
Scott Luton (53:53):
It. Well said. I liked what you mentioned earlier, this is why we can’t reshore nice things. That was wonderful. Mike Griswold said that these wins are short-term wins for workers, long-term challenges and losses perhaps for the automotive industry. All of that conversation was that the Amazon actually the whole day today I thought was a really good one that hopefully
Greg White (54:14):
Well, I mean you brought Mike Griswold. That’s true. We brought Mike Griswold on the show. Yeah. What else would we expect? Of course. And he always delivers.
Scott Luton (54:23):
Always delivers. And I should say when we added Gino’s compliment in there, great conversation is always when Mike visits and then we said, hopefully it’s okay when he is not here. He goes sometimes, Gino, thank you my friend. Always. We
Greg White (54:38):
Know where you live, Powell.
Scott Luton (54:39):
That’s right. North Alabama, always a pleasure. But seriously, thanks everybody. I know we couldn’t get everybody’s comment and question and remark over there. Thanks for being here. Greg White, always a pleasure to knock out these conversations.
Greg White (54:51):
Yeah, likewise. Yep, likewise. Appreciate it.
Scott Luton (54:54):
Alright folks. onas is now and you take a nugget. There’s so much to truckload today. A nugget of knowledge or observation or data or perspective and put it in action. It’s all about deeds, not words. Your team will appreciate it. And on that note, on behalf of the team here at Supply Chain now, Scott Luton challenge. You do good. Get forward, be the change. We’ll see you next time. Right back here at Supply Chain now. Thanks. Goodbye.
Thanks for being a part of our supply chain now, community. Check out all of our firstname.lastname@example.org and make sure you subscribe to Supply Chain now, anywhere you listen to podcasts. And follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on Supply Chain. Now.
Mike Griswold serves as Vice President Analyst with Gartner’s Consumer Value Chain team, focusing on the retail supply chain. He is responsible for assisting supply leaders in understanding and implementing demand-driven supply chain principles that improve the performance of their supply chain. Mr. Griswold joined Gartner through the company’s acquisition of AMR. Previous roles include helping line-of-business users align corporate strategy with their supply chain process and technology initiatives. One recent study published by a team of Gartner analysts, including Mike Griswold is Retail Supply Chain Outlook 2019: Elevating the Consumer’s Shopping Experience. Mr. Griswold holds a BS in Business Management from Canisius College and an MBA from the Whittemore School of Business & Economics at the University of New Hampshire. Learn more about Gartner here: www.gartner.com
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.
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.
Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more. In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.
Director of Communications and Executive Producer
Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys. She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.
Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.
Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.
Host, The Freight Insider
Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.
Host, 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.
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.
Host, Supply Chain Now
The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.
He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.
A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
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.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics. He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.
Host, 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Vice President, Production
Amanda is a production and marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Amanda currently manages, produces, and develops modern digital content for Supply Chain Now and their clients. Amanda has previously served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah, and founded and managed her own successful digital marketing firm, Magnolia Marketing Group. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now production team, you can find Amanda in the kitchen, reading, listening to podcasts, or enjoying time with family.
Constantine Limberakis is a thought leader in the area of procurement and supply management. He has over 20 years of international experience, playing strategic roles in a wide spectrum of organizations related to analyst advisory, consulting, product marketing, product development, and market research. Throughout his career, he's been passionate about engaging global business leaders and the broader analyst and technology community with strategic content, speaking engagements, podcasts, research, webinars, and industry articles.Constantine holds a BA in History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MBA in Finance & Marketing / Masters in Public & International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh.
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.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.
Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español
Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.
He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.
Host of Digital Transformers
Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix and IBM. Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.
Director of Sales
Tyler Ward serves as Supply Chain Now's Director of Sales. Born and raised in Mid-Atlantic, Tyler is a proud graduate of Shippensburg University where he earned his degree in Communications. After college, he made his way to the beautiful state of Oregon, where he now lives with his wife and daughter.
With over a decade of experience in sales, Tyler has a proven track record of exceeding targets and leading high-performing teams. He credits his success to his ability to communicate effectively with customers and team members alike, as well as his strategic thinking and problem-solving skills.
When he's not closing deals, you can find Tyler on the links or cheering on his favorite football and basketball teams. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing pick-up basketball, and traveling back to Ocean City, Maryland, his favorite place!
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.
Principal & CMO, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.
Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.
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.