Tag Archive: supply chain

What’s Important in Technology?

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It is quite telling that every executive panelist on the “Professional Pathways in Supply Chain” panel at the Drucker Supply Chain Forum (Walt Disney Company, Source Intelligence, Intelligent Audit and LMA Consulting Group) had a significant focus on technology. Supply chain and technology go hand-in-hand. Thus, what should we be thinking about when it comes to technology? Although many technology topics arose, let’s focus in on three of the ones that pop to mind first: 1. Business intelligence– Every panelist agreed on the importance of business intelligence. In essence, how do you leverage data to see trends, make decisions, etc.? For example, Intelligent…
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Collaborating on Economic Forecasts

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I met with the Claremont McKenna team that puts together the Inland Empire economic forecast last week. They are well known in the Inland Empire for being on the forefront of the economics forecast and finding ways to bring unique insights into the process. Therefore, they were interested in what I see in terms of outsourcing, nearsourcing, insourcing and other key trends in manufacturing. Economic factors can have a significant impact on your business. I learned quite a lot about this from my Director of Purchasing when I was a VP of Operations many years ago. It was simply amazing — and…
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Drucker Supply Chain Forum Executives Share What They Look for in Supply Chain Professionals

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What are executives looking for in supply chain professionals? That was the topic of the panel I participated in at the Drucker Supply Chain Forum with executives from the Walt Disney Company, Source Intelligence, Intelligent Audit and CSCMP. So, what is the consensus? Broad knowledge– Supply chains are global and more complex in today’s world. Thus, a broad and diverse set of skills is required to be successful in the field. If you have the opportunity to try a new area you wouldn’t have requested, give it a shot. You might just enjoy it. Worst case, you’ll have built skills that will come in…
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3 Takeaways from the Drucker Supply Chain Forum

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At the Drucker Supply Chain Forum held recently, there was a panel of distribution executives from Amazon, Toyota, QVC and Komar discussing “Company Culture as a Competitive Advantage”. I’ve found that if all of my clients (or my best clients) have something in common or emphasize the same point, I should pay attention. In this case, the themes noted by every successful executive included: 1. Core values– interestingly, we found that establishing and living by core values was integral to success when I was a VP of Operations for PaperPak. The executive panel agreed. Do you have values? Do your employees know…
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The Drucker Supply Chain Forum

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I participated on the panel, “Professional Pathways in Supply Chain” at the Drucker Supply Chain Forum last week. Interesting to note that the panel was all women — definitely not typical but nice to see! I was joined by executives from Walt Disney, Source Intelligence, Intelligent Audit and CSCMP. It was a lot of fun, and I learned as much as I contributed. We had some engaging discussions about the future of supply chain and the types of professionals that will be needed. For details on these topics, please tune in to my recent Profit Through People newsletter. However, one of the keys I…
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Reshoring Gains

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According to Industry Week and the Reshoring Initiative, after two decades of job losses, we have turned the corner. In 2014, we had a net gain of 10,000 reshored jobs. And, clearly, this is picking up steam especially as we are in the thick of 2017. According to the article, South Carolina is the top winner thus far, followed by Michigan and California (surprising; however, since Boeing is the 3rd largest reshoring company, it makes sense), Kentucky and Texas. Walmart and Ford were the top two reshoring companies. There is certainly a buzz with reshoring and near-sourcing. We’ve received calls from several potential…
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Harvey Mudd College Wins APICS West Coast Student Case Competition

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The APICS Southwest District recently hosted 23 teams in San Diego from the Western United States, Hong Kong and Mexico in a student case competition to solve computer-simulated supply chain problems, provide analysis and present their recommendations. Undergraduate team Harvey Mudd College won the top spot representing the Southwest District in the national competition in San Antonio, Texas. These simulations challenged students, most with backgrounds in operations management, supply chain management, business management, industrial engineering, or MBA students, to create solutions to the problems posed and provide the rationale for their recommendations. Their work cumulated into judged presentations explaining their strategies and proposed outcomes.…
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Times Square and Marketing Appeal

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Recently, when I was in New York, I had the opportunity to walk down Times Square (pictured below). The people, the buzz and the lights are amazing — almost no matter what time you take a stroll. There is a certain appeal of the advertisements. TV shows that you didn’t care about previously look more enticing as they flash by on nearby buildings. Store advertisements seem more appealing than they do in print, on-line or on TV. Do you wonder why? There is a marketing appeal to walking in Times Square. How can we create this with our companies? One tip…
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The Power of Connections and the CEO Summit

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Earlier this week, I participated in the CEO Summit hosted by the University of La Verne. I moderated a session on leveraging the supply chain for growth and profitability (see one shot of us below), and I am a Board member for the College of Business and Public Management, and this is our key event of the year. The keynote speaker, Karen Caplan, CEO of Frieda’s Specialty Produce started her speech off by noting the power of connections. She attributed her connections and networks as significant to her success. How does your network stack up? I can personally attest to the power of connections.…
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Trump’s Major Increase in Defense Spending and Related Impacts

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Trump has proposed a rather dramatic increase in defense spending. His proposed $20 billion boost in military spending isn’t pocket change and will have a dramatic ripple effect on manufacturers across-the-board. It doesn’t matter what gets approved in the end — the direction is clear. How will defense spending impact your business? Waiting for final approval before considering how to leverage this opportunity seems foolhardy! FYI I love the picture below as it reminds me of one of my all-time favorite shows, JAG. What Should We Consider and/or What Impacts Could Arise? When military spending increases, defense-related manufacturing booms. It…
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