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Consumer Goods Logistics Blog


We're Not Your Grandfather's Supply Chain (or are we?)

Published by Mikhail Taskaya on April 30, 2015

 

Full disclosure – I don’t know much about supply chain, logistics or transportation.

I’m a recent hire at KANE, fresh out of graduate school. I know all the book theories, but theories do not take into account the real world problems and situations that arise in supply chain management.

So why am I a contributor to this blog on consumer goods logistics?

Well, it was assigned to me and I’d like to keep my new boss happy.

But, I do have a perspective to share. It’s true, I don’t view the supply chain through experienced eyes. However, I do view it through fresh eyes. Eyes that, while a little naïve and impatient, are more hard-wired to look for technology-based solutions and may recognize new approaches to some old challenges.

That said, one observation I’ve made on my first few months on the job is that, regardless of how advanced we become with technology, supply chain execution actually embodies a very old school ethos. 

I think of my grandparents, who emigrated to the U.S. from Russia. They were nose-to-the-grindstone type of people who approached work with a simple goal: to do a job to the best of their ability. They didn’t seek recognition. In fact, if they got a “job well done” pat on the back, they would probably be embarrassed by it. To them, the work was its own reward. 

In my opinion, I think the logistics industry is similar in that sense. We are the invisible mechanisms that make the hands of the clock move. Noticed only when the timing goes off. Our goal is not recognition, but to find smarter ways to get products from the factory to the retail shelf, so that millions of consumers can access the products they need – easily and affordably. 

Our grandparents did their jobs without complaint to provide a roof over their children’s heads, food on the table and better opportunities for a prosperous future. Not flashy, but important. And they succeeded. Like them, what we do in third party logistics every day matters. Getting goods to market. Serving the people who serve the consumer. I like being a part of that.

I’ve seen some amazing, technology-based solutions since I started at KANE, but nothing has impressed me more than the quiet commitment of scores of associates to the simple goal of timely, accurate order fulfillment and delivery – for thousands upon thousands of orders.

Old school, but quite impressive.

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Filed under: Logistics Labor Management| 3PL Outsourcing