GOOD QUESTION: Who Would Be Your Lifeline During a Logistics Crisis? Why?

GOOD QUESTION: Who Would Be Your Lifeline During a Logistics Crisis? Why?

Dwight D. Eisenhower. I make use of the Eisenhower Matrix (pictured). I would want to have heard from the man himself. Planning, preparing, and executing a moment in history like the Normandy invasion puts any logistics crisis in perspective. Do everything in your power to prepare. And at a certain point you need to have confidence in that preparation—and your people—to get on with the task at hand.

–Richard Kohn
Director, Global Logistics & Optimization
SeaCube Containers

Tony Fadell. He was the creator of a number of critical software and hardware technologies—including the iPod and Nest thermostat—which makes him qualified to understand both elements that generally exist in logistical crises. Tony was hired to design and build what became the iPod and shipped the first one to customers 290 days after beginning the project.

–Michael Johnson

Elon Musk. He is never satisfied with the current way of things. He always has a plan for the future and is not afraid to tell the truth as he sees it. Finally, he has the resources.

–Reo Hatfield
VP, Corporate Services
TA Services

A historic military leader who identified logistics as one of the most critical success factors and elevated the profession:

  • Dwight D. Eisenhower: “You will not find it difficult to prove that battles, campaigns, and even wars have been won or lost primarily because of logistics.”
  • Napoleon Bonaparte: “Amateurs discuss tactics, professionals discuss logistics.”
  • Alexander the Great: “My logisticians are a humorless lot. They know if my campaign fails, they are the first ones I will slay.”

–Andre Luecht
Global Practice Lead, Manufacturing, Transportation & Logistics
Zebra Technologies

My Dad. I was lucky to work with him to help grow his company Canyon State Courier when I was fresh out of college. I remember thinking how lucky I was to spend time with him daily, sitting in his office and working through the crazy challenges this industry brings our way.

–Tim Cocchia
CLDA Treasurer
Board Member and COO
Xcel Delivery Services

Dr. John Coyle from Penn State, though sadly he passed away. In his absence I would say that any of the logistics professors in Penn State’s Smeal College of Business could serve as a tremendous resource in a bind. I have alumni bias, but they have always been at the forefront of new research and trends related to the profession.

–Eric Elter
Director, Information and Technology Services
KDL Logistics

Sam Walton. As the founder of Walmart, his extensive experience in building and managing a retail empire with a strong focus on logistics and supply chain management would be invaluable in navigating and resolving the crisis effectively.

–George Maksimenko

Ulysses S. Grant. He won the U.S. Civil War based on excellence in supply chains.

–Antony Yousefian
VP Climate & Circularity

Laura Lane, chief corporate affairs and sustainability officer at UPS. During the pandemic I saw firsthand her ability to navigate through unprecedented government regulations. She kept UPS operating, both domestically and internationally.

–Melissa Somsen
Chief Commercial Officer
AFS Logistics

Ray Kroc. The McDonald’s founder was driven to maintain consistency. He drove efficiencies and delivered a high-quality customer experience while maintaining costs. His innovative practices more than three quarters of a century ago, are still influencing how supply chains are managed today.

–Stephen Dombroski
Director, Consumer Products and Food & Beverage Markets

The Allied logisticians who engineered victory for the United States, UK, Soviet Union, and their allies in World War II.

They had to move hundreds of thousands of people and vehicles to every part of the world—from remote Pacific islands to the deserts of North Africa—in extreme circumstances in very short periods of time. I think they could figure out how to move couches or clothes.

–Tony Pelli
Practice Director, Security and Resilience

Frederick McKinley Jones, a revolutionary inventor in the transportation industry. In the early 1900s, he patented the mechanical transport refrigeration unit, making it possible to transport food around the world, all while battling discrimination.

His insight and leadership would be tremendously valuable for leveraging temperature-controlled technology to simplify transportation.

–Sean Burke
Chief Commercial Officer
Echo Global Logistics

The leaders responsible for the movement of goods at the largest companies in the United States. These experts are actively utilizing technology to solve real-world supply chain issues. Hearing how they handle the obstacles they face daily would be inspiring.

–Eric Vasquez
Veterans Logistics Group

A long-term mentor who is always eager to listen, share, and challenge points of view to get to the root cause of a problem. With creative solutions, she has helped me overcome problems, threats, and challenges in the face of disruption.

–Ann Marie Jonkman, PMP
Senior Director, Global Industry Strategies
Blue Yonder

George Washington was a surveyor by profession. I remember the photo of him in my middle school history book looking through his trusty theodolite.

He understood the value of visibility and recognized the inherent challenge of fixing and reacting to what you can’t see, and improving what you can’t measure.

This notion resonates strongly in the context of logistics visibility, which is crucial in avoiding disruption or minimizing impact, even for the best-laid transportation plans.

–Douglas DeLuca
Business Network Solution Marketing

The leadership at Coca-Cola. They have the best distribution network in the entire world, getting products onto shelves incredibly soon after launch. With the ability to navigate and thrive within international supply chains, while dealing with a diverse set of regulatory requirements, they are an ideal source for dealing with a complex logistics crisis.

–Bryan Gerber
Founder & CEO
HARA Supply

Pep Guardiola, the Spanish coach who just led English soccer team Manchester City to the treble, would be an ideal advisor. Guardiola is a meticulous planner—leaving no stone unturned. He would have 360-degree visibility of his supply base and identify potential problems long before they became an issue.

–Matthias Gutzmann
Founder & CEO

My co-founder, Daniel, the guy needs a lot of caffeine, but he can solve any logistics problem I throw at him.

–Troy Lester
CRO, Co-Founder

My co-founder, Troy Lester, the guy drinks no caffeine and can still keep up with me.

–Daniel Sokolovsky
CEO, Co-Founder

Just like pilots in a crisis—in logistics, we turn to the control tower. It brings visibility and agility— when paired with a best-in-class 4PL solution, multi-modal infrastructure, and advanced reporting technology, every partner in the supply chain benefits. Better visibility = better, quicker, decisions, especially during times of uncertainty or doubt.

–Robert Boyle, PMP
President, Managed Services
Odyssey Logistics

The truck driver. Not the broker, not the salesperson, not the dispatcher, but the driver. When the shipment is critical, the truck driver’s commitment is the only one that counts.

–Kevin Day
President of LTL
AFS Logistics

I would call Perry Falk the head of NTG’s Carrier Sales department. His ability to leverage relationships with NTG’s carrier partners in a fast nimble manner would allow us to solve the most complex crisis.

–Ian Hess
EVP, Customer Sales and Operations
Nolan Transportation Group

In a logistics crisis, my lifeline would be Ian Hess, EVP of Brokerage Sales and Operations at NTG. His deep industry knowledge, proven crisis management skills, innovative problem-solving, and extensive professional network make him an invaluable resource in navigating and resolving complex logistical challenges swiftly and efficiently.

–Perry Falk
EVP, Carrier Operations
Nolan Transportation Group