Articles

Education & Careers

Lewis Dibert: Spinning Red Into Gold

Despite an affable disposition, Lewis Dibert spends his days seeing red. As director of logistics for Red Gold Inc., each day from July through October he moves hundreds of truckloads of tomatoes from fields in five states to be packed into cans at three Indiana production plants. The rest of the year, he brings in […]

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What Makes a Logistics Leader?

Great leaders relish and seek responsibility and accountability. They inspire confidence, win the hearts and minds of their team, and bring out their best, whether on the warehouse floor or in the executive wing. The strategies and advice in this article can help get you on the leadership track.

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Alex Reizinger: Stretching His Wings

When Sandy Reizinger first went to work for Ryder Supply Chain Solutions three years ago, he had barely a moment to breathe. Reizinger was part of a team managing transportation for Nortel Networks at its “systems house”—a final assembly and distribution center in Montreal. As logistics coordinator, he built 10 to 12 daily trailer loads, […]

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Brittain Ladd: Doing It Right The First Time, Every Time

Success to me,” says Brittain Ladd, “is educating others on the importance of quality and doing the job right the first time, every time.” As a Six Sigma black belt, Ladd has dedicated himself to eliminating variance—making sure his organization adheres to the highest standards in every detail. Ladd is transportation planning manager for Michaels […]

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Brian Godfrey: An Explosive Career

Work is a blast for Brian Godfrey. As a logistics supervisor for Dyno Nobel North America, Godfrey is in charge of moving truck, railcar, and barge loads of ammonium nitrate (AN), a fertilizer used as an explosive in mining and construction. He negotiates transportation contracts, traces rail shipments, and routes his goods from manufacturing plants […]

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Karen Caswelch: Quality In High Gear

When Karen Caswelch joined Allison Transmission as director of purchasing last year, she had no corporate purchasing experience. But her record in operations and quality management made her supremely qualified to carry out her number-one mission. “The ultimate mandate,” Caswelch says, “is to keep the plants running. And you’ve got to keep them running with […]

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Bob Wegmann: Blood Work

As Americans jammed Red Cross blood centers after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Bob Wegmann and his staff worked the phones. Their mission: to get vendors to rush enough blood bags, swabs, printed forms, and other supplies to accommodate the hordes of donors. “Obviously, no one predicted Sept. 11. But we were able to predict, […]

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Michael Trotter: Striking a Balance

Loading pallets with electrical supplies bound for factories and construction sites, “you learn quickly that you can’t set light bulbs on the bottom and put wire on the top,” laughs Michael Trotter, director of logistics at Van Meter Industrial in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. But for a distributor with 29,000 SKUs of all sizes and shapes—from […]

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Finding the Right Logistics Recruiter

Alex Metz, president, Hunt Ltd., Lindhurst, N.J., offers these tips on deciding when to use a logistics recruiter and selecting the right one. 1. Recognize when you need help. If you need to replace an individual on staff confidentially, or you have a limited HR department that cannot process the field calls and interview candidates, […]

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Andrea Greco: Greco’s Game

The biggest logistics challenge I have right now is being able to go fishing on the weekends and still spend time with my kids,” laughs Andrea Greco, vice president, supply chain for Fila USA. Shuttling between a job near Baltimore and a young family in New York demands careful organization. So does coordinating the supply […]

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Human Resources Vital in the Age of Technology

Technology makes the modern world go ’round, or at the very least makes modern business work. But to build a global freight forwarding network—and make it thrive—technology is not an answer in and of itself. It is a cultural and business evolution. Before implementing technology, freight forwarders must have the right professionals in the right […]

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Stacy Eakes: A Seasoned Professional

Stacy Eakes took up rock climbing this year for fun, but she finds that the sport has a lot to teach a logistics professional. “It’s all about problem solving,” she explains. “You learn to shift your weight and look at things from a new perspective, opening new possibilities.” Back on the ground, that mix of […]

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General John M. McDuffie: Telling War Stories

When John M. “Mike” McDuffie talks about a crisis, he doesn’t mean a late shipment; he means catastrophes such as the 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. As director of logistics for the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Lieutenant General McDuffie coordinated the race to move people, equipment, and supplies to […]

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Dennis Hilborn: Know Thyself

“Who are we?” is one of Dennis Hilborn’s favorite questions. In his two and a half years as director of distribution at sports apparel maker Cutter & Buck, asking employees over and over who they are has helped him transform the Seattle-based company’s distribution center (DC). When Hilborn arrived at Cutter & Buck, “distribution was […]

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Improving Employee Efficiency Through Education

Providing superior customer service is a fundamental goal of every successful business. The manner in which employees provide value-added service is key not only to maintain, but also to attract, additional business. To be successful service providers, companies need to focus on variables such as improving employee efficiency and productivity through focused training and education […]

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Logistics Education: Homegrown Distance Learning

Today’s business logistics professionals need to continually upgrade and improve their supply chain skillsets. Besides the expected benefit of administering logistics responsibilities more effectively, the effect on your paycheck’s bottom line will be dramatic. Yet who among us has the luxury to stop work and take off for the nearest college campus, whatever the personal […]

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Reader Profiles

This new column featuring logistics professionals who’ve been around the block a few times and have volunteered to share their experiences with readers. This debut installment features three profiles; future issues will carry one profile each.

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Practicing Enlightened Leadership

With employers facing labor shortages and unprecedented worker mobility, a stable, productive workforce of drivers, owner operators, and support employees is unusual in the rapidly changing trucking industry. It has been my experience in this industry that workforce stability—with low employee turnover—follows enlightened leadership. Enlightenment arrives when leaders elevate their game to a higher level. […]

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