#98: Daniel Stanton, “Mr. Supply Chain”

#98: Daniel Stanton, "Mr. Supply Chain" Featured Image

Daniel Stanton, most fondly known to most of us as Mr. Supply Chain, is the best selling author of Supply Chain Management for Dummies.

He has worked with Caterpillar, the U.S. Navy, APICS (now ASCM), MHI.

Daniel has also been a professor at Bradley University, Jack Welch Management Institute, and National American University and is currently a LinkedIn Learning Instructor of over 10 LinkedIn Courses. He is recognized as a “Pro to Know” for Supply & Demand Chain Executive Magazine, and a Supply Chain Futurist for IBM Sterling Supply Chain.

Listen to the full discussion here:

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Connect with the Guest:

Daniel Stanton: LinkedIn

Some of the highlights from the podcast:

  • Growth of LinkedIn Learning during this pandemic
  • How LinkedIn Learning is developing courses regarding supply chain operations
  • How important storytelling is for professionals and executives
  • The progress on the COVID vaccine by Pfizer
  • Supply Chain Certifications through online classes
  • Promoting supply diversity and sustainability
  • Building relationships

Show notes:

  • [01:10] I wanted to first and foremost kind start on that part of asking you what you’ve done in terms of LinkedIn Learning,  the courses, and what you’re seeing as people are picking it up. Have you seen growth in demand in the last couple of months, when we were all stuck at home? 
  • [03:03] LinkedIn Learning saw explosive growth over the time of February, March, and continuing right through the summer, and part of it is because people had more time.
  • [04:08] My LinkedIn Learning courses have been watched by over a million people. The scale, the impact that you can have on that sort of a platform compared to what you can do in person, just outsized the impact online. 
  • [06:19] In the overall scheme of things, the topic of supply chain operations is not as developed in LinkedIn as it could be. So do you see it broadening? Do you see them getting more experts or how do you see the next months? 
  • [08:14] The more specialized you get with a course that you’re trying to put together, the smaller the audience you’re hitting. 
  • [10:04] In our previous event when I asked the panels about the supply chain skills one similarity is storytelling, so why not a course on storytelling for supply chain?
  • [11:52] Online video is all about storytelling and that’s how humans have been communicating and sharing knowledge and building relationships since the dawn of time. So to not take advantage of that, when we’re trying to communicate complex ideas doesn’t make any sense.
  • [12:48] I think telling the story about the COVID vaccine and what we need to do to be able to mobilize and execute on this enormous challenge facing the whole world is a huge responsibility right now that we as a professional community really need to be taking on.
  • [14:45] People don’t know what supply chain is, they don’t understand what these jobs are, how they work, and how things get to them. This is our moment to show and to explain it and educate as well as execute. 
  • [15:59] Pfizer is early across the finish line, but there are, I’ve heard 50 or 250 different vaccines in the pipeline, all of which have different storage requirements.
  • [19:06] The uptake on the courses has been huge in general overall, but I really think those learning paths, the become a supply chain manager certificate, in particular, has helped people to focus and narrow in on the courses that they really need to have.
  • [20:16] In terms of tech skills, do you think there is an overlap with supply chain? Or not?
  • [21:51] If you want to be efficient about your learning, start by focusing on what job you want to have, talk to people that have that job, look at the job description to see what skills they’re asking for, and definitely put in the effort to make sure that you’re developing those skills. 
  • [22:17] Let’s talk a little bit about the course you put up on Udemy about supply diversity. Maybe start by explaining first, because I think a lot of people might find it useful and then tell a little bit about the course and about how companies can use it.
  • [23:16] The way that we can use supply chains to promote equality and social justice is through supplier diversity, making sure that we have suppliers in our supply base who represent the broad range of groups in communities that exists in the countries where we do business.
  • [26:39] We can actually have a huge impact through our supply chains and as supply chain practitioners on enormous social challenges, but in order for that impact to be meaningful and in order for it to be sustainable, it can’t just be spending more money for the same stuff, but getting it from somebody different. 
  • [28:34] The core of the course is about how do you set targets for supplier diversity? And how do you pair your implemented program with a supplier development program so that your diverse suppliers actually become your exceptional suppliers?
  • [29:17] What would be some of the programs which are highly successful that you would recommend if somebody at mid-level wants to advance their supply chain career. Are there certain courses that you would recommend? 
  • [32:57] I think we have this huge number of choices. I don’t know if one of them is the right choice or the wrong choice. It depends on the career you want to build and the impact that you want to have.
  • [37:28] One of the things that’s interesting about the time that we’re living in is relationships are no less important, but how you build and maintain relationships in the age of LinkedIn and Twitter actually is different. 
  • [38:46] Supply chains are all about relationships. Yes, data is important, technology’s important,  process discipline is important, but at the end of the day, you do business with people that you trust and you help people that you like.

Related Episodes:

#95: Dr. Marcell Vollmer Partner and Director at Boston Consulting Group

#96: Sandra MacQuillan EVP & CSCO at Mondelēz International

#97: John Church EVP of Supply Chain & CSCO at General Mills

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