A supply chain manager is a challenging role. They must have leadership potential, think innovatively, and put people first when working with customers and departments, among many other things, to be successful. In this article, Managing Director of Latin America Carlos Gonzalez-Compte covers qualities you can look for when hiring one.
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What Does a Supply Chain Manager Do?
From planning to executing and controlling the entire process of manufacturing, distribution, and marketing of goods, a supply chain manager’s duties include managing inventory levels and overseeing the production of goods. A quality supply chain manager must have leadership potential, think innovatively, and put people first when working with customers and different departments.
Top Qualities of a Supply Chain Manager
They Have Leadership Skills & Potential
A supply chain manager must be systems-driven, analytical, and adept at interpreting data and building efficiencies. The ability to learn these systems can make or break their performance. But it’s also essential to have leadership skills that will make them effective managers.
They may be someone who has a “servant leadership” mentality. Another sign of leadership skills is that they’re passionate about their work. They don’t see their role as a nine-to-five job but rather a career they’re willing to invest in.
Although hiring someone who already embodies leadership skills is wise, it’s important to remember that the strongest leaders never stop growing. Building leaders can be challenging because it does take time and intentionality to give them the coaching and direction they need to succeed. But ingraining a growth-minded culture that builds and inspires leaders can positively affect new team members and the company.
They Think Innovatively
Supply chain managers must be able to think outside the box when it comes to logistics services. They need to find new ways of doing things that will save time or money without sacrificing quality and identify partners who can do the same.
Our Pegasus team thrives on identifying problems and developing unique solutions for customers. We have a saying, “one size fits none,” which applies to being adaptable. Adaptability can look like identifying alternative solutions or constructing multiple mitigation strategies.
In addition, a transactional mindset can prevent supply chain managers from success in today’s climate. Thinking outside the box sets supply chain managers up to win because they will perform better under pressure and offer unconventional solutions.
They’re People Focused
A supply chain manager needs to have excellent communication skills as they will deal with all stakeholders, such as suppliers, customers, and other departments in their company. Supply chain managers need to have the hard skills necessary to succeed in their roles, but they also need to embody the soft skills that enable them to lead and grow their teams.
A person with good people skills is often an effective listener. Being an effective listener helps them understand their surrounding elements and stakeholder needs. It will also aid them when building up their teams, which ties back to leadership skills.
Someone with people skills is more likely to be a great leader and manager. Having a high emotional quotient or intelligence is essential to read people and understand what they need to grow.
Tips for Hiring Supply Chain Professionals
What are their motivations?
As an example, the labor force in Costa Rica is typically younger, and they generally want to make an impact as quickly as possible.
Different generations come to the office with different motivations. As you understand what kind of people you attract to your company, you can answer questions like: How do we instill leadership? How do we build millennial team members versus older or even younger generations? Building trust is essential to lead each generation to become more engaged with the company’s goal and vision.
How can you invest in the next generation?
Logistics careers and supply chain management careers are becoming increasingly popular among college students because of the talk about the current climate. As the industry progresses with automation and artificial intelligence advancements, we believe those early in their career will lean toward the profession as a long-term career decision.
Learning what motivates young professionals and students to work in the supply chain and logistics can be a catalyst to help them grow into leadership roles like a supply chain manager, for example. The more you know how to connect with the next generation, the more you can identify future leaders and invest in them for the long haul.
About Pegasus Logistics Group
We redefine the standards for time-definite transportation. We provide custom logistics solutions and outstanding experiences by investing resources into team members, technology, and a superior transportation network. This approach frees us from an asset-heavy environment beholden to the push-pull mentality of multi-location facilities with significant footprints in every market.
We have strategically positioned capacity available for your ever-changing supply chain. Our operational model has strict performance benchmarks, and we are focused on delivering your company the best value, efficient results, and the most reliable service.