Inbound Logistics | June 2021

Sutherland: It starts with networking. I remember when my professor at the University of Southern California said I should join the National Council of Physical Distribution Management, which has since become the Council for Supply Chain Management Professionals. Because I’ve since been a part of this association, I’ve always had a network. Many people in our field may go through six or eight job changes during their career, and a lot of times that’s a step up. Get involved in networking and associations, not only as a student but also throughout your professional career, and continue to learn. Equally, challenge your boss to give you responsibilities in different areas. It’s up to the company to provide employees with a clear career path if they want to retain you over time, but it’s up to you to be in control of that path as well.

Dr. Li: Know your interests and strengths. Supply chain management is such a broad umbrella, with functional areas ranging from procurement to operations, logistics and transportation. Understanding your expertise will allow you to better maximize your potential. Take time to think—is your strength in qualitative thinking and reasoning, or quantitative, meticulous analytics? That’s my advice.  n Tune in to IL ’s podcast: What is the State of Supply Chain Education Today ? for more information on the supply chain education programs offered by the University of Missouri-St. Louis, Iowa State University, and the University of San Diego School of Business Supply Chain Management Institute.

IL: What advice would you give to students looking to enter the workforce, and to current professionals seeking to expand their professional horizons? Grawe: Network. From a student perspective, have conversations with your professors—you’d be amazed at the connections they have. We talk to companies and learn a lot through the research that we’re conducting, so students can better understand industries and what they want to do through establishing those relationships. One of the things that drives me nuts is when people say, “When this pandemic is over, I’m going to do xyz .” The pandemic is not an excuse for waiting or delaying, and now is as good a time as any. Supply chains run because of relationships.

TRAIN TOGETHER AGAIN In-person hazmat shipping and RCRA hazardous waste workshops return to select cities in August 2021 . Collaborate with your peers and leave with unmatched resources and ongoing support to simplify compliance .

66 Inbound Logistics • June 2021 Charlotte | Orlando | Nashville | Atlanta | Houston | Dallas Find a course at or call 888-LION-511

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