July 6, 2015
Column | big picture

Aspire to inspire

This year's Rainmakers can teach us all something about what it takes to be a truly successful supply chain leader.

By David Maloney

This month we recognize the heroes of the supply chain. It is our annual look at the Rainmakers—people who have made a lasting contribution to the supply chain profession. This year's class of 10 includes eight men and two women from a variety of disciplines, including four practitioners, two academics, three service providers, and a consultant.

For those not familiar with the DC Velocity Rainmakers program, our editorial advisory board and other industry leaders nominate professionals who, according to the program's guidelines, "have made a lasting difference in the field—individuals who have demonstrated innovation and leadership in logistics, transportation, material handling, supply chain management, and technology. They are professionals from all facets of the business whose achievements set them apart from the crowd."

The accomplishments of the 2015 Rainmakers are many. They've founded companies, earned doctorates, created jobs, and published articles. But beyond the measureable milestones, there are their numerous intangible achievements.

These Rainmakers see the big picture beyond their personal accomplishments. Most participate in industry organizations and the activities these organizations sponsor. They serve as officers, board members, and chairs of key committees. They share their wisdom and experience to further the goals of the organizations.

These select individuals are well connected, and their networking puts them in touch with others from whom they can learn and advance their own knowledge of the industry. They are not threatened by those who might compete with them, but instead encourage others to succeed—knowing that the rising tide of knowledge raises all ships.

These professionals are also attuned to trends that affect the industry and are regular speakers at events and conferences. They share their opinions and ideas in articles, blogs, and social media feeds as well.

Besides the work with industry organizations, most are also heavily involved with charities, giving back to their communities. Many also give time and expertise to local colleges or their alma maters by serving on boards, teaching classes, offering internships, and providing financial support to the next generation of professionals.

And speaking of the next generation, these professionals provide mentorship to young workers, often in the tradition of those who mentored them and influenced their own careers.

We can learn from their examples, emulating them to provide the leadership necessary to create a strong industry where all strive for excellence. I hope you enjoy reading about this year's class of Rainmakers. Maybe next year your name will be among them.

About the Author

David Maloney
Editorial Director
David Maloney has been a journalist for more than 35 years and is currently the editorial director for DC Velocity and Supply Chain Quarterly magazines. In this role, he is responsible for the editorial content of both brands of Agile Business Media. Dave joined DC Velocity in April of 2004. Prior to that, he was a senior editor for Modern Materials Handling magazine. Dave also has extensive experience as a broadcast journalist. Before writing for supply chain publications, he was a journalist, television producer and director in Pittsburgh. Dave combines a background of reporting on logistics with his video production experience to bring new opportunities to DC Velocity readers, including web videos highlighting top distribution and logistics facilities, webcasts and other cross-media projects. He continues to live and work in the Pittsburgh area.

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