Author: Ken Whah, President and CEO —
Supply chain activities can be very cyclical, especially when it comes to frozen foods, but they can also be impacted by unforeseen disruptions, such as hurricanes and pandemics. In both scenarios, we gain experience as our careers grow longer. For example, Hanson Teammates know the fairly predictable cycles of fruit and vegetable harvests. We know that we’ll need room for frozen blueberries and cherries and we can expect, or plan, for greater throughput of ice cream in the summer, frozen turkeys and pies as we head into the holidays.
All of us unfortunately, have gained experience in life in pandemics; I hope with all my heart that we never have to put that experience to good use in the coming years. But if we do, we’ll know the procedures and protocols to put in place. We’ll be able to make decisions, to think ahead instead of just reacting to what’s happened.
One of the tenants of the Hanson Way is Thinking Ahead. “We anticipate the next step and others needs to be successful. We improve activities through proper planning, not just reacting to the past. We do two extra things so others will be ready and prepared to deliver the plan.”
Thinking ahead has different applications at different times. Today, it means stopping for gas on my way home so I’m ready for a weekend getaway later tomorrow. For others, thinking ahead may be as simple as creating a more thorough list of items needed in the household for the next trip to the store. Do you a few extra masks in your car.? Or maybe some of us need to have a family discussion around the coming school year or the college options that are still a few years down the road.
At work, we have immediate tasks and long-term objectives. If we finish our work today, can we help teammates finish theirs? Do you have an agenda to follow at your next meeting? Are you seeing potential stock outs if your customer’s orders tick up more than usual? Can you cross-train or job shadow as time allows to make you more qualified for future positions?
Granted, in today’s radically changed world, our focus should not drift from staying healthy and helping others do the same. Yet, even in these challenging times, we are often presented with opportunities to make tomorrow better. . . to plan for the upside while we ready ourselves for the downside.
Thinking ahead is one more reason why Hanson Teammates can say with confidence, “Yes We Can!”