Every company and job is different in some way, shape, or form; we understand that. However, we also understand that in the world of logistics, regardless of where you work, it often feels like you are managing more than you can handle. In an industry where you may feel you are only recognized when things go south (plans… not cargo), we have found that there are a few necessary attributes of a logistics manager that contribute to overall career and job success.
Must Have Attributes of a Logistics Manager
As a business that communicates frequently with logistics managers at other companies, we have done tons of research on what all goes into making a good employee. Based on the conversations we have had with dozens of logistics managers, these are 5 must have attributes of a logistics manager.
Anyone who has worked in the logistics industry understands that there are hundreds of options regarding any business decision you could make. From selecting vendors to finding container options to organizing your contact lists, there are endless ways to execute your business activities; some efficient, some not-so-much. Ensuring that you are always in the light on your various options for all business processes related to your field and consistently analyzing those will allow you to capitalize on the best alternatives whenever they come around.
Analyzing, researching, and learning only go so far if you don’t make sound decisions. Being in the know on your options is important, but it’s also important to execute a decision whenever a better alternative arises to your current business strategy. Continue to research your options and select the best opportunities for you company regarding freight forwarders, order management systems, rates, and any other activities related to your job.
Know Your Industry
Yes – you have worked in your industry for years and feel that you don’t need to be told this. While we understand that it’s hard to accept you may be missing key information, the truth is that it happens every single day. Knowing how to do your job is different than keeping up to date on relevant and current industry news (on a daily or weekly basis!) Politics, economics, and technology change faster than you realize, and making sure that you are connected with publishers and freight forwarders who continually enlighten you with industry updates is important.
Adaptability walks hand-in-hand with logical execution and analytical skills. The reason is simple; you need to be flexible and adaptable in order to capitalize on any and every opportunity which presents itself as better than your current situation. It’s the age old concept of continual improvement. Without allowing adaptability to steer your logical observations, you’re hurting the company’s bottom line and disallowing for business improvement.
Know How to Communicate
When we say communicate, we really mean communicate everything. Although you chat with coworkers, clients, prospects, and business partners on a daily basis, don’t allow those relational familiarities to affect the clarity of your communication. If 99% of miscommunication is unintentional, clearly filling in the blanks with all conversations you hold will help you to make and maintain more connections and business.
If you’re waiting for a promotion, or are just interested in entering into a new field with hopes of a logistics manager role, there are a few things we recommend. Firstly, talk with logistics managers about their journey. It’s a hefty role with a lot of responsibility and hard work. Secondly, apply the attributes of a logistics manager above. While these are not all-encompassing of all things you should focus on as a logistics manager, they give a good head start to anyone looking to obtain the new role or excel at their current job as a logistics manager.