CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly
March 17, 2018
Chain Reactions

Chain Reactions


"Emotional intelligence," education, and experience shape leaders

Regarding "Are supply chain leaders born or made?" (Q4/2010): I happened to read your commentary around the time I read two other articles on the same subject, both published in the Harvard Business Review.

The first one—"What Makes a Leader?"—was authored by Daniel Goleman (2004). According to Goleman's research, truly effective leaders are distinguished by a high degree of "emotional intelligence," which includes self-awareness, selfregulation, motivation, empathy, and social skill. When Goleman calculated the ratio of technical skills, intelligence quotient (IQ), and emotional intelligence as characteristics of excellent performance, emotional intelligence proved to be twice as important as the others for jobs at all levels.

The second article—"Discovering Your Authentic Leadership"—by Bill George, Peter Sims, Andrew N. McLean, and Diana Mayer (2007), was based on interviews with 125 leaders to learn how they developed their leadership abilities. According to these authors:

  • An individual does not have to be born with any universal characteristics or traits of a leader. This conclusion is somewhat contradictory to Dr. Scott Shane's findings.
  • The life experience of authentic leaders involved overcoming difficult experiences. This conclusion is congruent with Richard Arvey's observation.

Overall, based on the current research, it appears that well-developed "emotional intelligence" coupled with a person's genes are the keys to supply chain leaders' success. In addition, education is playing a critical role in the success of supply chain leaders, as evidenced by some recent studies.

– Rao Panchalavarapu
Senior Engineer, Schneider National
Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA

Editor's Note: Mr. Panchalavarapu wrote "What's the best design for your dedicated fleet?" in the Q1/2010 edition of Supply Chain Quarterly.

Experienced supply chain talent available

If Human Resources departments would get rid of their unrealistic hiring practices, they would find that there is a lot of very valuable, experienced talent available.

The pool of 24-year-olds with logistics MBAs, 20plus years of experience, and a rainbow of quality belts who are available to work 12 hours on/12 hours off, six days per week is very limited. On the other hand, there is an available pool of very experienced, hardworking, creative, resourceful 50- to 60-year-olds who are much more cost-effective and will get the job done right, on time, and under budget.

– John Licht
Madisonville, Kentucky, USA

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