My guest today is Ben Cook, Chief Supply Chain Officer at Spreetail, a next-generation 3PL company headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska.
We start the conversation with Ben sharing his early years. His father was an Army Officer who resigned soon after Ben was born to have a more stable family life. But that didn’t mean they set roots and became grounded, quite the opposite, as his father became a high-school football coach who moved through several high-schools in the Southeastern United States; and also did some time in Spain and in Africa on volunteer work. So Ben struggles with where “home” is, except that it’s the United States.
Ben then shares some details of his military career. Being in the Special Forces, the assignments were not the most comfortable (including stints above the arctic circle). But it was pre-9/11, so the assignments were (perhaps) a bit easier than afterwards.
After the military, he became interested in Supply Chain. Perhaps recognizing the importance of supply chains during his military career somehow influenced his gravitation to the discipline which, in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, was in its infancy.
We walk though the various roles he had; including one in China soon after China’s assentation to being a member of the World Trade Organization. And Ben shares some of the lessons learned along the way, some by design, some by accident, including a lesson-learned about culture eating strategy for breakfast.
These experiences led him to develop his personal approach to leadership which he calls “One Team”, and I am sure you will find his thoughts on this quite interesting; perhaps even adoptable.