7 Traits of Successful Logistics Managers
The job of a logistics manager is not an easy one. You need to get just the right products to just the right location and do so quickly, efficiently, and cheaply. If you are not careful, you can easily get swamped by information and the demands of your job. So, how can you ensure you are successful? What traits should successful logistics managers possess?
1. Good Analytical Skills
We have already mentioned that it is easy to get swamped by information doing a logistics manager’s job. There are many options for every step of the process you must wrangle with: Which storage facility is the best for which product, which company should you use for transport, what is the right vendor for your product, or even how best to reduce your carbon footprint. Every option has its merits, so the only way to choose the best one is to analyse the available data and strike a balance between efficiency, cost, and quality of the service. To do this, you must be not only good with numbers, but also capable of sorting out and analysing everything meticulously.
2. Adaptability is a Must
Logistic trends and updates are constantly changing, and you must follow industry trends. If we compare the world of logistics to what it was even just 5 years ago, we will find significant shifts. The ever-increasing reliance on computer technology, the introduction of drones, and many other changes forced logistics managers to either adapt or be left behind. And that is not even the only type of adaptability your job requires. Your work will constantly throw challenges at you. Your contractors might suddenly cancel on you, leaving you with entire shipments just sitting in storage. In such a situation, you would have to quickly take action, adapt, and find an alternative solution.
3. Excellent Communication Skills
This trait actually comes in two forms: First, you need to have good social skills and know how to engage your clients and employees. If you do not have good people skills, deals that should be easy to arrange can fall through due to disagreements and personal feelings getting in the way. Secondly, you must be concise and transparent in your instructions, orders, and proposals. If miscommunication occurs, you are looking at an inconvenience at best, or entirely wrong shipments and orders at worst. You should always have notes and lists of everything you need to do properly drawn up since it will help you keep a grasp on what is required of you and reduce the chances of something like that happening.
4. Good Attention to Detail
You need to be highly aware of your workplace, co-workers, and employees. In negotiations, you need to pay attention to the other party’s behaviour and emotions. This will help reveal their satisfaction or dissatisfaction with your proposals, as well as their viability. If the other party looks nervous when hearing your demands yet agrees to them, you should keep an eye out so that your requests are properly carried out. In your workplace, learn to pay attention to the efforts of your team. Praise those who excel as a form of encouragement, but do not forget to offer a helping hand (you do not have to do so personally!) to those who are struggling, particularly newcomers. This will help maintain morale by showing you acknowledge their effort, as well as help avoid forming bad habits and prevent major issues from cropping up.
5. Good at Forward Thinking
With logistics costs on the rise, it is more important than ever to accurately predict trends and possible risks. Being able to grasp the future demand of your products and the issues that may arise while pandering to them will allow you to develop useful contingency plans. Never assume things will work out! Always plan and consider the ‘what if’ questions, particularly when it comes to delivery dates and amounts. Always leave some wiggle room. That way, if there is a last-minute issue, you will not be left incapable of fulfilling an order. Of course, predicting market trends is helpful for more than accident prevention. You will also be able to react promptly to the future demand of your product, and therefore maximise your profits while minimising losses.
6. Taking Responsibility for your Team
It should be obvious. Any person in a managerial position must be capable of handling the demands such a station places on their personality. A good logistics manager needs to be trustworthy and of flawless reputation. When it comes to a job that handles so much money and goods, there will come a time when issues with theft or misplaced items crop up. In such cases, your superiors need to know they can trust you absolutely. In addition, a logistics manager needs to be capable of taking responsibility for the failures of their team. If they always pass the blame on one of their subordinates, it can easily lead to workplace conflict and mounting dissatisfaction. This could easily lead to even more trouble down the road.
7. Good Computer Skills
The world of logistics only grows more dependent on computers to run everything smoothly. The analytical programs, ease of accounting, and the sheer availability of information make it impossible to give up the trend. In our current circumstances, too, with one-fifth of logistics workers refusing to commute again post-pandemic and massive numbers of employees working from home, the importance of computer skills only grows. So, a successful logistics manager must be capable of using the programs that can help them achieve their maximum potential.
Source: SHD Logistics