April 2019 Print

APICS Twin Cities Chapter Newsletter

This newsletter has the latest news and updates for 2019.

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Professional Development Meeting

April 2019 Professional Development Meeting

Sociable Cider Werks - Tour and Taproom
Minneapolis, MN

Wednesday, April 10, 2019


You’ve likely visited a brewery and taproom before.  But have you been to Minneapolis’ leading urban cidery?  Come and find out how Sociable Cider Werks became the dominant cidery in the Cities.  The journey consists of some challenges (what is the MN legal definition of a cider?), some drama (where do you get bitter apples when other cideries are popping up and taking your stash?), and some victories (how did they leave out malt?). 

Supply, demand, constraints, decisions, pain and smiles will be shared (liquid form optional). 

Sign up now!

*Space is limited to the first 70 Registrants!

Link to details and registration info.

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save the date!

APICS Spring Seminar 2019

Tues & Wed, May 14th and 15th, 2019
Crowne Plaza West, Plymouth, MN


  • Great Negotiator or Great Negotiation: Become the Strategic Negotiator


  • Emotional Intelligence: Why it is Your Unique Advantage as a Supply Chain Professional


  • Mastering Complexities of a Global Supply Chain


  • Supplier Cost Reduction



Mark Hehl is an international consultant, author and public speaker. He is author of the soon to be released book Amusing Confessions of an International Consultant.  His efforts have helped companies successfully set up and improve operations in various countries. Mr. Hehl holds a BS Degree in Electrical Engineering from the New York Institute of Technology and a MS Degree in Management from the Polytechnic Institute of New York. Mark has taught International Business courses at Harper College and has conducted multiple webinars for Industry Week.
Julie Kowalski, is an energetic, passionate, spirited coach and trainer who brings over 25 years of first-hand experience of what it takes to start and run successful businesses, as well as, earn and retain customer and employee loyalty. Julie has worked with, and continues to work with a wide variety of business owners and executives from family-owned businesses to Fortune 100 companies. She has also personally started and successful managed multi-million dollar companies.


2 Speakers + 4 Topics = MORE VALUE

Register for 1 Day or both! Group Discounts Available!

Seating is Limited!  Watch for details coming soon!

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Member News

welcome to the Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM)

For over 60 years, supply chain professionals and organizations have relied on APICS to deliver world-class certification. But that was just the beginning. We’re excited to welcome you to the new Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM).

Spend some learning about the new organization that we're so proud to be a part of!

LEARN MORE HERE - visit ascm.org

Learn more about the Expanded Offerings of ASCM at:

Learning and Development
New courseware, certifications, career resources!

Corporate Transformation
New Corporate-focused programs and development!

Making an Impact
New Humanitarian Programs - Giving Back!

Need help navigating the new ASCM/APICS Membership Offerings?  That's what we're here for.  Contact us at 763-413-2513 or [email protected]

APICS Twin Cities Chapter receives recognition at the APICS Top 50 Chapter Meeting
January 2019 - Orlando, FL

Abe Eshkenazi, CEO, Beckie MacDonnell, PDC Chair, Natalie Dietz, & John Melbye

John Melbye, President, and Natalie Dietz, Executive Director, for the Twin Cities Chapter accepted the 2019 North American Top Chapter for Membership Award (presented to the Chapter that had the largest number of members with a length of membership greater than 2 years).  We are very proud to accept this award on behalf of YOU, our members, who made it possible by your continued support through membership renewal, volunteer hours, and participation in chapter events.  We are honored and humbled to be the recipient of one of three awards made this year.  THANK YOU!

Interested in getting involved with the great team of volunteers who make it all happen?  Perhaps you want to contribute to setting the direction of your local chapter?  We are always looking for a diverse group of volunteer committee members and board leaders.  Contact the Chapter Office at 763-413-2513 or [email protected]

One of the changes under the new ASCM organization is the expansion of learning opportunities via partnerships with cutting-edge thought leaders.  ASCM/APICS and the Demand Driven Institute is the first of these partnerships.  The Twin Cities Chapter is among the first North American APICS Chapters to offer Demand Driven Certification Programs.  DDMRP is a proven methodology to manage the chaos created by constant changes in demand and the limits of traditional MRP planning.  It has been proven (in companies both large and small) to improve customer service, reduce lead times, reduce inventory, lower total cost, and change the focus of plannners from reacting to continual MRP nervousness (ie putting out fires) to anticipating and managing priorities.  If you haven't taken the time to learn more about it, NOW is the time!  Visit the Demand Driven Institute's website to learn more and view the testimonials and case studies of numerous companies.  Contact the Twin Cities Chapter for more information.

We are offering Demand Driven Workshops locally NOW! 

Check out one of our workshops or contact us to talk about doing an on-site workshop for your team!   

Upcoming Local Demand Driven Events:

Supply Chain is where it's at...

Check out these sites that we found quite interesting and relevant:

Supply Chain Digest

The Lean Thinker - check out Mark Rosenthal's blog!

Supply Chain Management Review

NEW! Supply Chain Illustrated - check out John Melbye's blog!

Thinking Supply Chain - check out the APICS Blog - Insights, analysis and ideas to advance your supply chain. Join the conversation.

Feel free to share your interesting reading on our LInkedIn page

Your Chapter is Platinum!

Chapter Management Excellence is an integral component to enhancing the member experience. Successful APICS chapters provide their members with opportunities for stellar education, career development, and networking.

The APICS Chapter Benchmarking and Reporting (CBAR) program recognizes chapters that have exceeded minimum standards and exemplify excellence in overall chapter management. We are proud to announce the APICS Twin Cities Chapter received the 2018 CBAR Platinum Award designation, an admirable accomplishment for an APICS chapter. As a member of an APICS Platinum Award Winning Chapter, the CBAR designation signifies your chapter’s commitment to providing an exceptional membership experience. APICS Twin Cities Chapter has been recognized with this award for the past 24 consecutive years!

We are pleased to make the benefits of APICS student membership even more accessible to our future leaders in the industry!

APICS offers a variety of education, certification, and endorsement programs to enhance your professional career and improve your organization’s bottom line. Whether you need to streamline your supply chain, master the basics of materials and operations management or build your knowledge in logistics, transportation and distribution, APICS has the right program for you.

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Calendar of Events





  • NEW! Spring seminar 2019, Tues & Wed, 5/14/19 & 5/15/19, 8am-5pm, 2-days, Registration Deadline: 5/7/19 - 2 Speakers, 4 Topics - attend one or both days!  Details Coming Soon!




>Link to the Events Calendar.

Learn about:

CPIM - CSCP - CLTD - Continuing Education - IHE - Seminars


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Welcome New Members

February 2019:

  • Dylan Anderson, Starkey Hearing Technologies
  • Aaron Anthony  
  • Jeremy Apikelis  
  • Julio Batista  
  • Margaret Baumann  
  • Megan Boyd, CertainTeed
  • Evette Brendalen  
  • Gwen Carlson  
  • Spenser Fauks, Starkey Hearing Technologies
  • Jackson Fulton  
  • Isabel Glowac  
  • Eric Helvie  
  • Koree Holme, 3M
  • William Kealy, Ceva
  • Bonnie Keyworth, SPS Commerce
  • Gregory Lambert  
  • SreeRam Mangalampalli  
  • Derek Matson  
  • Michael Merriam  
  • Sarah Mevissen, CertainTeed
  • John Nitti, Nonin Medical Inc.
  • Karl Otto, Cargill
  • Hisila Shrestha, DiaSorin
  • Nicholas Stein, Northrop Grumman
  • Thomas Swanson  
  • Evan Weiss  
  • Matthew Zeien, Kurt Mfg. Co.


January 2019:

  • Crystal Berg
  • Douglas Bley
  • Margie Brink, Cantel - Medivators
  • Kevin Conniff, CSCP
  • Brooks Grebin
  • Matthew Greseth
  • Stephanie Lisson
  • Julie Ann Lo
  • Brandon Olson
  • Santiago Osorio
  • Chad Rempe, Kraus-Anderson Construction Company
  • Thomas Richey
  • Maxim Rivkin
  • Talesha Roehler, BevSource
  • Kristi Schaut
  • Alan Sturtz
  • Ibrahim Thiam
  • Matt Wallentiny
  • Brayden Witt, CSCP

December 2018:

  • Roger Akem
  • Nikki Bakker, Upsher-Smith Laboratories, LLC
  • Steve Boyum, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Eric Chuhanic, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Nick Consoer, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Greta Dalzell, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Gary Dobbs, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Mark Falls
  • Corey Fossen, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Dalton Graff, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Marixa Gregory, rixamix
  • Kristina Head
  • Hoa Hoang, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Wyatt Johnson, CH Robinson
  • Judy Keefe, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Vicheth Khim, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Stacey Koehnen, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Ethan Larson
  • Eric Mattsson, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Howard Matzke
  • Sam Neale
  • Joseph Nicholas
  • Eric Peterson, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Jessica Peterson, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Mike Reber, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Emmanuel Redd, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Michael Reinitz
  • Erin Rettenmaier, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Garrett Riebling
  • Heidi Ries, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Luke Rongitsch
  • Monsede Sehlouan
  • Michelle Singleton
  • Cindy Sok, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Mike Stram, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Justin Tucker, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Mmeny Udomah, United Technologies Aerospace
  • Matthew Vannelli, CH Robinson
  • Lucas Walford


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Congratulations Newly Certified Members



March 2019
  • Aditya Bhoraskar, CPIM - Cummins
  • Mark Edward Tegeler, CSCP


February 2019
  • Miranda Boyadjis, CPIM, CSCP
  • Karina Canales Ruiz, CPIM
  • Elliot Barquest, CSCP
  • Connor Bonk, CSCP
  • Patrick Pylvainen, CSCP - SPS Commerce
  • Eden Ng, CPIM
  • Nathaniel Coffman, CPIM - 3M

January 2019
  • Brayden Witt, CSCP
  • Jordan Drenttel, CSCP
  • Kevin Conniff, CSCP

December 2018
  • Jena Megal, CPIM
  • Joshua Schweitzer, CPIM - Vaddio
  • Jane Lehtinen, CPIM - Shopjimmy.com
  • Karteek Lingam, CPIM
  • Jordan Gamst, CPIM - Ergotron
  • Kevin Peterson, CPIM - Vaddio
  • Michael Crowley, CPIM - 3M
  • Cody Tucker, CPIM - Hollywood Fashion Secrets

November 2018
  • Krysta Peterson, CPIM - 3M
  • Kathryn Curtis, CPIM - 3M
  • Kristen Mangan, CPIM - Midwest Sign
  • Caleb Nyquist, CPIM - 3M
  • Jessica Durfee, CSCP
  • Chuck Nemer, CPIM, CSCP, CLTD - The Guru of Biz

We had the privilege to recognize these recently certified members at our Professional Development Meeting:

Congratulations, Jane Lehtinen, CPIM
(pictured with John Melbye, President)

Congratulations Joshua Moss, CPIM
(pictured with Orville Vaughn, Vice President Education)

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Board of Directors Column

april 2019 Board Column

John Augustiniak, CSCP

Vice President Academic & Career Development

APICS / ASCM & Continuous Learning

The last 12 months have been very exciting for both APICS and our local chapter. With the rebranding to ASCM and new members joining our chapter and the Board of Directors, there is a lot to look forward to as we begin 2019!

The constantly changing supply chain landscape provides us as an organization a plethora of learning opportunities to bring to our careers. Being an APICS member provides us the advantage of a front-row seat to what is happening in the world of supply chain at companies both big and small. It doesn’t matter if we are new to the supply chain profession or decades deep into our career, it is important that we are constantly learning to stay competitive in the job market and able to deliver new insights in the workplace. Whether the learning comes from APICS certifications, informational interviews, or formalized degree programs, you are making an investment in yourself and your career that will pay dividends in the long run.

As demand for educated supply chain professionals has increased over the years, the Twin Cities APICS chapter has been able to provide our members with learning opportunities through seminars, certifications, networking events, and professional development meetings. Direct access to the latest supply chain trends, topics, and ideas from a diverse range of supply chain professionals would have been a great resource as I was determining the type of supply chain career I wanted to pursue during my undergraduate studies!

Looking ahead to the rest of 2019, I will be focused on strengthening our chapter’s relationship with young professionals and university students in the Twin Cities. I believe there is a tremendous amount of value for both the chapter and students to be gained as both parties share their perspectives on the industry. With the supply chain field being so broad, there is always something to be learned from another connection in the industry. I am excited to see the progress our chapter can make as we cultivate our connections in our community and increase the diversity of perspectives at our events. 

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THE UN-COMFORT ZONE with Robert Wilson

Bottom-Up Innovation Starts With Top-Down Commitment

A culture of innovation only works when everyone is included.

A few weeks ago my son shared a story with me that was just the sort of case study I was seeking for an article on bottom-up innovation.

The chronicle was about a major toothpaste company that had a problem with their factory. It seems that a number of boxes were being shipped without a tube of toothpaste in them. Retailers were complaining, and word got back to the CEO. He ordered the maintenance department to investigate the trouble.

The mechanics couldn’t find a specific problem in the production line and recommended the company outsource it to an engineering consulting firm. The consultants studied the factory and came back with a solution. They would install a computerized measuring system that would employ a precision digital scale to detect underweight boxes. Upon finding one, the computer would automatically shut down the production line, and sound an alarm bell with flashing lights. A factory worker would then remove the empty box from the scale then press a button to restart the line. All told, it took six months and eight million dollars.

One of the new benefits of the system was that it generated a daily report that was delivered to the executive office. The results were everything they had hoped for; after the scales were installed there were no more empty boxes shipped to the stores.

After several weeks had passed, the CEO decided to review some of the daily reports. He saw that after three weeks the electronic scales were not detecting any empty boxes. They should have been catching several dozen a day. He sent his quality control department to look into it and they returned stating that indeed all the boxes on the conveyor belt that passed over the scales were full.

The perplexed CEO could not accept that a chronic problem of empty boxes had simply disappeared, and decided to go see for himself. When he got to the section of the factory line with the new scale, he noticed that a few feet ahead of it was a $20 desk fan blowing the empty boxes off the conveyor belt into a bin. When he inquired about it, one of the factory workers admitted it was his idea because he got tired of being frequently interrupted from his work just to go over and restart the line every time the alarm went off.

Of course the conclusion I want you to draw is obvious: if the company had consulted the factory line workers first they could have saved millions of dollars. A consultant’s motivation may be to make more money from a complex solution. A common sense solution, a low-tech “simple solution” is more likely to come from someone who is closer to the problem on a daily basis. The question is how do companies go about getting ideas from their everyday employees? I’ll respond to that in a moment.

First I want to note that I diligently sought the origin of the above story and the name of the toothpaste company, but all I could dig up was Snopes reporting that it is a legend. Nevertheless, it still has verisimilitude because there are many stories like it. Sometimes the downline suggestion or idea is appreciated, but many times it isn’t.

Here’s one that was reported on Reddit.com in 2014 by kaosChild: “I worked at an aluminum products company while I was a student on part of a machine production line. The machines jam fairly frequently and in order to stop it on this particular day I found a way to take a 4"x4" piece of cardboard to a belt that made the machine run perfectly. My supervisor came after several hours and got mad at me when she saw the mod and took it out. The machine promptly went back to jamming every 3 minutes, but policy was that people can't do that sort of thing. I understand some people might come up with bad mod ideas, but when the machine jams it spits out aluminum shards that do occasionally end up in the product. My production went down, my quality went down, the amount of unjamming I had to do went up.”

Here are two stories where the ideas were valued: the Swan Vesta match company was looking for a way to save money, when a frontline employee suggested that they remove the striker strip from one side of the matchbox. The idea was implemented and millions of dollars were saved. At the El Cortez hotel in San Diego, originally built in the 1920s, a bell boy during the 1950s suggested they add an elevator to the outside of the building. The idea was applied and the hotel built the world’s first glass-walled exterior elevator which immediately became a sensational attraction.

Unfortunately, at many companies ideas and suggestions get shot down, ignored, or worse - punished! Yet those same companies claim they want new ideas that will improve the bottom-line. And, in today’s competitive world marketplace - all companies need new ideas. The problem is overcoming red tape, regulation, and control; and as is often the case: the bigger the company - the bigger the bureaucracy! The solution is creating a culture of innovation.

In order for a culture of innovation to succeed, employees - all down the line - must believe that the company appreciates their intelligence, resourcefulness, and creativity. They also must believe that the company wants and values their ideas. Without these factors a company will not be able to generate the stream of ideas they need to stay competitive.

In addition, there needs to be a system for suggesting ideas, along with a system for testing and implementing them. The system also needs to acknowledge and reward those suggestions - even if they are not accepted or utilized. Employees are motivated to contribute their insights if they see that their ideas are taken seriously. If they are not, then the flow of ideas will stop. People naturally seek out ways to save time and materials, as well as other efficiencies, and if encouraged they will share these observations with management.

Toyota is a good example of a company with a successful culture of innovation. The average Toyota employee makes over 100 improvement suggestions every year. With thousands of employees that adds up to millions of ideas that have made Toyota one of the most successful automobile manufacturers in the world.

Amazon will reward its employees for an idea - even if it fails - if they have put time and effort into developing the idea. Now that’s a concept that has driven Amazon’s explosive growth.

In order to generate bottom-up innovation, there must be a top-down commitment from a company’s management to maintain a culture of innovation. Without the commitment, it just won’t work.

Robert Evans Wilson, Jr. is an author, humorist-speaker and innovation consultant. He works with companies that want to be more competitive and with people who want to think like innovators. Robert is the author of ...and Never Coming Back, a psychological thriller-novel about a motion picture director; the inspirational book: Wisdom in the Weirdest Places; and The Annoying Ghost Kid a humorous children’s book about dealing with a bully. For more information on Robert, please visit http://www.jumpstartyourmeeting.com

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ASCM Conference

save the date!

ASCM 2019

Join us in Las Vegas from September 16-18, 2019

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