Seasoned Leadership in Action™ – An Interview with Dr. Muddassir Ahmed!

Dr. Muddassir Ahmed

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At Supply Chain Game Changer we believe in sharing experiences and expertise from people in every industry and from across the globe.  As such we have introduced our “Seasoned Leadership in Action™” Interview series. This interview is with Dr. Muddassir Ahmed, Founder and CEO at SCMDOJO.

Not too long after I launched Supply Chain Game Changer in 2017 it was recognized on a list of the Top Supply Chain sites by feedspot.com. As I studied the list of my peers and their sites, I noticed that one of the names and sites near the top of that list was SCMDOJO, run by Dr. Muddassir Ahmed.

Over time it was clear that in various forums Dr. Muddassir Ahmed, his site and his work featured prominently in the Supply Chain arena. Having had the opportunity to meet and talk with Muddassir I can attest to his great and valuable expertise.

As such we are honoured to present our interview with a great Supply Chain leader and industry influencer, Dr. Muddassir Ahmed.

1. Tell our readers a little about your background and experience.

I have over 16 years of industry experience. Originally from Pakistan/UK, I currently live in Dubai, where I serves as Founder and CEO of SCMDOJO. Before that I worked as Planning and Operations Manager for Bridgestone , Middle East, Africa, Pakistan & Afghanistan for 4 years. In that crucial leadership role, I oversaw supply chain activities that supported 700 million dollars in sales.

Prior to that I worked for Doncasters Group Limited as Logistics Director, with Eaton for 12 years with my last position as Divisional Supply Chain Manager of a half a billion dollar business, and also with Volvo Cars.

I consider myself a persuasive leader, a problem solver, and a strong strategic planner. I never lose sight of the larger picture, even when challenged by business details and impending deadlines. In addition, I focus on delivering results and contributing to revenue growth.

Above all, I believe I am diligent and a hardworking professional and a keen Supply Chain strategist. I founded supply chain platform scmdojo.com – with the motto “Supply Chain Knowledge and Solutions for Everyone”.

SCMDOJO was created with the intention to enable Supply Chain professionals & Supply Chain teams to solve the problems they face in their jobs and business. The enablement comes by providing relevant and best in class knowledge content, practical courses, practical guides, self-assessment tools, and software applications to solve the problems face by the supply chain professionals. 

SCMDOJO has 51,000 of visitors and 77,000-page views a month, 31,200 active Newsletter subscribers, and a tribe of over 95,000 social media followers who are mostly Supply Chain professionals. 

2. What are some of your greatest achievements in Business?

I think my greatest achievements in business are yet to come! So I don’t have a list of my greatest achievements 😊.

However, I can share 3 notable projects and initiatives I am particularly proud of delivering from start to end in the business I have worked with.

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a. Turn-around of Eaton Warwick Plant Supply Chain

Eaton Hydraulics had acquired SME named Integrated hydraulic, with an SME mind set and ways of working. Given I was working with Eaton since 2005 post my Masters, I was very much “Eatonized”. I was hired by the Hydraulics Division Supply Chain Leader to turn around the plant and implement Supply Chain standard Best Practices, develop people competencies and improve overall operational performance of plant to Eaton standards.

When I joined on-time delivery was 56%, average lead time from order entry to shipment was > 12 week, and DOH was 95 Days.

I worked hard in building team competencies, brought in some new talent, implemented processes like S&OP, proper Inventory Management Best Practices, ERP health check, Vendor Managed Inventory, quarterly supplier performance reviews, Materials Management competency assessments and daily lean accountability.

After implementing all of these standard processes, we did manage to achieve and sustain 95% on-time delivery on request, reduced order to shipment lead time to 7 weeks average from 12 weeks, and at the same time reduced DOH to 65 days. All of this meant better customer service performance, with less inventory and quicker lead time. We achieved this in 18 months.

b. Supply Chain Digitalization for Bridgestone MEA

When I joined Bridgestone MEA all order to shipment information between Bridgestone and its 50+ distributors in 37 countries we dealt with were manual, or via email or Microsoft office. It was prone to manual error, it was slow and it was very difficult to find any historic information.

I created a B2B order to shipment platform where everything between distributors and Bridgestone MEA was done in one single platform, pretty much like Amazon! I provided wireframe with customers, used the MVP approach and built the product with customer feedback. The B2B platform received massive recognition in Bridgestone at the corporate level and also with customers.

c. From Muddassir to SCMDOJO

I published my first blog in Aug 2015 after my PhD Degree and my 2nd blog was in Jan 2016! I published a few blogs in between and moved to Dubai in 2018. In the summer of 2018 I changed the name to SCMDOJO and continue to serve the SCMDOJO community to make their work life better, make them more successful, and help them solve problems. 

I extend my thanks to my SCMDOJO followers and fans. I have taken on SCMDOJO as a full time job and continue with our mission and vision of “Supply Chain Knowledge and Solutions for Everyone”

3. How has Business and Supply Chain changed over the course of your career?

When I started my career in 2005 it was very much Purchasing and Planning. The concept of Supply Chain was being established. And it was still very much execution focussed and transactional.

See also  Supply Chain as a Service (SCaaS)!

Over the years Supply Chain has secured a seat on the C-Suite as a strategic function of the business and an enabler of differentiation with competition. 

Also, the focus on digital transformation of business in general has forced Supply Chain leaders to go down that road.

4. What are some of the lessons you learned in your career that you would like to share for others to learn from?

There are many lessons to share, however, there are 3 I would like to share:

  1. All Supply Chain professionals must continue their learning and take the ownership of their personal development plans
  2. Whenever solving a problem, try to think in 4 boxes, People, Process, System and Execution to understand where the problem lies.
  3. Customers always come first! 

5. What challenges facing the world are important to you?

The obvious ones are current political issues like the Russia-Ukraine war, climate change and high shipping prices due to container issues.

What is important to me is that Supply Chain knowledge is still not democratized. It is very expensive, it is archaic and monopolized to certain so-called non-profit organization where CEOs make more than a million dollars in salary! 

And that is the exact issue I am trying to solve, by democratizing Supply Chain knowledge and giving access to as many people as possible , and help them start a career in Supply Chain or grow into bigger and better positions.

6. What is the role of Business, Supply Chain, and Change Leadership in addressing these challenges?

As I mentioned above Supply Chain leaders are now in a position of strategic importance. They can influence decisions at a global level and I believe with time Supply Chain leaders will be influential in driving the Change for Good agenda.

7. What are you working on these days?

I am now 100% focussed on SCMDOJO, with a mission to help as many Supply Chain professionals as possible. SCMDOJO aims to help Supply Chain professionals grow by providing high quality Supply Chain on-demand courses, guides, best practices, tools, and mentoring from industry experts.

8. What advice would you give to people who have a career in, or who are considering joining, Business and/or Supply Chain?

Visit SCMDOJO and you will find everything you need to build a career in Supply Chain, grow and get better in your job.

9. How can people contact you?

The main platform to contact me is LinkedIn by searching Dr. Muddassir Ahmed or click here. However, I am also available in most social media platforms. If you search my handle @muddassirism on TwitterInstagram, TikTok or Facebook you will find me.

Dr. Muddassir Ahmed interview originally published on March 22, 2022.
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