Why You Need a More Diverse Supply Chain Staff

Dr. Nancy Nix
Dr. Nancy Nix
Dana Stiffler
Dana Stiffler

There’s an old saying that perfection is the enemy of the good. Are we losing too many good women Supply Chain candidates because we’re aiming to be perfect?

“Men tend to apply for a job when they perhaps meet 60 percent of the criteria listed for that job because they’re confident, perhaps, that they can figure out the rest of it as they go along. Whereas women tend not to apply unless they meet 100 percent of the criteria.”

Dr. Nancy Nix, executive director emeritus of AWESOME (Achieving Women’s Excellence in Supply Chain Operations, Management, and Education) and Gartner Research Vice President Dana Stiffler explore why your supply chain staff needs to become more diverse, how that will make you a better organization and how you can make that happen.


  • 02:36 — AWESOME
  • 06:30 — Rise in diversity interest
  • 09:41 — The original baseline
  • 11:38 — Latest survey finding
  • 16:07 — Leading sectors for diversity
  • 20:03 — Progress or not?
  • 22:25 — Hindrances to progress
  • 24:44 — What does work?
  • 26:29 — Global findings
  • 30:21 — What should organizations do?
  • 32:31 — What should individuals do?
  • 35:42 — The Business Value of Diversity


AWESOME (Achieving Women’s Excellence in Supply Chain Operations, Management & Education) is the supply chain’s most active and prominent organization focused on advancing women’s supply chain leadership. Involving senior executives in a wide range of supply chain roles (view criteria), AWESOME provides opportunities for networking, collaboration, and development.

  • Facilitates networking among senior leaders
  • Enhances visibility for the accomplishments and expertise of senior supply chain leaders
  • Collaborates with others in the profession to improve the climate for advancing women
  • Inspires and encourages the development of emerging leaders and young professionals

In addition to an annual industry-wide Symposium and other events and programs, AWESOME recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding women supply chain leaders by presenting the AWESOME Legendary Leadership (ALL) Award each year. AWESOME Excellence in Education Scholarships are presented annually to university students in supply chain related fields of study. These scholarships support their attendance at CSCMP and AWESOME events, providing them opportunities to connect with and learn from outstanding women leaders.


Nancy Nix served as Executive Director of AWESOME from 2014 through 2017. Previously, she was Executive Director of the EMBA Program and Professor of Supply Chain Practice at the Neeley School of Business at TCU in Fort Worth, TX. Nancy also served as Director of the Supply and Value Chain Center at TCU, where she led the development of supply chain programs. During her tenure as Director of the SVCC, Nancy established close working relationships with multiple companies, generated funding for the development of TCU’s supply chain programs, led the development of MBA and undergraduate curriculum in supply chain management, and hosted multiple Executive Forums and conferences featuring supply chain experts discussing leading-edge practices. Today, TCU’s Supply and Value Chain programs are recognized among the leading programs in the U.S. In 2017, Nancy received the Distinguished Service Award (DSA) from the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) for her contributions to the field as a practitioner, educator, research leader, speaker, and organizational leader. As Executive Director of AWESOME, Nancy was responsible for all areas of the organization and for implementing key initiatives, including the annual Symposium for leading women in the profession, the AWESOME / Gartner Women in Supply Chain research, and the AWESOME Excellence in Education Scholarship program. She is frequently a moderator, speaker or panelist for industry events powered by AWESOME and at the invitation of other organizations. At TCU, Nancy taught Global Supply Chain Management, Supply Chain Information Technology, and Supply Chain Strategy courses at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. She also led numerous MBA and EMBA study abroad experiences, which included visits with companies and economic development organizations in China, India, and South America. She received an MBA Faculty Award in 2005, an award for innovation in curriculum development in 2006, and the Neeley School of Business Dean’s Teaching Award in 2013. Prior to entering the academic field, Nancy held a number of managerial roles in manufacturing, logistics, procurement and customer service for the DuPont Company. She also spent one and a half years as VP of Logistics for Reliance Industries Ltd., in Mumbai, India.


Dana Stiffler is a Vice President in Gartner Research. She covers supply chain talent strategies, as well as the chief supply chain officer role and individual influence and effectiveness in supply chain leadership. She launched and led the Supply Chain Strategy & Enablers team within Gartner Supply Chain Leaders for three years. Ms. Stiffler’s work at AMR and then Gartner has led to direct, long-term involvement with the supply chain and sourcing leadership of global manufacturers and life sciences and CPG companies, as well as large retailers. She has been quoted in leading business publications, including the New York Times, the Financial Times and Businessweek, and numerous other business and technology publications. Previously, Ms. Stiffler spent three years with Meridien Research (now IDC’s Financial Insights), where she launched the Emerging Trading Technologies practice.