Business of Craft Season 3 Episode 4 Supply Chains and Labor Issues


Have you been thinking about how your fiber or fabric business can continue to adapt and thrive? Well, you’re listening to the right show because that’s our theme for Business of Craft season three…Resiliency!

Chad Hendricks is the founder and president of Brand Outcomes, an agency focused on helping businesses recruit and retain truck drivers.  He also hosts the podcast “Recruit and Retain: Trucking Edition” on the same topic. 

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#1 Chad, let’s start by tapping into your expertise about why supply chain issues have been so challenging for manufacturers. For those listening who may just be on the consumer side, or our B2B clients who might not understand the complexities, give us a layman’s explanation of what’s been happening in this space? [2:45]

#2 Do you think things were running smoothly before COVID or is this all due to COVID? (6:00)

#3 Of course if you can’t get products on time through the supply chain, that impacts sales because you can’t invoice if you can’t deliver, right? (8:30)

#4 What would you advise the B2C audience about tips or tricks you have to become more resilient when it comes to supply chain issues? (9:48)

#5 Do you think there are certain markets– say China for example- that are struggling more than other regions in delivering goods to the United States? Or is it ubiquitous worldwide? (14:57)

#6 Do you have any crystal ball as to when you think supply chain issues will begin to resolve or is this going to be the new normal? (16:40)

#7 We have also seen issues related to labor shortage issues and I think that impacts every sector, including crafts. How have you been helping your clients navigate through that problem? (21:46)

#8 I know you mostly operate in the trucking space, but I’m sure there are some crossovers to employees in general so what other solutions have you seen be successful in the recruitment and retention of employees? (26:52)

#9 What are some of the mechanics on getting feedback about how you’re communicating and executing the values of your company? (28:45)

#10 Let’s talk quickly about marketing for retention. I’m sure there are do’s and don’ts when it comes to advertising a position, interviewing the candidates and making an offer. Where do you think most employers stumble the most on the path to recruiting employees? (34:00)

#11 I know you also work extensively with immigration to find employees from overseas. Tell us a little more about that? (43:00)

Key Takeaways:

  • On the supply side, there are a few things you can do to manage your inventory flow.
    • Build better relationships with your suppliers – make an effort to get to know them (if you’re attending h+h americas it’s a chance to meet some of your vendors face-to-face and start building or strengthening that relationship)
    • Diversify your product offerings so you have more suppliers you’re working with.
    • Look at your inventory practices. You may need to carry a bit more than usual because of long lead times, but if you place massive orders it may stress the system further and leave you with lots of inventory in stock at various points which can be costly.
  • There are a few levers we can pull to ease the problems related to retention of labor such as: knowing your company values and making sure you include employees in the process of staying true to them. Chad does weekly one-on-one meetings with employees, has an annual “team summit” and hires an outside consultant to keep his finger on the pulse of how well he’s staying true to company values.
  • Top areas where employers stumble in hiring:
    • Identify the top objections to working for you and address them
    • Ask if a benefit has value to an employee
    • Differentiate your vision for the company
    • Utilize assessments such as the predictive index in hiring
    • Think about creating a well-rounded team rather than every employee being a cookie cutter version of the same person
  • Don’t forget about immigrants in your hiring pool. Several visa options available to bring in workers who might have vast wealth of knowledge or contributions


Connect with Chad:  Brand Outcomes | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn