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As an Inventory Manager, <br>What Can I Learn from The Walking Dead?

learn-walking-dead-0415-banner We all know the Zombie Apocalypse is going to happen – frankly, it’s overdue. We just don’t know exactly when the world-as-we-know-it will cease to exist. It could happen tomorrow or decades down the road. Not having a firm undead deadline is bothersome, but don’t use this as an excuse to delay preparations. Logic tells us that the best time to prepare for the arrival of the brain-eating horde is well before they actually show up, aggressively demanding a snack. Bonus: Good apocalypse skills translate well into pre-apocalypse inventory management strategies. So even if the zombies don’t materialize in your lifetime, your preparation and studies won’t go to waste.

So Let’s Get Ready For Those Zombies

iStock_000028723586Your first step, according to those who spend a lot of time thinking about these sorts of bizarre scenarios –  is to develop an inventory of items necessary to your survival. After you’ve figured out what you need, acquire the items. Sharpen your supply chain management skills by sorting out issues like quality assurance, capacity and capabilities, and proper stocking of high-demand items that will have short shelf lives (due to demand or perishability) against the items that you can buy in bulk and store safely. Give a little thought to where you’ll be hunkering down during the dark times, and learn a few helpful skills such as first aid, methods of alternative energy production, and perhaps macramé. These issues are not typically keys to successful inventory management, but remember: work/life balance is important. Hobbies are good. During your pre-doom downtime, you’ll also want to watch a lot of zombie movies and TV shows. This is the best way to educate yourself about the realities of life after the dead reanimate. You’ll happily discover that many of the skill sets you already possess as an inventory manager will be very helpful in your new post-apocalyptic existence and vice-versa.

"...among the many useful things that one can learn from The Walking Dead is the importance of proactively managing your inventory.”

For example; among the many useful things that one can learn from The Walking Dead is the importance of proactively managing your inventory. Reviews of the Walking Dead game, “Survival Instinct,” praised its “elegant inventory management system” – tracking, managing and using inventory wisely is a key part of winning the game. And, given that basic survival is going to become your new full-time job, you won’t have a lot of free time to fiddle around with manual inventory management processes or systems that were never intended for inventory management (i.e. Excel). You need to be ruthlessly efficient to survive, and you will need to compensate for the inevitable human errors brought on by the shock of suddenly becoming a snack pack.

Related Article: Proper Inventory Management Drives Economic Growth

Hint: if you change a few of the details, it’s obvious that your current life is quite similar to the typical zombie apocalypse scenario. While your competitors may not have a craving to consume you literally, they aren’t rooting for your continuing survival and success either. Sharpening your competitive edge pre-apocalypse requires a slightly different and more subtle skill set than ruthlessly battling zombies, but errors and poor planning will impact your success, before and after the apocalypse. Choose the tools that ramp up your efficiency and intelligence, and help you do more with less, now, so that you can not only survive but thrive. Dealing with the undead is challenging, but, as any motivational speaker will advise, embrace the challenge. Own that zombie apocalypse!