As managing principal of PL Programs, LLC, I and the PL Programs team offer consulting services on operations management and industrial engineering. We focus on warehousing applications including distribution, fulfillment, general warehousing, and reverse logistics. We help operations teams deliver critical projects. Our specific services include warehouse design and optimization, new site implementations, operations project delivery, technology selection and integration, and project management methodology.


I've project-managed a number of new logistics solution implementations and have site-level management experience in distribution operations management. Some examples are below.

  • An 810k square-foot beverage distribution facility with LGV automation. The facility is connected to a manufacturing facility. The site was a greenfield construction project, and was the heart of a supply-chain transformation project for a leading energy drinks company. Similar to the below projects, this included planning, design, and integration of all workstreams (Construction, Operations, IT systems, Organizational development, testing, etc) throughout the company. The facility achieved LEED Gold certification and started and ramped as planned.  
  • A $70M, 1.1m-square-foot (sf) 3PL facility from system and process design, development, deployment, testing, through launch. This included integrating all required disciplines including facility upfit, IT systems, IT infrastructure, LEED Gold certification, Material Handling automation, HR / Organizational readiness, operational process support, and other functions. If it needed to be done to start up a complex operation, we did it. This was a high-profile project in a complex stakeholder environment (client with multiple business units and 3PL) and matrixed management structure. 
  • A 6-facility reverse logistics network implementation including all required functions, similar to the above, to start a new facility per month starting 5 months after kick-off. These sites were between 70K and 120K sf.
  • A small (45K sf) temperature-controlled rail/trucking cross-dock terminal. This included turning a non-temp-controlled facility into an insulated, temp-controlled site and then operating that site.
  • Regular warehouse operations in high-volume facilities for best-in-class retail, e-commerce, and temp-controlled produce companies.
  • Process changes in roles at multiple facilities resulting in significant improvements in productivity, accuracy, and various customer-facing metrics. Some of the most impressive changes included implementing a Lean supermarket system at a rail receiving dock, resulting in 25% improvement in unloading time and 30% reduction in required dock labor. Then we moved the inventory team from auditing outbound shipments to auditing inbound unloads and our defect rates fell by an order of magnitude.
  • Change management for rollouts of performance performance management systems, incentives, daily management, Lean practices, and getting buy-in during high-volume retail operations.

I've received recognition within my companies, from clients, and then been solicited to run projects after leaving. I'd be happy to discuss your new site implementation and how I can help. 

Project management philosophy

Successful projects do need the PMBOK fundamentals. I also keep some more specific or colorful things in mind:

  • Our job is to provide clarity and structure.
  • It's easier to solve problems earlier. The cost to fix a defect increases in orders of magnitude the further it goes. This is known as technical or management debt.
  • Transparency solves problems. Trust solves problems. Raising issues solves problems. Hoping that a risk self-corrects will cause more problems.
  • Provide context to decisions to enable the big ones first.
  • But—for want of a nail, the kingdom was lost. Go into detail. 
  • Provide context to facts to connect the current state to implications. 
  • People think and meet non-linearly. Help them stay structured.
  • Make it visual where you can, especially any "black boxes" of work. Quantify everything. But don't be afraid to write papers instead of using PowerPoint where detail, logic, and explanation are needed.
  • Putting more people on a problem doesn't necessarily get it done more quickly. H/t Frederick Brooks.
  • It's helpful to think of probabilities, not certainties, in planning. Kill failure paths with buffers. H/t Lawrence Leach.
  • Two groups of smart people can have intelligible conversations with the same words about completely different things. Eliminate ambiguity.
  • All plans run through IT. And Managing A Programming Project is a great place to start to understand IT projects.
  • User Interface has a huge payback, because it determines whether the people use the tools. Make it easy and obvious and doable, and they'll do it. If it's hard, they won't. This applies to everything from throwing trash away to change control to document retention to meeting planning.

Contact me at paul (at) with any inquiries.