Dov Shenkman: A Result-Oriented & Innovative Executive Building a Strong Legacy

Top 10 Most Influential People in Supply Chain, 2023

Dov Shenkman, Vice President of Global Supply Chain at Medtronic comes with extensive experience and success in operations leadership, spanning multiple domestic and international industries and markets.

Dov is an innovative and resourceful leader and also highly experienced in developing and executing turnaround strategies with high impact results in manufacturing, retail, service and distribution-oriented businesses involving global focus.
A brief about Medtronic and their mission.

Medtronic plc, headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, is a leading global healthcare technology company that boldly attacks the most challenging health problems facing humanity by searching out and finding solutions.

The Medtronic Mission has been deeply embedded in the corporate culture over the past 60 years and is centered around these six words: alleviate pain, restore health, and extend life – uniting a global team of 90,000+ passionate people across 150 countries. Their technologies and therapies treat numerous health conditions and include solutions covering these areas: cardiovascular, medical surgical, neuroscience, and diabetes.

From an area of focus, Medtronic offers products that are aligned with its strategy: innovating meaningful therapies, resolving inequities in healthcare access, and delivering value-based healthcare.

As a function within Medtronic, the Global Operations and Supply Chain organization plays a pivotal role in connecting innovation and technology to customers and patients everywhere.

Dov is responsible for developing and implementing the global supply chain strategy and performance at Medtronic. He leads end-to-end planning, distribution, logistics and trade operations while providing guidance on the expansion of their supply chain capabilities, processes, and programs.

Dov Shenkman’s life before Medtronic

Over the past 30 years, Dov has had the opportunity to work and consult with companies in the Fortune 500 as well as smaller entities, ranging from retail to automotive and now to healthcare. “This exposure has allowed me to cross pollinate and transfer learnings to other industries and markets,” he states.

Dov feels fortunate to have worked with various companies, within domestic and international industries and markets, serving in roles that enabled him to learn and experience different approaches to problem solving.

Professional impact & building a legacy.

Dov says that his greatest accomplishment is when he builds process capabilities and when he is coaching and empowering talent.

People are everything in an organization. People make everything possible, so getting everyone aligned is critical. They must buy into the new vision and the changes that they must make happen to realize that vision. It is these outputs that develop long-lasting building blocks that evolve and improve over time. “When I influence these outcomes, I am paying it forward – leaving a foundation that generations of future leaders can build and improve upon – thus leaving behind their own legacies,” he notes.

As a result of having a career that has given Dov diverse experiences, over the years he has developed five guiding principles that now define what it takes to make successful supply chains work:

  • Customer-back transformation: building a vision by working backwards from the customer value allows you to identify processes and capabilities needed to deliver it efficiently.
  • Transform the value chain: connecting the end-to-end model from customer back to suppliers. Leverage Integrated Business Planning to make the E2E connection.
  • Segmentation: averages are misleading, segment and target
  • Leverage technology: whether through digitalization, automation, and AI, technology is an enabler for speed and process transformation.
  • Be quick and proactive: when possible, focus on proactive indicators and frequent planning rather than creating and supporting a constant reactive environment.

“I have tried to apply these throughout my career and will leave these as part of my contribution to supply chain activities that I have had the privilege of leading,” Dov says.

Success for Dov Shenkman

Dov defines success as having built a foundation, with sustainable capabilities, that delivers long-term results. The foundation is built on efficiently providing proven customer value while at the same time, building brand preference and loyalty. It is not just about getting a product; it is the entire customer experience. For Dov, he feels that this is what establishes a long-lasting competitive advantage for the company.

“I feel it is important to pave the way so that future leaders can focus their time on building improvements,” he states.

Dov describes himself as a ‘curious’ person who never stops learning, whether it’s from an experience, a colleague, or a member of his team.

Resolving challenges to extend growth.

Over the course of his career, Dov feels that one of his biggest lessons learned has been how to lead and inspire a team to overcome challenges.

“Overcoming challenges together builds a stronger team because it leads to better collaboration and provides opportunity to demonstrate stronger leadership,” says Dov.  “Unlocking and inspiring the team’s potential pushes and build confidence to deliver the extraordinary.”

He believes that challenges are opportunities presented in a unique way. He feels that the key is to stop seeing challenges as problems but start seeing them as opportunities.  Challenges force the need to become more resourceful and creative and when obstacles appear, his philosophy is to see them as opportunities to find creative solutions to surmount them.  In his view, the bigger the challenge the bigger is the satisfaction of overcoming it.

He also believes that the key to being a relatable leader is to never lose optimism and have a sense of humor.

Managing Work and Personal Life Effectively

Dov believes that having a balance between professional and personal life is critical in being able to achieve goals and being successful in both aspects. He also believes that it is up to the individual to define what that balance means to them.

Dov’s guiding principle is that personal time is sacred and that for him, it is imperative to be present – whether with loved ones or even just by himself. He also applies this concept to his team and will only reach out to them if it is an emergency. Dov encourages his team to take time to recenter and refresh their energy as he believes mental and physical health is what enables them to do what they do every day.

Plans for Future

Dov and his team are focused on two things that will help shape the future of the Medtronic supply chain. The first is having one global organization, operating with greater efficiency, running the physical distribution of their products. Second, they are investing in end-to-end planning processes that improve their planning capabilities through better connections of existing assets and operations to meet customer demand.

“Our intent is to develop an integrated supply chain organization that helps transform the delivery of healthcare technology and turn it into a competitive advantage. We are focused on delivering on-time-in-full to our customers, patients and partners while optimizing costs and reducing disruption risk. And most importantly, we are empowering our teams to do their best work by providing them with the tools they need to deliver and excel,” he explains.

As a leader, Dov’s goal is to leave something better than how he found it. He wishes to leave a sustainable foundation that can continue to be advanced and improved as part of the legacy to the work that he and his team accomplished.

Dov advises aspiring supply chain leaders to be ready for anything. The past three years have taught us that anything can happen – if it has not yet, chances are it will. He also advises them to be flexible, agile, resilient and have a creative vision. “Stay true to the vision and you can make it through to the other side,” he adds.