On eating pie, and other reasons why Pi Day is good for supply chain 


Originally published in http://blog.kinaxis.com


Happy Pi Day! What a great day. You have to love a special day where eating all the pie you want is acceptable, the math jokes are endless, and there are always some clever shirts, memes and memory contests to keep you entertained for weeks.

Not only that, as I see the tweet count climb on Twitter, it is clear that Pi Day isn’t just for mathematicians, engineers and scientists anymore. It has expanded to the masses and can serve as a fun way to get people talking and engaging in STEM conversations.

Case in point, I was driving home from preschool pick up the other day, and attempting to explain PI Day to my son. It was fun for me to find ways to help him understand the difference between pi and pie, and it was a tasty way to open the door to trying to explain the concept. I did consider for a minute teaching him the Lamb Chop earworm The Song that Never Ends to demonstrate the idea of infinite, but upon reflection, I quickly dismissed it.

Pi Day, a celebration of mathematics

So why does it matter that I talk to my preschooler about Pi Day, a celebration of mathematics? He is three and cares more about whether the pie is coconut or lemon. Well, studies show that more exposure to STEM-related activities at an early age helps drive interest as kids grow older and make career decisions. The rise in STEM-related jobs along with an increased importance on data-driven decision making in business functions like marketing, human resources and sales means fostering interest in the areas of science, engineering and math is more important than ever.

Selfishly, it also good for the supply chain. As supply chains move from a tactical function to a strategic role, multiple “soft skill” business functions like marketing and finance intersect with the supply chain, which makes everyone having at least a basic STEM mindset key to corporate success. It’s equivalent to everyone speaking at least some level of the same language.

Better collaboration

When everyone speaks that same language the result is better collaboration, better communication and better business decision making that positively affects the bottom line.

So on this Pi Day lets take the opportunity to encourage the next generation to take an interest in STEM in fun and engaging ways to prepare our kids with the critical skills predicted our future workforce will need. Because knowing where we are now imagine where we will be in 15-20 years when my son is graduating university and entering the workforce.

Here are some ideas to get you started and to avoid hearing Lamb Chop repeatedly in your car for the next couple of weeks.

And for today don’t forget to pick up a pie on your way home!