Bronco Spotlight: John Hayward
TRACK Rotational Development Program at General Motors
The TRACK program is a tw-year rotational program within the Global Purchasing and Supply Chain organization at GM. The program consists of four 6-month rotations in areas like procurement, logistics, supply planning, tactical operations, plant operations, and trade compliance.
If you had a campus job or internship, how did they impact your career development?
I had two internships, the first at Marathon Petroleum Corporation, and the second at General Motors. Both internships were fantastic! Getting hands on experience in the field you are going into accelerates career development, expands your network, and gives you a flavor of what life after college will look like.
What activities, resources, or people helped you prepare for your career?
The professors at the university helped me quite a bit. I have close relationships with a lot of my professors which enabled me to get more out of their classes and it opened doors for me that a student who didn’t have those relationships would not get. I also have few mentors that are outstanding leaders in the supply management field which has been a tremendous help.
Which of your skills had the biggest impact on your success?
Networking and work ethic. Many students in my graduating class from WMU and other universities are very smart. To become great, you need to work hard and do things other students aren’t willing to do. You also have to expand your network with the right intentions. In the business world, leveraging a network of people to help others and to help your career is a very powerful force, a force that not every college graduate has tapped into.
What experiences impacted the choice of your career path?
The internships, getting the hands on experience at companies you are interested in working for is key. There are a lot of unknowns when going to work for a company, what will the culture be like? Does my boss go out of the way to mentor/coach me? Are the senior leaders interested in the new hires? Is there room for growth of the company and myself? Many of these questions you have to answer for yourself and the best way to do it is at an internship.
What advice do you have for others pursuing a career similar to yours?
Get involved on campus. The best way to get connected with the Integrated Supply Management program at WMU is to join the Supply Chain Management Association (SCMA). At SCMA you can meet other students in the major, expand your network and learn if supply chain management is the right career path for you!