Transportation and Logistics – From Driver to Business Owner

April 1st, 2021 by dayat No comments »

The world is your oyster, that is, if you have the drive, tenacity and goals in place. I would wager to say that I had one of the best jobs in the world, several years back. I was a courier for Federal Express. I got my start in 1990, and upon receiving my badge, completing my driver’s test, I was working at one of the best companies in the world.

My job consisted of loading my truck, plotting my route, and driving around all day, to deliver/pickup packages. Please don’t get me wrong, there were many days that were stressful, and you do have time frames that you have to abide by, but that paled in comparison to the freedom of being out on the road on your own, there’s nothing like it.

So the question arises, “Earl, why in the heck did you leave?” I went through an awakening during my time at Fedex. During my tenure, I started seeing people I began my career with, that were being promoted rather rapidly through the system. I think the last straw was when one of my colleagues who had started with me, became my boss and at this point I knew that I needed to make a change in my life, for the better.

Federal Express, is one of the powerhouses in the Logistics arena. They believe in empowering their employees to continue their education and growth while still maintaining employment. They reimburse your education, if it pertains to the job. I finished out my B.A. degree in Speech Communication, by going to school part time, and taking the remaining 3 classes that I needed during the 1998-1999 year. After that, I pursued a sales career with the company, and I have since moved on. I enjoyed a tremendous career from the TOP Logistics Company in the world. My journey has been wonderful. I have worked hard to continue my education in the area of Supply Chain and Logistics. I currently run my own business, and have enjoyed every minute of it. One thing that I remember from my days as a driver was that I doubted the fact that I was “good enough” to go into Sales or a Sales Management position. I quickly found out that I was, and guess what? You are too!

The following are 5 ways to empower yourself to move from Operations to Sales/Sales Management in the Transportation Industry:

1) Understand that you already have a head up on the competition coming from the Operations Field. You know the system, and why that’s important is, you now are able to explain the nuts and bolts to your customers. From here, you just need to grasp the most efficient way to position that knowledge and relay it in laymen terms to your customer, to provide them with a reason to want to do business with you.

2) Make sure that you express your interest, or more appropriately, your goals to your manager. This is very important because your manager is the key to your development, and many times they have the final say so as to whether you would be a good candidate for a Sales/Sales Management position. I witnessed many good candidates who failed to take this step, and continue to get passed over and eventually become frustrated and quit.

3) Ask to go out in the field with a sales representative for a “Day in The Life.”

The old adage, “The grass is not always greener on the other side,” is very true. Make sure Sales is something that you want to do.

4) Stay motivated and energized. Read self-motivation books, CD’s and DVD’s. This would be a good practice to get into regardless, if you go into Sales or not, because in Sales, like in life, you run into many negative situations, so you will need plenty of rest and positive reinforcement to keep going mentally. I like to read 10 pages a day of a business/self motivation related book, no matter what’s going on in my life.

5) Always maintain your honesty and integrity. Never forget this, as you may encounter times where money may seem too good to pass up, but please keep in mind that the client comes first. As Zig Ziglar says, “If you help enough people get what they want, you will surely get what you want.”