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The Logistics of Logistics Podcast

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The Logistics of Logistics podcast is dedicated to exploring how things get places. Join our host, Joe Lynch, for conversations with the people who get them there. Joe talks with logistics and transportation industry leaders about innovation, technology, trends, and the future of freight.

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The Logistics of Logistics podcast is dedicated to exploring how things get places. Join our host, Joe Lynch, for conversations with the people who get them there. Joe talks with logistics and transportation industry leaders about innovation, technology, trends, and the future of freight.

iTunes Ratings

13 Ratings
Average Ratings
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Go Joe!

By MattAJ93 - Mar 15 2019
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This is a great podcast with really quality content and insightful guests. If you’re in the logistics industry you should get familiar with Joe’s work and his podcast.

iTunes Ratings

13 Ratings
Average Ratings
12
1
0
0
0

Go Joe!

By MattAJ93 - Mar 15 2019
Read more
This is a great podcast with really quality content and insightful guests. If you’re in the logistics industry you should get familiar with Joe’s work and his podcast.
Cover image of The Logistics of Logistics Podcast

The Logistics of Logistics Podcast

Latest release on Mar 06, 2020

All 46 episodes from oldest to newest

Building Strategic Partnerships with 3PLs and Carriers with Don Dovgin

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Building Strategic Partnerships with 3PLs and Carriers with Don Dovgin

Don Dovgin and Joe Lynch discuss the advantages of building strategic partnerships with 3PLs and carriers. Shippers who develop strategic partnerships with 3PLs and carriers get better service and lower costs than shippers that switch from one carrier to another based on the lowest cost.

About Don Dovgin

Don is the Director of Engagements at Maine Pointe. Don was born and raised in the Chicago metropolitan area. Don started his career working as a mechanic at American Airlines. Don rapidly moved up the org chart at AA and eventually landed in the freight and cargo division where he learned first-hand about air freight, distribution, trucking, and supply chain management. Don earned both his undergrad in business and his masters degree at night school. Prior to joining Maine Pointe, Don held a series of positions with increasing responsibility at Accenture, Ryder, Transportation Management Group, and Roadnet/Omnitracs.

About Maine Pointe

Maine Pointe is an implementation focused consulting company that specializes in procurement, logistics, and operations. Their goal is to accelerate measurable improvements in EBITDA, cash and growth across the plan-buy-make-move-fulfill supply chain to deliver the greatest value to customers and stakeholders at the lowest cost to business.

The Consequences of Not Building Strategic Partnerships with 3PLs and Carriers
  • Service failures including shipments that are late, lost or damaged.
  • No customization because neither the shipper nor the provider has invested in the relationship.
  • Capacity and availability may become a problem in tight markets. 3PLs and carriers are always looking for business, but when capacity is tight, they will take care of strategic customers before servicing transactional customers.
  • Cannot fully leverage technology and technology integration which leads to problems. If a shipper decides to use multiple 3PLs, rather than develop a strategic relationship with one, they may not be able to gain the full benefit of system integration. Shippers may find themselves using several different systems and processes. They may not be able to view and track all their shipments in one place. Additionally, KPIs and business intelligence must be managed internally because no one carrier or 3PL has all the data.
  • The data harnessed and then harvested from transportation management systems is extremely valuable for insights and future carrier negotiations – trading these insights for a one-time lower price is short-sighted.
  • Lack of account familiarity is a problem when a shipper uses a lot of different 3PLs and carriers. The 3PL/carrier never fully understands the shipper’s business requirements.
The Process for Building Strategic Partnerships with 3PLs and Carriers
  • Select the right partner for your transportation and logistics business. Involve all internal stakeholders in the selection process to ensure the carriers and 3PLs ultimately selected can provide a world-class solution.
  • Establish trust and mutual respect with your 3PL and carriers.
  • Don’t wear out the welcome mat. As a shipper, become a shipper of choice. Expedites and special requests are a necessary part of logistics, however, shippers who plan and communicate better make better partners.
  • Be patient and expect ramp-up issues at launch. The shipper, 3PL, and carriers should develop a launch plan that includes onboarding, training, system integration along with a regularly scheduled launch meeting. Even with careful planning, there will be issues. Encourage the 3PL/carriers to share the problems and solutions. Constructive feedback should be readily given and received.
  • Make sure the partnership is win-win. Spend the time required to build the relationship. For the shipper, learn about the problems that your carriers and 3PLs have. Ask what you can do to improve your interactions and touchpoints. Become a shipper of choice. For 3PLs and carriers, learn about your customer's industry and their biggest problems. Focus on continuous improvement and customer experience.
The Benefits of Building Strategic Partnerships with 3PLs and Carriers
  • Improved service performance and cost reductions as the shipper, 3PL, and carrier network analyze and optimize the logistics and transportation function.
  • Customized solutions that make shipping faster, easier, and less expensive. When a shipper develops a strategic relationship with a provider, it enables the provider to invest in developing a customized solution for a shipper. For shippers who don’t develop strategic relationships with 3PLs and carriers, they will not a customized solution or the results that come with it.
  • Additional capacity and availability even in tight markets. Shippers who have strategic relationships with 3PLs and carriers typically do a better job forecasting demand, which makes it easier for carriers to support your business.
  • Fully leverage technology and technology integration which streamlines the shipping process and provides invaluable insights, KPIs and business intelligence. Those insights will lead to service improvement, reduced costs and enhanced forecasting.
  • Account familiarity which builds relationships, improves communication, speeds problem resolution, and a better understanding of your business requirements.
Key Takeaways
  • For shippers, build strategic relationships with 3PLs and carriers to ensure that your company gets world-class performance from your 3PL and carriers.
  • For carriers and 3PLs, develop your people, service offering and technology so your company can become the type of service provider that top shippers want to partner with.
Learn More

Maine Pointe

Rail Optimization White Paper: The Future of Rail Series

Don Dovgin LinkedIn

The Logistics of Logistics Podcast

Mar 06 2020

29mins

Play

Why Logistics Companies are Upgrading to Mobile Payments with Robin Gregg

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[00:49] Please tell us about you and your company.

  • I’m Robin Gregg, CEO of RoadSync. We are a payments company located in Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Our goal is to make payments faster and simpler for the logistics industry.
  • I grew up in West Virginia and went to Washington and Lee University. After, I got my MBA from Harvard Business School.
  • My career started at Capital One and have worked with several fintech startups.
  • I had been advising a company in Atlanta that was focused on helping warehouses invoice and accept payments from truck drivers. I saw the product and was struck by how paper-based the process used to be. There was a huge opportunity, so I rebranded the company and we’ve been growing ever since.

[04:27] Tell us a little bit more about fintech (financial technology) in Atlanta.

  • All the big payments processing giants are in Atlanta. 80% of payments processing is here.
  • It’s a fantastic place to be in this business. The talent pool is excellent and there are lots of tax advantages.

[07:45] While we were prepping for this interview, I said that I thought everyone was using some sort of technology or automation for payments, but you explained that is not the case. So, what’s so wrong about using a paper process?

  • It’s a slower workflow because, for example, you might have to hand write things. It’s slow to process, and drivers can get stuck.
  • There are more opportunities for errors.
  • More opportunity and instances of employee theft/fraud.
  • The extra work and disorganized process can cause cash flow problems
  • Using paper can hurt your company’s perception because the industry is undergoing a technology makeover.
  • Many carriers, 3PLs, and digital freight brokers have upgraded to faster, easier payments through technology.
  • The technology products in the logistics industry have gotten a lot better over the last few years. The experience is much more user friendly, but that’s a relatively new innovation.

[12:20] Why isn’t everybody just upgrading right now?

  • There are so many challenges that companies in this industry are grappling with.
  • Automating some of their business processes can’t always be the top priority because owners are focused on their main objective.

[15:19] What is the process a warehouse or food distribution center needs to go through to get set up with RoadSync?

  • We typically get them to see a short demo. This helps them internalize how they can use it and how it fits into their business process.
  • We also configure the rate schedule based on how they charge for things, as well as setting up the desired payment methods.
  • The system can be up and running in about thirty minutes.
  • There is no crazy upfront charge; just a monthly fee and then a percentage of each payment.
  • It’s easy to see a return on investment. We have clients who were previously losing 4-10% due to negligence.

[19:59] I really like that you specialize in transportation and logistics.

  • We think it’s important to customize our service offering towards logistics.
  • This industry operates uniquely, and we think it’s important that the products which serve the industry understand that.

Learn More:

Robin Gregg LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/robingregg RoadSync: https://www.roadsync.com/about/ RoadSync on Twitter: https://twitter.com/goroadsync

Dec 09 2019

21mins

Play

4 Pillars to Future-Proofing Your Supply Chain with Yatish Desai

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[00:41] Tell us a little bit about where you’re from and what you do.

  • I’m Yatish Desai, managing director with KPMG. I’ve been with them for ten years.
  • I’m also the US leader for their transportation, logistics, and distribution service offering.
  • Our customers typically fall into one of four categories: industrial manufacturing companies, consumer and retail companies, pharmaceutical companies, and oil and gas/chemical companies.

[01:56] What are the 4 pillars to future-proofing your supply chain?

  • The 4 pillars to future-proofing your supply chain are visibility, managing the data, predictive analytics, and establishing and developing curated partner ecosystems.

[02:54] Why don’t you get into visibility?

  • It’s not about just looking from a functional perspective. We look at it end-to-end on the supply chain, not just “where are my trucks?”
  • With a wide range of internal and external parties involved in the supply chain, a lot of managers have to constantly monitor every activity to ensure consistency.
  • This calls for high levels of collaboration.
  • It’s all about integrating cross-functional visibility across the enterprise.

[05:04] What is the next pillar for future-proofing the supply chain?

  • It’s managing the data. We live in a world where data is cash.
  • Our clients struggle because they are collecting data but often not able to bring it all together to provide business opportunities.
  • Collecting the data is one thing, but using it is another.
  • It’s important to determine a few notable KPIs instead of getting caught up in analyzing as much data as possible.

[09:58] The third pillar to future-proofing your supply chain is predictive analytics, so tell us more about that.

  • This is becoming more and more important to a lot of clients.
  • Traditionally, supply chains have been managed by people. In the future, a growing number of decisions will be automated.
  • This will increase operational speed and free up supply chain professionals to focus on more complex decision making.
  • This translates to a future where supply chains will be able to reduce waste, line shutdowns, etc.
  • Control towers today are built around helping clients mine data, look at it, and recognize gaps. It’s a reactive system.
  • Machine learning will provide you with real-time business insights to make better decisions proactively.

[17:29] Let’s get into the fourth pillar.

  • Successful businesses are moving away from traditional, asset-based supply chains to a managed services model.
  • Capital-intensive capabilities, such as warehousing, are outsourced to partners. In the future, it won’t only be physical processes that are outsourced.
  • As supply chain management depends more on cutting edge analytics, there will be a skill gap that is unable to be filled quickly enough.
  • A curated partner ecosystem means you’ll have to tailor it to what fits your purpose; using just any partner will not work.
  • You’ll build up a network of specialized partners who are within your supply chain and providing service to you.
  • The specialized partners will be relied on to bring more innovation into the fold.

[26:28] Tell us a little bit more about what you guys are doing at KPMG.

  • We are helping clients in three different facets: clients that are hurting from their business being stagnant, clients that are growing and need help future-proofing, and clients who need transformational change to become a leader in their space.
  • Our clients expect us to be thought-provoking for their business. They can’t afford to be stuck in the status quo.

Learn More:

Yatish Desai LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/yatishdesai/ KPMG Advisory: https://www.kpmg.us/

Dec 07 2019

30mins

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A New Approach to Frozen eCommerce Fulfillment with Dan Gilland

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[00:49] Introduce you and your company.

  • I’m Dan Gilland, and I lead business development for Schwan’s Home Service. We are based in Minnesota.
  • I was practically born and raised on Schwan’s, so it’s fitting that I’m working here.
  • Schwan’s has sold high quality, delicious frozen food direct-to-consumer since 1952.
  • We deliver just about everywhere in the lower forty-eight states using our depots and trucks. The actual home deliveries are managed by our partner, UPS.

[05:21] Tell us about Schwan’s model.

  • Our typical model is delivering our frozen food direct to customers with our own private fleet of delivery trucks.
  • We call our 3PL side Cygnus Frozen 3PL by Schwan’s Home Service. We wanted to establish that it is part of Schwan’s but differentiate it from our direct-to-consumer business.

[07:37] What is frozen eCommerce fulfillment?

  • Shipping online orders of frozen food direct to consumers’ homes.
  • Most frozen food brands either don’t have the infrastructure or desire to fulfill their own orders.
  • A lot of frozen foods being sold online today include meats, ice cream, smoothies, and frozen meals.
  • eCommerce gives you the space to market your brand and tell your story accordingly.

[12:01] What are the problems that companies who are trying to deliver frozen foods to consumers’ homes run into?

  • Of all the product categories sold online, the degree of difficulty is probably the highest for shipping frozen food.
  • Your mistakes are really clear and really frustrating to the customer.
  • Food showing up in poor condition can damage the brand even though it may be the 3PL’s fault.

[16:21] What’s the second big problem you see out there?

  • Dealing with a 3PL that doesn’t specialize in frozen food and/or doesn’t specialize in direct-to-consumer or ecommerce.
  • Frozen food needs to stay frozen throughout the whole process, so the 3PL must have experience in doing this.

[19:22] What’s another problem you see in the marketplace?

  • Slow shipping. Consumers expect one- to two-day shipping but getting that speed everywhere in the US can be a challenge.

[20:51] Tell me a little bit about how Cygnus goes about frozen ecommerce fulfillment.

  • The first thing that you must solve is getting within two-day shipping of all your customers.
  • Another thing to do to reduce melting is to have a really clear packing process.

[22:58] Explain the whole process from the time a company makes a frozen food item to when it gets to the consumer.

  • You ship your inventory on pallets to our national distribution center in Minnesota.
  • From there, Schwan’s would distribute your inventory to our ten fulfillment centers.
  • Each of our ten centers get a replenishment every two weeks.
  • We’ll integrate with your online order management platform so that we can see orders as your customers place them.
  • UPS then comes by every afternoon and picks up all the orders shipping out that day.

[26:51] This is a good opportunity for someone who is getting into the frozen ecommerce business to have a fulfillment partner who’s been doing it for seventy years.

  • That’s why we thought that this segment makes too much sense for us not to engage in.
  • We have the fulfillment network and that intersects with the growth of online grocery.

[27:55] If someone wants to continue the conversation, how do they get ahold of you?

  • You can go to our website to see more about how our process works through case studies.
  • There’s a form that you can fill out to set up a free consultation.

Learn More:

Dan Gilland LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dan-gilland-3835aa58/

Cygnus Frozen 3PL: https://cygnus3pl.com/

Nov 28 2019

30mins

Play

The Number One Killer of Sales with Ann Holm

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[01:10] So many people say coach, consultant, and trainer interchangeably. Talk about the differences between them and a little bit about your background in brain science.

  • The value of working with a coach is not for that individual to be an advisor, but to help you get at the root of why you want to do something and how you will accomplish it.
  • There’s lots of different roles people can play in your success. You can have consultants advise you about what to do. There are trainers that can train a particular set of behaviors.
  • The difference is when you’re coaching, you’re trying to tap into your inner wisdom and create self-awareness. It’s in that self-awareness that you’re able to move forward.
  • I worked for twenty-five years in brain science. It was a therapy role, but coaching was also required.

[03:10] Can you talk briefly about Myers–Briggs?

  • I use the Myers–Briggs personality test when I work with someone, along with the TypeCoach assessment.
  • Our personalities are complex, but these tests are a good place to start understanding one’s personality.

[04:50] What is the number one killer of sales?

  • It’s procrastination.
  • Procrastination shows up in a lot of different ways. Essentially, it all boils down to doing things that are either counterproductive or that distract you from the goals and tasks that you need to accomplish.

[06:04] Is there usually an emotional component to that?

  • There can be a fear of failure. “What if I put this all together and nobody is interested in purchasing it? What if it’s subject to a great deal of criticism from my coworkers or customers?”
  • It can also be a fear of success. Sometimes you will be concerned about if you can complete the deal that you landed.
  • There are also people who get a thrill from doing things at the last minute.

[09:08] Let’s talk about what procrastination looks like in sales.

  • Procrastination can be obstructive in many ways when trying to do lead gen.
  • It’s a task that can be unpleasant to do because you have to put yourself out there, so you might feel a fear of rejection.
  • You might experiment with too many ways of getting leads, and before you know it, you’ve tried all the ways but haven’t made a decision about what you will do.

[13:17] What if we have important things that need to get done besides our top priority?

  • Distraction is related to procrastination, which is finding things that will take our attention away from what we need to do.
  • Another aspect is rationalization, which can be the strongest of all. When you’re looking at your tasks, it’s important to watch out for the rationalization component.

[15:34] Let’s talk about strategies for getting around these horrible monsters.

  • The first one is called “worst first.” This is the commitment that the very first thing you’re going to address is your priority.
  • In the morning, your brain energy is at a very high level, so you can address something that is the worst. If you put it off until the end of the day, you may not have the energy to do it.
  • Start to develop an awareness of if you are procrastinating and not addressing your top priority.

[20:15] What’s another strategy we can use to kill these triplets?

  • The next one is “mini milestones.”
  • Some projects are huge, so setting a mini milestone can really be helpful. They help you focus on a small part of the big picture.

[21:59] What’s another strategy for beating procrastination, distraction, and rationalization?

  • I call it “the cone of silence.”
  • This is the idea of creating a space where you have no other place to go. It’s about finding a way to eliminate as many distractions as possible.

[24:27] What’s the next strategy?

  • The next one is called “time boxing.”
  • Time boxing is a pure output commitment. “I’m going to work for thirty minutes, and I’m going to do X, Y, and Z.”

[26:30] Do you have any more strategies?

  • One of them is just a reminder that it’s okay to do some daydreaming and things like that. Procrastination is not inherently bad all the time.
  • People become more creative when they get up and take a walk, for instance.
  • This is, again, where the self-awareness piece comes in.

[28:50] What’s the last strategy?

  • It’s the idea of partnering with somebody; having an accountability partner.
  • Often that’s a role of the coach, but it could be someone you work with, a friend, or anyone that’s going to help you stay on task.
  • If you want to have a little fun with it, you can throw in a vile disincentive to loosen the energy up.

[33:15] Will you summarize this for us?

  • The most important takeaway is to really pay attention. Develop self-awareness of what you’re doing and pay attention to those three brothers waiting to derail you.

Learn More:

Ann Holm's website: https://www.annholm.net/

Nov 11 2019

35mins

Play

Why Marketing is Your Best Salesperson with Jim Bierfeldt

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[01:01] Tell us a little bit about you and your company.

  • My company is Logistics Marketing Advisors. I started it in 2004 and we’re located in Connecticut.
  • We help logistics businesses improve their marketing to drive revenue and profits.
  • I’m born and raised in New York and got my master’s degree at Fordham University.
  • In the late 80s and early 90s, I worked for a large advertising and public relations agency. One of our clients was a logistics company, and they hired me away to run their marketing.

[03:59] Let’s talk a little bit about the problems we see in this space when it comes to sales. What’s the first problem you want to talk about?

  • I think the way companies buy today is very different from how they bought twenty years ago, and I really don’t think the logistics industry has evolved with that.
  • There’s so much information out there that wasn’t available before about how to solve certain problems and what providers can help.
  • Buyers are probably 70% or more through the sales process before they talk to a salesperson.
  • The solution is getting found by prospects you don’t know.
  • If somebody does a Google search, perhaps you want them to be directed to a relevant article on your website.
  • Marketing is a game of hide-and-seek in reverse, but some executives think about it the wrong way.

[08:27] Tell us another problem that’s out there.

  • Companies are asking salespeople to fill their own pipeline, as well as to work and close deals.
  • If lead generation today is more about getting found, it requires more of a marketing skill set.
  • A lot of logistics companies confuse what you have to do to get people to find you versus what you have to do to get people to buy from you.
  • Once you get found, it’s up to the salesperson.
  • When you ask a salesperson to generate their own leads in this day and age, that means being marketing savvy. To them, that’s foreign. They just know to pick up the phone and make calls.

[14:40] Tell us about another problem you see out there.

  • Logistics companies that I talk to want to move to lead generation before they nail the strategy. It’s really all about the strategy.
  • A lot of logistics companies look and sound the same. That’s the kiss of death in an environment where decision makers are bombarded every day.
  • A non-differentiated message just contributes to the noise level.
  • Nailing your position, understanding what your niche is, and trying to speak directly to the people who align best with that niche is what you must do.
  • Even the biggest brands in the world recognize that it’s better to have a big chunk of part of the market than to try to get the whole market.

[20:42] Talk about another problem that you see out there.

  • Getting budget support for marketing is always really hard. It’s viewed as an expense, not an investment.
  • Companies that have marketing are their own worst enemy because they’re not measuring the ROI.
  • For a boss wondering if he should spend more money on marketing or hire a salesperson, it’s easier for him to see the ROI on the salesperson.
  • If you have the right CRM, you can do a pretty good analysis of what percentage of business is emanating from marketing.
  • There’s always a sense that marketing investments will pay off immediately.

[25:17] What’s another problem you see out there?

  • I do research every couple of years where I go out and ask a whole bunch of buyers of logistics how they buy, where they go to get their information, and what frustrates them the most about the process.
  • The number-one complaint is that people reach out to them and offer a solution with no understanding of their industry or company.
  • “I don’t want to feel like I’m the twenty-third person on the call list” perfectly summarizes the attitude.
  • You can make twenty phone calls in half an hour, but if you do the right research, you can probably make two or three that are quite valuable.

[31:27] Give us a summary of this topic.

  • Marketing is your best salesperson. That really says it all.
  • It’s more about getting found; not the provider finding the shipper. They’ll find you, but you have to make it easy.

[32:20] What are you doing at Logistics Marketing Advisors?

  • Mid-market companies are our sweet spot. We come in and become their marketing department.
  • We’re helping them with strategy and every aspect down to execution.
  • We provide data that they can use to hold us accountable and see what kind of return they are getting over time.

Learn More:

Jim’s email address: jim@logisticsmarketing.com Jim Bierfeldt LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jimbierfeldt/ Logistics Marketing Advisors: https://www.logisticsmarketing.com/

Nov 04 2019

35mins

Play

Automating Cross-Border Transportation with Matt Silver

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[00:50] Introduce yourself and your company.

  • I’m Matt Silver, Founder and CEO of Forager. We’re based in Chicago, and our primary focus is on building technology to automate cross-border transportation.
  • I grew up in a logistics family and have been around it my entire life.
  • I learned more about the industry by working at Coyote when I was 19, a company which was founded by my parents.
  • We moved our first load at Forager in December 2018.

[03:13] Let’s talk a little bit about the biggest problems you saw in cross-border before we get into the solutions.

  • It all comes down to service and pricing at the end of the day.
  • Service is anything from “where’s my load? What’s going on with it?” to “I don’t understand what’s going on with these emails because they’re in Spanish” to “I don’t understand the customs process.”
  • I hear a lot of complaints about the spend. Bringing transparency to pricing is important to people in this industry.

[05:24] You say that even though some companies don’t spend the majority of their time on cross-border, they spend a big chunk of their time working on it.

  • If they’re grabbing the freight in Laredo after a pickup in Mexico, then sure, that was really easy for them.
  • Still, if they’re only controlling the US portion, they still have the problems of not knowing when it will cross into the country.
  • They run into capacity problems. There’s seven times more freight going from south to north than north to south.
  • Drivers don’t like waiting, and if they get stuck somewhere instead of going home, you’re putting them in a really bad spot.

[11:06] Are we going to talk about Canada also?

  • When you talk about cross-border, Mexico and Canada kind of get lumped together.
  • The reality of it is that Canada is almost like an extension of the US. There are a few differences, but it’s easy to pick up a load in Toronto and deliver it the next day in Chicago.
  • Mexico is definitely more challenging.

[13:00] Tell us about your hypothesis when starting your business.

  • The whole reason we started was to service cross-border freight. That’s what excites me.
  • There are so many freight brokers who specialize in domestic shipments. We wanted to specialize in cross-border and be different.

[18:36] Tell us how you guys go about automating cross-border transportation.

  • We’ve built a command center that allows someone to understand where their freight is at all times on either side of the border.
  • People are very important in our business. To me, automation means not having to spend an hour figuring out how to price a load.
  • About 70% of our freight can move through our system without human interaction.
  • Sometimes, people really want to talk to a human and we provide that.
  • The average transportation management system wasn’t built to manage cross-border freight.

[23:14] Transportation management systems keep getting better, but a whole bunch of stuff ends up in notes. Things in notes can never be part of the AI learning.

  • We have a notes field for now, but our plan is to eliminate it within the next year.
  • The most important thing in this entire industry is data. The more data you can generate, the more you can make your customers’ lives easier.
  • There are some companies trying to integrate emails into the data as well, which is very interesting.

[28:01] I like that you’re a freight guy first and a technology guy second. So often, I run into people who are just one or the other. You’ve grown up with both.

  • That definitely weighed into why we were able to raise capital.
  • What’s most important is bringing in the right talent. Our team brings unique perspectives.
  • Just building a TMS is not interesting to me. Developing game-changing technology is what I want to do.

[32:01] Tell us about what you guys are up to at Forager.

  • We’re trying to make it as easy as possible for people to move freight in and out of Mexico and Canada.
  • In the next few weeks, we’re launching a portal for customers to log in, plug in an origin and destination, and get a rate back instantly.
  • If customers want to talk to us, we’re happy to do that, but as more people from my generation are getting into this industry, they don’t want to have to talk to someone else all the time. They would rather log in and get a rate instantly.
  • We are the experts in the technology, but we’re making it useful for everybody.

[34:44] Any final thoughts?

  • It’s been awesome talking to you. It’s really refreshing when I don’t have to explain logistics to who I’m talking with.

Learn More:

Matt Silver's LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mattpsilver/ Forager Website: https://foragerscs.com/

Oct 23 2019

37mins

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The Hidden Solution to Most Supply Chain Problems with Ron Crabtree

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[00:37] Please tell us a little about you and your company.

  • I’m Ron Crabtree, CEO and Founder of MetaOps, Inc. We are located in Metro Detroit.
  • We specialize in providing interim and contract to hire talent at the highest level.
  • I grew up near Kalamazoo and ended up going to night school for over seventeen years. Eventually, I emerged with an undergrad in organizational development.
  • Before starting MetaOps, I had a career of about twenty years in supply chain.

[05:18] Talk about the most common supply chain problems you encounter with MetaOps.

  • Everybody’s got common challenges at the enterprise level. There’s pressure to bring new products and services to market a lot faster. Also, there’s unrelenting pressure on price because of globalization. More and more people are grappling about what to do about the carbon footprint, too.
  • There are two major problems that I see at a tactical level day-to-day. The first isn’t about making or moving stock, it’s about information that has to be handled.
  • The second problem is that you can’t solve today’s problems using the methods as yesterday. Supply chain is getting more complex every single day, and many companies don’t even know where to start. The fourth industrial revolution, Industry 4.0, is happening.

[14:23] What is the solution to most of these supply chain problems?

  • Before I get to that, let me provide a few more case study examples.
  • One challenge I’m working on now is with fresh produce. There’s an amazing supply chain behind all of that.
  • Forecasting exactly when the produce needs to be packed in the field is a massive problem. Not having packaging at the right place and the right time isn’t an option, and having mountains of packaging lying around on the field isn’t an option either.
  • 90% of the root cause of failure is not the physical movement, it’s having everything in the right place at the right time.
  • There are challenges in military hardware, medical care, etc. as well.

[19:33] The three solutions.

  • If it’s a severe enterprise challenge, you might need an internally generated top-to-bottom assessment. This would involve leveraging industry best practices.
  • The second big thing companies are doing is re-engineering their business process. If you’ve got the money for it and don’t have the skills internally, there’s nothing wrong with this.
  • The third one is infusing the knowledge and expertise at the exact point that things are broken. This is a solution that MetaOps can provide.

[24:42] MetaOps’ model is to bring in the guy who has experience and has actually done this. You guys aren’t coming from an HR or recruiting background, you’re coming from an operator background.

  • Only about 5% of the people we look at make it through our vetting process. These are people who can absolutely go do the job, not just talk about it.

[26:23] Tell us about what’s going on at MetaOps.

  • In 2011, after many years of requests, we crafted the MetaExperts brand to get away from offering traditional consulting and training. That’s been continuing to grow and is the vast majority of what we do.
  • A shift we’ve seen in the last year is that we’re getting to work with large and small consulting firms. We get to be a resource in the background that they can tap into for very specific problems.

Learn More:

MetaOps: http://metaops.com/

Ron Crabtree LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/roncrabtree/

Oct 14 2019

29mins

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The Future of Inbound Lead Generation with Blythe Brumleve

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[00:43] Please introduce yourself and your company.

  • I am based in Jacksonville, Florida and the owner of Digital Dispatch.
  • We help companies with their web and marketing problems.
  • About ten years ago, I started working with a 3PL in Jacksonville. When my boss found out I was blogging on the side, he asked me to start doing it for the company too.
  • I eventually got my own radio show. A lot of people make that natural evolution from content writing into radio.

[07:18] Tell us a little bit about inbound lead generation.

  • They key differentiator of inbound is that you’re creating content with your audience in mind first.
  • A lot of what you see on the internet and in this industry is very self-promotional. People aren’t searching for that. They’re searching for solutions to their problem.
  • Inbound is trying to introduce yourself and establish trust with the customer so that you can be the solution when they’re ready to buy.

[10:51] Contrast inbound with outbound.

  • Outbound is like interrupting someone’s personal space.
  • We have all gotten emails that we know have been sent out to thousands of people. It’s not personalized at all.
  • There are ways to make a cold outreach feel more personal, but it takes more time and that’s where a lot of companies struggle.

[15:34] Tell us about some new ways that we can use to get inbound leads.

  • Video and podcasting, but they are also the most intimidating.
  • Often, people hate seeing themselves on video or hearing their own voice. They let their fear paralyze them when it comes to sharing their expertise.
  • As long as you’re sharing valuable content, you’re heading in the right direction.

[18:43] You have to get past fears if you want to be found as an expert online.

  • Especially people who are first starting out. You’re not going to be an expert right away. Your first show will probably suck.
  • You’re never going to get better if you don’t do it again and again and again.
  • Keep thinking about it as having a conversation, and the intimidation factor will lessen a little bit.

[23:07] Tell us about what a podcast should focus on.

  • I think having a good balance of different categories you’re going to cover is key to any content plan.
  • There are different ways to approach your planning, and it doesn’t have to revolve around one specific type of content. However, I do think it needs to start with SEO.
  • A lot of people get stuck on just one particular type and roll with it. It gets boring after a while, and it shows in your work if you lose that passion.

[28:38] Even for business podcasts, the personality needs to come out. There needs to be some context and humanity.

  • Competitors may read a press release, but no one else will go to a website just to read a press release.
  • Video is great, but podcasting is the least intrusive. It doesn’t interrupt the audience, because they can go about their day with a podcast on in the background.

[30:49] Please summarize this topic for us.

  • At Digital Dispatch, we focus on everything from cost effective solutions to completely custom web and marketing services.
  • I love focusing on logistics because there are variety of different companies at a variety of different levels.
  • It starts with a conversation. If the content is there for your audience, people will consume it.

Learn More:

Blythe Brumleve LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/blythebrum/ Digital Dispatch: https://digitaldispatch.io/

Sep 24 2019

35mins

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The Number One Reason Why People Buy with Steve Elwell

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[01:17] What is the number one reason people buy?

  • A study on a huge sample size discovered that 38% of the sale is attributable to the salesperson; their behavior, expertise, and ability to provide a solution.

[02:09] Talk a little about buying behavior before going further.

  • The customer controls the sale. They’re going to buy or not buy based on a few things. These include the perception of risk to themselves and their organization, and the perception of potential gain to themselves and their organization.

[03:29] What is it about a salesperson that makes a buyer want to work with them?

  • The first thing is that they want the salesperson to be personally accountable for the customer’s results. If the purchase order is signed and the salesperson is long gone, that doesn’t go over well.
  • They want you to understand their business. The salesperson should understand the industry, such as logistics, but also the dynamics that are unique to each individual company.
  • Thirdly, the customer wants the salesperson to be on their side. If there are other needs, the salesperson should be willing to go back to their management and make headway.
  • The fourth thing that customers want in a salesperson is for them to bring new things to the organization. It’s about having the mindset of thinking what a good fit for the company could be even if you’re not the one selling it.
  • They want a salesperson who is easily accessible. There should not be any hassle when the customer reaches out to who sold them a product or service.

[12:57] What are some more traits that buyers want in a salesperson?

  • They want you to solve their problems. There’s a certain amount of expertise that goes a long with this, such as knowing how all the pieces fit together internally and externally.
  • Number seven is that they want you to be innovative. It’s about being knowledgeable and experienced enough to reach the outcome in a variety of different ways.

[17:13] You just gave us seven reasons why buyers want to work with a salesperson. Let’s go through the seven roles, and you can give us a bullet point about each one.

  • The agent: makes sure that the customer gets the result they expect when they buy the product.
  • The CEO: understands the customer in particular and in totality.
  • The advocate/expediter: takes action within the selling organization and the broader world to make sure all the things that need to happen do happen.
  • The consultant: looks at the customer’s business and says, “if I brought something new to that, how would they benefit?”
  • The traveler: makes sure that they are readily available to the customer.
  • The troubleshooter: a resource that helps customers solve problems.
  • The innovator: understands the customer at a deeper level and looks for new ways to help them reach their goals.

[19:33] Please put a bow on this topic for us.

I’ve always said that sales is leadership. What you’re trying to do is take a customer to a new and better place. Paying attention to these seven traits fit into the four Cs: demonstrating your character, showing that you’re competent, demonstrating that you care, and communicating in a frequent and relevant way.

Sep 17 2019

23mins

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