Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Success Story

Found this encouraging article on a broker who is expanding despite the "economic crisis". No matter the state of the economy there will always be a need for goods to be transported by reliable shippers. Be reliable, be diligent and resourceful, you too will succeed.

Freight shipping broker keeps growing despite recession
By VALERIE WHITNEY
Business Writer

DAYTONA BEACH -- Some businesses thrive even in a recession.

One of them is MacroTransport, an international transportation brokerage at 101 Executive Circle.

The 10-year-old firm posted a 13-percent increase in business in 2008 and is looking to open offices in China, Germany and India in 2009.

Casey
"When product and service meet a customer's needs and expectations, business can flourish, even in tough economic times," said Chuck Casey, company president.

MacroTransport doesn't actually own any freight haulers. Instead, it serves as a middleman between firms that have goods and those that can transport them. Some customers are firms that did have their own haulers, but deemed them too expensive to maintain. The weight of the load and the distance it must travel are two of the main factors in freight prices. The method of transportation also is important.

"We use the cheapest carriers we can find on behalf of our customers," said Casey, 47, who studied transportation logistics at Northeastern University in Boston.

He said many companies don't realize the savings they can get by using rail services as opposed to trucks. "You can save between 30 percent and 40 percent easy," he said, adding often the person responsible for handling shipping within a company is busy and doesn't take the time to research all options. That is where the services of a broker can make the difference.

"There are not too many zip codes that we have not picked up or delivered," Casey said, adding his company has orchestrated everything from the delivery of a small FedEx package to a $7 million power generator for a utility company.

The firm makes use of computer software that lets them track shipments from pickup to delivery.

SECO & Golden 100 Inc., a juice-concentrate maker in DeLand, uses the firm on a weekly basis. "When you ship products that are perishable, you need service," company spokeswoman Fabiola Prahl said in a telephone interview.

Prahl said she appreciates that the company has its offices close by. If there is a problem, it is easy to get in touch with MacroTransport, she said.

Casey moved his company and its 39 employees about six months ago from Ormond Beach to the office building on Executive Circle in Indigo Business Park. The new office has 12,500 square feet of space or roughly three times as much as its former office.

"We have space for 86 people," said Casey, who has two business partners. Bill Davies, who runs Ormond Beach-based IPS Worldwide, one of several transportation-related subsidiaries owned by the trio, and Michigan-based Doug Cook, who is responsible for negotiating contracts with clients interested in IPS.

In 1975, there were only 70 transportation brokers licensed by the Interstate Commerce Commission. By 1988, that number had exploded to about 6,100 nationwide and by the end of 1993, there were more than 8,000, prompted by the deregulation of the transportation brokerage industry.

Today the number of brokers hovers between 10,000 and 15,000, according to Gatlin Education Services, a Web-based education provider that offers classes in becoming a broker. There are thousands of truck companies.

Casey got into the business following deregulation, first as an employee for a New England firm. He moved to Florida in 1993 to take a position at C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc., an industry powerhouse with offices in Florida. After six years with that firm, Casey and his partners decided to venture out on their own.

"You just have to find the right niche," he said.

valerie.whitney@news-jrnl.com

Moving forward,

Jeff Roach
www.brooketraining.com
www.transportationtraining.com
www.justintimefreight.com

Friday, February 20, 2009

Phone Call Content

If you are a carrier or a broker/agent you are always looking for shippers. To get shippers you make calls. Lots of calls. 50 a day is what I recommend to my rookies.

You need a sales script, right??? Anyone who knows me, knows I go crazy when a student asks for a script when calling shippers for the first time.

Imagine yourself at the end of a hard day…the phone rings …you’re hoping it is your fishing buddy. The black bass are hitting all over lake Travis, I'm thinking with a smile and then to my surprise it's a telemarketer.

We all hate to be bothered by these people who invade our space. How dare they? You see when you read a script you come across as a telemarketer. Then you start believing and acting like a telemarketer. Telemarketers are pests who are trying to sell us something we probably don’t want or need.

As a Freight Broker you are NOT a pest. You are offering a service the shipper vitally needs.

Be confidant knowing people buy from you because you have invested in education, you are a professional, you’re a giver, and you have a great attitude. Being NEW at the job can be a bonus. Tell the shipper you’re new and you want to help them solve their problems.

Get to the right person at the shipper firm and ask if it is an okay time to visit. If they say yes, ask them when's the last time you needed a truck and couldn't find one? Wait as long as possible. Silence is golden.

Listen to what the customer is telling you. Take notes and ask to go over the notes. Ask: What are the goals are of the shipper? Then purpose to help them reach those goals. Become part of the team.

It takes 7-9 touches before a customer makes a buying decision Do not quit after four. They say about 80% of sales people stop calling on a prospect after 4 times. Every sales book in America will tell you it takes 7-9 touches before a prospect will buy from you. What is a touch? A note in the mail, an email, a phone call, etc... Always include your contact information.

After you make a sale, bend over backwards giving more than you promised. Once the traffic manager trusts you because you did what you said when you said you were going to do it, you will get business.

You will get customer for life.

The customer chooses everything including when to buy, how much, and how often. The vendor they trust the most will be the one who gets the lion share of business. Rates are often talked about but in reality most shippers will pay more for out of this world service. Read Customers for Life by Carl Sewell.

The investment in time will pay off. Your goal is to make a customer, not a sale. I don't claim to be an expert on sales but I know for sure that if you treat the shipper the way you want to be treated - you will be a superstar sales pro.

I used to work for a great guy who owned a large trucking company. He’d say,” You will get a Gold Star on your forehead when you close a big account.” Funny thing I closed some whoppers and he never gave me those stars...He did give me an education and for that I will be always be grateful. You can’t replace education.
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The more you earn, the more you learn.


Moving forward,


Jeff Roach - President

jroach@transportationtraining.com
www.transportationtraining.com
www.brooketraining.com
www.justintimefreight.com

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Interruptions

Do you like or dislike interruptions? In general I’d say most of us would say we don’t like interruptions. But think about it… have you ever been stuck with a long-winded blow hard at a party or on the phone…you welcome an interruption, an excuse to excuse yourself from the conversation that you just are not enjoying.

When you make a sales call you are an interruption. But be a good interruption. A welcome interruption. A bright spot in a hectic day. That may not always be possible but being positive not pushy goes along way in developing a relationship. Think of all the people in business and in your social network that have sold you something. Which ones do you welcome back to talk with? Which ones do you avoid? I enjoy conversation with most of my clients because I have a genuine interest in their business. I know if I do a good job for them and take a burden off their shoulders, we both win. And they are much more likely to call me again when they need a broker.

Statistically, in conversation we are not very good listeners. We are just waiting for a time to interrupt so we can talk. Or we tune out and think of something else. Some people are intriguing to listen to, others exasperating. What makes the difference between interesting conversation and uninteresting conversation? Work on being an interesting conversationalist by being relevant and personal. Work on being a good listener by truly hearing what the other is saying. Repeat back what you think you heard they said in your own words. Repeating shows them you truly are trying to understand what they need and were listening intently.

I’m ADD so staying in tune can be a challenge for me. I purpose today to listen more intently to my students, to my clients and to my wife and girls.

Moving forward,

Jeff Roach
www.brooketraining.com
www.justintimefreight.com
www.transportationtraining.com

Monday, February 16, 2009

Presidential Salute

We live in a great country. Even in the midst of an economic downturn we are incredibly blessed. Our great democracy is the home of freedom, creativity and diversity. In honor of President’s Day here is a list of the valiant men who served our country in the capacity of president. It is an honor and a huge burden. I don’t think the office of the president is as respected as it should be. Take time to look through and be thankful for these men who were often blamed for things out of their control and praised for other things they had little part in. They chose to hold this top office in our land and work at improving America. I think they achieved helping America’s greatness through their brave efforts:

OUR PRESIDENTS

1. George Washington

2. John Adams

3. Thomas Jefferson

4. James Madison

5. James Monroe

6. John Quincy Adams

7. Andrew Jackson

8. Martin Van Buren

9. William Henry Harrison

10. John Tyler

11. James K. Polk

12. Zachary Taylor

13. Millard Fillmore

14. Franklin Pierce

15. James Buchanan

16. Abraham Lincoln

17. Andrew Johnson

18. Ulysses S. Grant

19. Rutherford B. Hayes

20. James Garfield

21. Chester A. Arthur

22. Grover Cleveland

23. Benjamin Harrison

24. Grover Cleveland

25. William McKinley

26. Theodore Roosevelt

27. William Howard Taft

28. Woodrow Wilson

29. Warren G. Harding

30. Calvin Coolidge

31. Herbert Hoover

32. Franklin D. Roosevelt

33. Harry S. Truman

34. Dwight D. Eisenhower

35. John F. Kennedy

36. Lyndon B. Johnson

37. Richard M. Nixon

38. Gerald R. Ford

39. James Carter

40. Ronald Reagan

41. George H. W. Bush

42. William J. Clinton

43. George W. Bush

44. Barack Obama

Moving forward,

Jeff Roach
www.brooketraining.com

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Is Freight Brokering easy Money?

Whenever I talk with a freight broker wanna be, thinking about being or freight broker student I am very upfront about what it takes to be a freight broker. It is a career with huge potential earnings. But only for those who are willing to train, be diligent and responsible. I tell potential students to get 6 months worth of living expenses saved up before starting this career. You might get lucky and land an account during training (some have) but realistically it takes some time to find a shipper needing you to get their load moved. We teach you how to find leads, talk to those leads and work the shipment once you are given the chance.

I found this article in hubpages I found quite to the point. Here’s part of it. Click over to the link to read the whole article and comment if you desire.



What if I could guarantee you a new career as a truck broker or a freight broker agent in two weeks making good money, would you believe it?

An Exploration of Freight Broker and Truck Broker Agent Careers

For those considering a lucrative career as a Truck Broker or a Freight Broker Agent there are a whole slew of Learn How's, Become A, or Work from home courses and training materials that promise a rewarding career, quickly and easily.

Don't, good things take time, focused effort and a measure of initiative? Take these promises with a grain of salt before shelling out the money for these sorts of training courses and know these key elements before you quit your day job.

* Know that unless you are in the industry, have contacts, money backing and a whole host of other elements you might find it difficult to hit the ground running making the kind of money you expect.
* If you are new to the career you will need to budget time and resources, (money), to not only run your business if you choose to be a broker vs. an agent as well as to cover your living expenses.

* That the job market for new broker agents with no experience (no client book or related experience/ clients) is difficult as many established good reputation 3PL's are looking for experienced freight broker agents with client following as these positions are commission based and have the greatest earning potential.

* New brokers with no experience in industry, starting a new brokerage need to be aware of costs, licensing requirements and the time involved. To start it would be wise to start with shipper clients in place, financial backing for what is required of a full blown brokerage and enough liquid funds on hand to sustain you for a reasonable time until your business generates billings & cash flow that can meet your business and personal expenses.

So again nothing good comes easy, it takes work, knowledge and understanding to succeed, but there is money in them there hills you just have to walk before you can run.

Topic Focus: We are going to address working as a freight broker agent but we will touch on some of the aspects of being a broker. We will give you some reasonable explanations of what the responsibilities are for a broker or broker agent and what to watch out for when choosing to work either directly, open your own freight logistics brokerage or being an independent broker agent under the umbrella of a 3PL (Third Party Logistics) in the following sections of this article


You might already be on your way to being a broker or broker agent!

If you are currently in the field as a truck driver, shipping agent or dispatch agent or are a "truck broker" working as a base salary plus commission employee and want to earn more while not having the responsibilities of being a broker, you already have the basic tools to work with a established, good credit 3PL as a Freight Broker Agent to achieve in many cases greater growth and income potential. For those who are broker agents with good resources, client list and can handle all the administrative, legal and other elements required you are also in a good position as well to take the next step and have your own 3PL or freight/truck broker business.

Is the freight broker agent job or transportation logistics industry saturated?

In the United States alone we experience a net gain of one person every 13 seconds. Wow, this is incredible when you consider today at the time of this writing the U.S. Population Clock projects 303,431,751 people inside the U.S. With this kind of growth the according to PEW Research Center we are projected to have over 438 million people within our borders by the year 2050. With the additional population and their demand for goods we add a greater burden to our logistics requirements to get those goods to market in a cost effective and efficient manner.


If you read this and are interested in the field. Click on over to our website, give me a call or email. I love to chat, I shoot straight and I usually have a funny story or two to tell.

Moving forward,

Jeff Roach
www.brooketraining.com
www.justintimefreight.com

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Google Answers

It is interesting to me how the internet truly is the super information highway. Whatever the topic it seems people google for the answer. Now that many have web access on their phones I think people dream up things they can google while waiting in line, driving their cars or walking through the mall. My brother in law loves to whip out his blackberry to find the name of an actor in a movie he can’t think of, or look up a football statistic or a biology question. I enjoy browsing all the transportation forums. I recently responded to this question I found online:

What are the best freight agent broker qualifications and training to get ahead?

I think it's great that you ask this. It is important to reflect on who you are, what you like to do and what training is involved before you embark on any career. If you enjoy what you do you will be a success.

A great freight broker is someone interested in helping others with a great business need. The need to get their goods from manufacturer to consumer distribution. It does involve sales but mostly matching of trucks with merchandise. Freight brokers need to be dependable and hard working with good follow through.

A freight broker is a consultant. You have to take the time to know the critical issues of shippers and carriers like fuel. You help them solve problems. You must be trustworthy.

I recommend taking an online or live freight broker training school. After you’ve been at it awhile take an advanced course to polish the skills that become most important in the part of the industry on which you choose to focus.

I have a school that trains freight broker agents. I get paid to help train people and get them placed in a freight brokerage that matches who they are. It's like Zig Ziglar says, " you can have everything in life you want if you just help enough other people get what they want"...

www.transportationtraining.com

Good luck to all the new brokers.

You will do great,

Moving Forward,

Jeff Roach

www. brooketraining.com

Friday, February 6, 2009

It’s a Mental Game

Before you begin a thing remind yourself that difficulties and delays quite impossible to foresee are ahead. You can only see one thing clearly, and that is your goal. Form a mental vision of that and cling to it through thick and thin.
Kathleen Norris

I do my best to stay optimistic even with naysayers surround me. It is my choice. I cannot always change my circumstance but I can think of it in a positive light. In the Hiding Place, a book by Corrie Ten Boome about the Nazi era comes to mind when I’m in a tough spot that seems impossible.

Corrie’s family hid Jews in a secret room in their house from the Nazi soldiers who planned on exterminating all Jews. They eventually got caught. Corrie and her sister were in a concentration camp not knowing when they would be taken to the gas chamber. They slept in hideous quarters teaming with all sorts of pesky, disease giving insects. Yet they thanked God for those bugs. Why? Because of the bugs the soldiers never came into the sleeping quarters. The soldiers didn’t want to get bitten. Corrie and her sister were able to hold prayer and praise meetings in their room without fear of being disrupted by unsympathetic soldiers. Throughout their ordeal they never lost sight of a higher power and their goal of glorifying God in their lifetime.

Now that inspires me when little silly obstacles in comparison come my way. I have a goal to care for my family. I have a goal to give my customers more than they expect. I have a goal to feel accomplished at the end of the day. And I also have a goal to recognize God is the one in control. When I focus on those goals I stay motivated towards success.

What are your goals for 2009? What small step can you take today to get closer to your end goal?

Moving forward,

Jeff Roach
www.brooketraining.com
www.transportationtraining.com
www.justintimefreight.com