Spotlight Special Edition – Opportunity Knocks
The Success In Trucking Expo Returns to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in June for SITE 2020
Following a strong opening in 2019 as one of the most impactful events within the trucking industry, the Success In Trucking Expo (SITE) presented by ES will be returning in June to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Complex. The SITE 2020 takes place June 5-6.
Through the efforts of ES, the participating carriers, sponsors and vendors, the SITE features an atmosphere and structure that stands out as unique when compared to the traditional truck shows currently on the calendar. The SITE, as evidenced by the inaugural event in 2019, is a much more personal, hands-on event. The focus of the SITE 2020 will once again be placed upon connecting with professional drivers who are looking to take the next step in their careers and become truck owners. The SITE is also designed to help address the needs of contract drivers, owner-operators and fleet owners.
“The response from everyone who attended the first edition of the SITE in 2019 and the response that ES and our participating carriers have seen in the months since the event made a compelling case to hold the SITE 2020,” said ES Chief Operating Officer Jeff Tacker. “We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to return to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Complex. We are looking forward to being back at the speedway working with our community of participating carriers, vendors and sponsors. We are already working on plans for this year’s event, and it promises to have a greater impact than what we did in our first year.”
Stoops Freightliner-Quality Trailer, a division of Truck Country, will be returning as the title sponsor for the Success In Trucking Expo. ES will make an official announcement with a press release in January that will highlight the participating carriers, sponsors and vendors that will be a part of the SITE 2020.
Those attending the SITE 2020 will have the opportunity to become acquainted with and enjoy the fellowship of the ES Community. Attendees will get a sense of the deep commitment and the comprehensive support provided to ES ownership program participants. The fleets and vendors participating in the SITE program have been hand-picked by ES because of their desire to help the attendees in reaching their goals within the trucking industry.
Who Should Consider Attending The SITE?
- Professional drivers who have an interest or desire to become truck owners.
- Current owner-operators looking to upgrade or who are considering expanding their operation to become fleet owners.
- Fleet owners looking to grow their current fleets in either the Expedited or General Trucking markets.
The program format of SITE 2020, with its speakers, roundtable discussions and chosen topics, will be designed to share the industry knowledge and the practical experience to benefit the attendees as they look to build, upgrade and expand their businesses.
The 150 Business Challenge, the collaborative initiative by ES and the Women In Trucking Association to create 150 women-owned businesses in transportation, will be among the featured programs discussed during the SITE 2020. To date, the 150 Business Challenge is more than halfway toward reaching its initial goal.
Whether or not the next step is taken toward truck ownership, attendees will leave the SITE 2020 with a deeper understanding of what is taking place in the trucking industry and the opportunities available on the road ahead.
Free Hotel Stay For Pre-Qualified Registrants
Once again this year, one of the most unique features about the SITE 2020 is that ES is offering free hotel accommodations for a select group of pre-qualified Expo registrants. There are a limited number free hotel slots available for the event, and ES recommends that anyone interested in attending the SITE complete the online registration form. Attendees receiving a free hotel stay for the SITE will be chosen from the registration submissions received by ES. You can go directly to the SITE registration form by clicking here.
To learn more about the SITE 2020, please visit SuccessInTruckingExpo.com.
Women Helping Women Achieve Success In Trucking
Considering the growth in the number of women participating in the truck ownership and support programs offered through ES during the past several years, it’s quite fitting that Kelly Faller and April Holland can be found in the work spaces that are closest to the front door at the ES Headquarters building just outside of Memphis.
Kelly, who is part of the ES Sales Team, is most often the person visitors to the headquarters first see as she also works in the front-desk reception area for the company. Meanwhile, April, who is the Owner-Operator Program Coordinator at ES, works in the office located a few feet from the spot where Kelly greets everyone walking through the front door. One of the highlights of April’s position with ES is the opportunity to extend an official welcome and complete the paperwork for the newest members of the continually expanding ES Community.
Over the past few years, the number of women starting trucking businesses and utilizing the comprehensive services offered through ES has been steadily rising. In addition to launching and advancing their trucking careers through ES as independent contract drivers, owner-operators and fleet owners, a growing number of women are leveraging the strong network of essential services including industry-leading fuel discounts, maintenance, insurance coverage, business advisory and back office support.
In the latter part of 2017, ES and the Women In Trucking Association announced the 150 Business Challenge, a collaborative initiative between the organizations to create 150 women-owned businesses in transportation. Over the past two years, the 150 Business Challenge has made an impact within the industry. Today, the program stands more than halfway toward achieving its initial goal.
The popularity of what ES has to offer aspiring women entrepreneurs within the trucking industry is best reflected in the fact that 38 percent of the owner-operators, independent contract drivers and fleet owners in the ES Community are women. By comparison, the national average for women in the driver’s seat of a truck has been running at seven to eight percent over the past few years. To place a finer point on the reputation that programs from ES are gaining among women either in the industry or thinking about trucking as a career, consider the following: Nearly four out of every 10 members of the ES Community is a woman.
“I joined ES after the company’s first year, and I’ve had the opportunity to see the growth and be a part of it. I really enjoy being able to tell people this is what my company does, and it makes me quite proud to know that ES has become one of the leaders in the trucking industry in providing opportunities for women,” said April. “After all the paperwork is done and someone is out in their new truck for the first time, I’ll try to call them after they have delivered their first load. I’ll ask them how does it feel to become a truck owner, to be running your own business? To hear their reaction and to know I have been a part of that process is one of the most satisfying parts of my job.”
April and Kelly are just part of an accomplished ES office staff that features a group of talented women who are focused on supporting all the members of the ES Community. Unlike April who had previously worked with a moving company, Kelly had no experience in transportation when she joined ES five years ago.
“I came from retail and I knew nothing about the trucking industry when I was hired at ES,” she explained. “It was a total career switch for me, and I love seeing the progression that can happen with people in the ES program. I have seen so many people come to ES as an independent contractor and then get the opportunity to realize their dream to become a truck owner. It’s really something to be involved in handling the paperwork and to see the hard work people put into the program to make a dream come true. I’ve seen the truck ownership opportunities available through ES change lives for both women and men, and it’s always neat to be a part of the big day when someone gets their new truck.”
One of Kelly’s favorite experiences during her time at ES took place in the late Spring this year, just weeks prior to the inaugural edition of the Success In Trucking Expo (SITE). Kelly had watched Angela Bowen progress through the ES Path To Ownership Program. Kelly could see the strong desire that Angela had to become a truck owner. Angela had worked diligently as an independent contractor within the program, positioning herself to have an opportunity to buy her own truck from ES.
“Angela really wanted to become a truck owner, and it was a thrill to see her be able to achieve that dream,” said Kelly. “We were getting ready for the SITE when Angela got her truck. And it was a real special moment for me to see Angela come to the SITE in Indianapolis with her mom. They were both overjoyed that Angela had become a truck owner. What ES does for people interested in this industry is amazing. A lot of people don’t see women as truck drivers or truck owners. I know that I didn’t before I got into the industry and joined ES. More and more women are taking advantage of the opportunities and programs that ES provides, and it’s been fun to see the growth happen.”
April began her career at ES as a Service Coordinator working directly with the people behind the wheel in the ES Community, serving as a liaison between the carrier utilizing the capacity and the professionals aboard the truck. She was the second Service Coordinator hired by ES, and she eventually oversaw 75 trucks.
When ES expanded its ownership offerings and launched the Path To Ownership Program, the company saw the need to create the Owner-Operator Program Coordinator position. Having joined the company following its first year, April believed there was a strong value for the Owner-Operator Program Coordinator to understand the history of ES and how the company works to support people accessing the programs and services available from ES. April discussed how this type of experience could help the person in the new position with ES Chief Operating Officer Jeff Tacker. The next question Jeff asked of April changed her career path within the company.
“Jeff asked me if I would like to be involved in the program and do that job. I immediately said yes, and it’s been very rewarding for me,” said April. “I like helping people, and ES gave me the opportunity. They trusted me to work with every owner-operator who comes into the program. There is a great family atmosphere at ES. They will take their time in finding the right people for the job. I’ve seen through the years that it doesn’t matter if you are a man or a woman. They look for the best person who can do the job. It’s the same way with ownership opportunities. Can you do what it takes to run a successful trucking business? Over the past few years, we have seen a lot of women show that they can step up and operate stable and profitable trucking businesses.”
When April is away from the office and traveling for vacation, she passes part of the time on the trip looking for members of the ES Community working on the road to help to move the American economy one mile at a time. In those moments when she identifies a truck from the ES Community, April immediately begins to think about who is behind the wheel. And with the growth of participation by women in the programs offered through ES, April knows the odds of who she might see driving the truck.
“There’s a pretty good chance that I’ll see a woman in the driver’s seat,” said April. “And when I see any of the women or men we have helped over the years, it gives me a sense of pride and accomplishment. I have a lot of respect for all the professional drivers out on the road. I have really enjoyed working with the people in our programs. There’s nothing like the feeling of watching someone find a better life and having the opportunity to help them make the most of their opportunity.”
In addition to speaking with April and Kelly for this story, we talked with a few of the women who are part of the staff supporting the members of the ES Community. To feature their observations about the industry and ES, we now present the following Q&A…
What do you like most about your role at ES?
Natasha Thomas, Settlement Coordinator: “I just love the environment and the vibe you get from everyone here. Everyone’s really nice, really looking out for each other. With our owners and our contractors, we’re really trying to make sure that everybody’s successful. I really like how ES looks out for everyone in the ES Community. Seeing all the women in the program is awesome. They are getting the opportunity to start their companies. It’s a great thing to see.”
What do like most about the trucking industry?
Sandra Bechel, Owner-Operator Settlements: “I like working with the people who are out on the road. I like talking to them. I like just making sure everything runs smoothly on their settlement so that they do not have to worry about their settlement checks. I try to take care of everything so that they don’t have to. It’s always impressed me with just how much the leadership of ES cares about their employees. That same type of care and concern is also very present in the way that they work with everyone in the ES Community.”
What impresses you about the programs that ES offers for truck ownership?
Debbie Acker, Accounts Payable: “I had my CDL and I drove over the road earlier in my career. If ES had been around when I was driving, I would probably still be out there and owning my own truck. I have always been impressed with how they really work with you to get you into the ownership program. And what ES has done to promote opportunities for women to become truck owners is wonderful. You have the opportunity to make a lot of money as a truck owner, and the support that ES provides definitely positions you for success. ES stands with you and, while it requires a commitment from the people in the program, ES makes becoming a successful truck owner about as simple as possible.”
What makes ES stand out from other companies working in transportation?
Kim Chambers, Recruiting Administration: “I have worked in transportation now for 28 years, and I could tell from the minute I walked in the door that ES was different than any other company where I had worked. I’ve always felt like I was in a family here. I learned very quickly that most of the people who join ES have been here a long time, which says a whole lot about a company working in transportation. I think what ES is doing with the Women In Trucking Association and the 150 Business Challenge is terrific. ES has made the commitment to expand ownership opportunities for women, and ES is making a difference in the industry.”
What has been one of your more rewarding experiences during your time at ES?
Alicia Leslie, Service Coordinator: “I’ve been with the company for 12 years, and I would have to say it’s been great to see the people behind the wheel in the ES Community progress from entering the program as an independent contract driver to eventually owning their own truck, with some even owning a fleet of trucks. It really makes you feel good to know that you’re a part of that because there are some fleet owners who started out in my fleet. Now, they’re back with me again. And, you just help them grow, and grow, and grow. What ES has done to promote opportunities for women is just amazing. Over my 12 years here, I have not been surprised to see the growth of the company and the growth of the programs offered by ES. It’s a wonderful company with wonderful people.”
Listen Up! NTI COO & SiriusXM Radio Host Leah Shaver Discusses Trucking Market
In this edition of the podcast, Leah Shaver will be joining us to talk about a range of topics that we know will be of interest for all professional drivers, fleet owners and anyone involved in the business of trucking. Leah is the Chief Operating Officer of the National Transportation Institute, and she also serves on the Board of Directors for the Women In Trucking Association. Regular listeners to SiriusXM radio and the Road Dog Trucking Radio have likely heard Leah as a host on Channel 146 or through the SiriusXM app. Leah is one of the trucking industry’s leading experts on compensation for professional drivers and owner-operators. Through her work at NTI, Leah studies market trends in the trucking industry and she is a strong advocate for promoting opportunities for women in all roles across the trucking industry.
. To listen, click on the SoundCloud icon below.