Whenever stepping out to the edge in business or contemplating a change we often hear the sky is falling, the world is coming to an end, as we know it, and many doom and gloom prophecies...  When we made the announcement that we were leaving our so-called stable and secure jobs we were bombarded by many negative comments by many of our naysayer friends.
 
 
 

While talking with a friend, we started discussing how the shifting sands of a business parallel the shifting sands of life.  We went from a stable environment at our parent’s house to being married and having to adjust to the creations of our own environment.  Soon we had a child from an unplanned pregnancy and lifestyle changed again. A second unplanned child created different challenges and twenty years later we were empty nesters, which allowed further lifestyle adjustments.  With each change in our life we adjusted and moved on to accommodate the changes.   After each change we survived and continued to thrive and enjoy life.
 
When we left our "secure" jobs and started our trucking business we had time to think about the changes before making them.  We were able to plan our future instead of how in our personal lives the changes hit us like a ton of bricks and then we adjusted. 
 
When we bought our first truck we read the sky is falling and with all of the changes coming in trucking it was not a good time get into trucking or to buy a truck.  The carrier that we picked many years ago was going through changes and who knows how stable they would be in the future and what their future plans where.    Hours of service were changing for the worse and many seasoned drivers were going to leave, as it was so bad we.  Most everything we read was the sky is falling and the end as we know is coming.
 
Well we bought that first truck, leased on to a carrier we researched, adjusted with the changes to the Hours of Service and now we are getting ready to purchase our third truck.  Still we are hearing the same doom and gloom and from many of the same people.
 
I was recently asked "Are you worried about buying a new truck right now?" the quick answer was "NO".  We are not stuck to only one business model and our business model can change over night.  Maybe the type of freight we enjoy hauling now will not be available tomorrow, that is not a worry as their will always be freight, our business model is to place us in the best possible situation so that we are able to take advantage of what ever we can.   We can change our plans over night and continue to be available for freight.
 
Over the past ten years our business model has changed often as our surroundings have changed.  If we were like concrete and could not absorb these changes we would be like concrete stuck and out of business.  We are more like the shifting sands constantly moving and constantly looking for ways to improve our business and to stay on top of our game. 
 
We have learned to go with what we know.  Our research was done with the company and not at the truck stop counter.   Whenever the naysayers start to get to us I look at my spreadsheets, our income, and our expenses and that is how we decide our next move.
 

Comments (8)

Linda Caffee

Bob and Linda started their driver careers after their children left home for college in 2000. Bob started as a driver for a large motor carrier with Linda as a rider. They decided to enter the Expedite industry as team drivers in 2005 and purchased their first Freightliner. Both, Bob and Linda have had their Class A licenses since the early 80's starting out driving in the oil field and hauling grain as fill in drivers where Bob worked as a diesel mechanic. Linda worked at the local country courthouse in data processing.

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Kurt my favorite thing I hear is when back in the days it was perfect... When was that perfect time? People entering the trucking industry right now will set this time as the bench mark for the perfect time. Those that adapt will prosper. Thank you for your insight and commenting.

May 16, 2014 13:35:09 PM

I often wonder how many drivers are capable of driving a truck, as their business plan, or lack there of, shows that they are not capable of operating a calculator! Yes times have certainly changed, along with everything else, but you must adapt and pay attention to the details to remain profitable.

May 15, 2014 17:02:56 PM

Thank You Greg - like everyone else sometimes we find ourselves getting excited when talking with others or listening to the counter talk. Facts speak volumes ....

May 15, 2014 5:49:20 AM

Great article Linda. People need to do their research rather than listen to gossip and nay-sayers. Be flexible and make the necessary adjustments.

May 14, 2014 19:59:08 PM

Jeff, we have watched friends leave a company where they were doing well because they listened to others, or a policy was changed that was not to their liking. In most instances if they would have taken their emotions out of the equation they would have stayed where they were. Having a good network of colleagues and having a good set of books helps to keep us on track.

May 13, 2014 1:52:11 AM

Could not agree more Tyrone.

May 13, 2014 1:49:37 AM

GREAT READ IF I LISTEN TO EVERY PERSON ABOUT BEING AN OOP I WOULD NOT BE WHERE I AM TODAY.LIVE LIFE AND HAVE NO REGRETS.

May 12, 2014 21:07:57 PM

The line about your research not being done at the truck stop counter nails it.

May 12, 2014 12:45:39 PM