Contributing author Joey Slaughter is the owner of Blue Ridge Transport, LLC. A Ringgold, VA based carrier. Joey started his company in 2010 after serving time as an unhappy employee with a local trucking company. The time spent there was not fun but, in hindsight, was a turning point that propelled Joey into the wonderful world of being an entrepreneur. Please visit JoeySlaughter.net for more insightful blogging.
While serving in Iraq, I worked for an officer that reminded me that we need to operate cheaper, better and faster with the tax payers money. As someone who isn’t fond of paying taxes, I appreciated his willingness to be a faithful steward of the taxpayer’s money. However, some of my peers told me that you can only pick two; you can’t have three. I believe that as well, but I do think we should strive for all three and that will put us miles ahead of our competition.
Just this week, I saw the mantra of “cheaper, better, faster” in action as I went to pickup a load of building materials at a storage facility that was going to a construction site. There was another driver there loading up for the same place and when we were in the shipping office, the supervisor told us that the load weighed 53,000 lbs. We told him that we couldn’t transport that legally as we could only scale about 48,000 lbs. The supervisor told us that a certain flatbed carrier (one that you’ve heard of) brought the product in legally and he wondered why we couldn’t do it. The other carrier uses all aluminum trailers, wide based singles and one fuel tank on their daycabs. The other driver was angry at the fact that this transport company was operating cheaper, better and faster than we were. I wasn’t mad at all. That is the natural order of things. It’s the competition between us all that makes us better and pushes us further to better serve our customers.
While it may be difficult to obtain all three at once, we need to try to stay competitive. I decided to have my company concentrate on “good” and “fast” and I have that under control. That leaves the “cheap” to work on and strive to conquer. I’m making some ground by getting better fuel mileage and I always choose in advance where I purchase fuel based on price before state tax. This helps me to improve on the third challenge of the triangle.