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Shipper Symposium 2014 – Day 1 Recap

Posted - May 13, 2014

Shipper Symposium 2014 – Day 1 Recap

Did you know 20 Reagan National Airports can fit inside the sprawling expanse of DFW and that this airport ranks 4th in operations and 10th in number of passengers serviced nationwide? These fun facts about Dallas reminded us of why we’re here this week and helped to get our first day rolling as we prepared to listen to an array of speakers at the 12th annual Shipper Symposium. Many transportation, economic and industry luminaries are here to learn, talk about logistics, build relationships and much more. We’re going to do our best to share our favorite highlights of Day 1. Read on to see what you might’ve missed!

Todd Buchholz

Todd Buchholz

First up was keynote speaker Economist, Todd Buchholz. He kicked us off with his presentation, “Competing in a Chaotic Economy” by asking ‘How do we manage in an economy that’s chaotic and continues to be chaotic?.’ Living in a world that can suddenly turn upside down has led to what he termed the “age of anxiety” and that we now “live in a world of hyper-competition where speed is of the essence.”  While he’s bullish on the US economy recovering (it will be ‘a steady, grinding recovery’ according to Buchholz), he’s quick to point out that to make it in today’s world it doesn’t matter if your business is first, it’s much more important to be the best. The determining factor? Your partners.

Next up was Frank McGuigan, George Abernathy and Steve Golich – leadership from Transplace and Celtic International, respectively, who gave us insight on the focus and future of Transplace’s business units and areas of service. The net-net? It’s a great time to be a 3PL and there’s significant opportunity for growth. One of our favorite highlights from today was seeing the Transplace Mexico executive team receiving company awards for their commitment to outstanding service and organizational improvement.

From left to right: Tom Sanderson, Jose Minarro, Tony Cossentino, Troy Ryley, Ben Enriquez, George Abernathy From left to right: Tom Sanderson, Jose Minarro, Tony Cossentino, Troy Ryley, Ben Enriquez, George Abernathy

Transplace CEO, Tom Sanderson, took the stage next to update everyone on company’s last 12 months and what the near future is shaping into. Tom’s passion – evident when speaking and if you know him – is focused on challenging regulatory issues that need to change to better the transportation and logistics industry. Touching on capacity, Hours-of-Service, CSA and the Highway Trust Fund – Tom suggested ways to address these challenges such as converting truckload to intermodal moves, employing smart bidding and being a carrier-friendly shipper.

Neal Petersen Neal Petersen

Last but not least was Neal Petersen – an extreme solo racing yachtsman who told an inspiring story centered on “No Barriers – Only Solutions!”  Neal talked about adversities that can happen in life and in logistics – we’ve all experienced them – but, he emphasized, it’s how we choose to play the hand we’re dealt that determines “whether we carry baggage or a treasure chest.” He challenged attendees to find a solution to whatever barrier they’re facing – “The answers are out there, you just have to get creative in how you find them and who might help you along the way.”

What did you learn from Day 1 of the Shipper Symposium?