One thing I discovered early in my career is that clients like treats but don’t care at all for tricks. That is why I have always taken an approach of transparency and full disclosure in my business.
As part of that philosophy, I offer this warning to anyone who might need the services of a ground transportation professional. Beware of anyone in this business who will give you a 100 percent guarantee that that a project they undertake for you will go flawlessly from start to finish. I personally have a wealth of experience and education in the ground transportation logistics business and in calmly and effectively managing surprises (flaws!) that can and do unexpectedly occur even with the most thorough planning.
When I say personally, what I mean is that I am the person who will consult with you at the start of the project and I am the person who will be standing at the curb in the rain, sleet, or snow at 3 p.m. or 3 a.m.
I know that understanding the overall project involves far more than just taking direction from my clients. I also know that having a firm grasp of a client’s needs and a project’s goals requires an honest exchange of ideas and consultation about all the potential challenges that can occur during any project.
These challenges are what I think of at this time of the year as tricks. Here’s what I mean by that. I have been there when a bus full of passengers headed to an arena was stopped at a railroad crossing as a 150-car freight train blocked traffic, moving along at what seemed like a snail’s pace. I know the frustration when thousands of motorcycles roar down main street and cut off access to the host hotel because it is on the opposite side of the street of the parade route. I have experienced the sense of panic when faced with the need to “rescue” lost passengers in another country by speaking a different language with no translator at 5 a.m. Other “tricks” I’ve been faced with include airports shutting down and volcanoes on the other side of the world.
Whatever “tricky” situation may occur, I approach my business with the attitude that I must be prepared to deal with it. People sometimes jokingly tell me that my thinking is old school. But I don’t look at it as old school at all. I look at it as being prepared and ready to give my client a treat.
We live in a world that relies heavily on technology. It is a world I embrace. Technology allows me to track the locations of vehicles down to a few seconds to determine where people are and when they can expect to arrive at their destination. It allows me to communicate freely via cell phone. It allows me to text information without the hindrance of someone possibly mishearing information. I love these advancements! What an amazing difference from just a few years ago when we had to search in many different places to find information. Now, we just search the Internet, and the information is magically there.
Because of technology, I am able to create detailed information handouts that lay out clear expectations. I am able to view in an instant the list of drivers and vehicles in the 20-bus operation I am organizing. I also print these sheets. Why? Because you never know when you might be faced with an unexpected trick. You never know when the power will go out, when your mobile device will fall down a storm drain. You just never know. And, like my clients, I, too, don’t like tricks in the form of last-minute surprises.
I plan and manage every project with great detail. I review all the components and communicate any challenges to my clients. I am a consultant who shares every element of the project and who educates my clients every step of the way. My efforts allow them to make informed decisions. We work together to identify and understand all that is necessary to produce an excellent project.
So, if you are willing to take the chance that your transportation plans might be surprised by a trick you are going to have to call on someone else. On the other hand, if you want your transportation needs to be rewarded with a treat, I can surely assist you through proper planning and preparation. It would give me great pleasure to do that. In the meantime, have fun and stay safe during this spooky time of the year.