Moving ahead

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In today’s world, staying ahead of the competition means continually looking for new and better ways to do things. That’s especially true in trucking, where margins are thin and there’s always a competitor nipping at your heels.

That’s why Commercial Carrier Journal started its Innovators program two years ago. The program, which is sponsored by PeopleNet and Freightliner Trucks, recognizes carriers of all types and sizes for finding smarter ways to do business. Each month we highlight a carrier, and in turn each of those carriers is considered for the highest honor: Innovator of the Year. By the time you read this, we will have named our 2006 Innovator of the Year at a special event in the Florida Keys.

Since the program’s inception, we’ve recognized carriers for a wide range of innovations, including:

· Developing a consortium of trucking companies to obtain state funding for a driver-training simulator;
· Implementing a 99-cent owner-operator fuel guarantee;
· Creating a partnership with a bank and driving school to expand the driver pool; and
· Launching mobile business training for owner-operators.

None of these innovations was conceived in hopes of winning an award. Each was driven by that company’s desire to solve a problem, improve a process or position itself better for the future.

It’s no different at CCJ’s parent company, Randall-Reilly Publishing. Founded on entrepreneurship more than 70 years ago, Randall-Reilly recently underwent a management buyout that will help ensure its ability to grow and prosper in the years ahead.

With the desire for growth comes a need for development of new products to better serve the needs of our customers. To that end, I am proud to say that I’ve been tapped to help our company meet its growth objectives by spearheading a new initiative in the used truck market.

As vice president of business development, I’m happy to say that I’ll still be in touch with the many friends I’ve made during my six years with CCJ. And I’m excited that Jeff Mason, vice president and group publisher of the Randall-Reilly Trucking Media Group, will be working with Alan Welborn, CCJ’s associate publisher, to lead CCJ into 2006 and beyond.

Without innovation, companies – whether in publishing, trucking or any other industry – cannot achieve long-term success. Here’s to the many innovative things each of you do each day to keep your company, and the entire trucking industry, moving forward.