Derek Leathers is the Vice Chairman, President and CEO of Werner Enterprises, a global industry leader. Leathers has over 29 years of experience in the transportation and logistics industry.
Werner Enterprises – We Keep America Moving.
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Drive Werner – Search Professional Truck Driver Jobs at Werner Enterprises
3 Value Bombs
1) Have an internal commitment to continuous learning and be open-minded – ask for feedback from other people.
2) Be hardworking in any business you go into, focus on how many complicated problems you can solve, be visible, foster relationships with people who genuinely care about you, and learn from them and spend time with them.
3) Recognize acceptable risks and take them.
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Today’s Audio MASTERCLASS: Disrupting The Status Quo In The Logistics Industry with Derek Leathers
[1:31] – Derek shares something interesting about himself that most people do not know.
- He loves to cook. He grew up with a family that loves to spend time around the kitchen.
[3:16] – How did you get to where you are today?
- After college, he thought his path was in investments and banking, but he worked as a dispatcher to fill in the gaps because of an economic downturn.
- The moment he started talking to drivers, it just felt right.
- He rode the wave he was on, took the risk, chose to be a dispatcher, and gave up being an investment banker – and it worked well for him.
- He made a lot of mistakes, but he learned from them and got better along the way.
[6:00] – What is Werner Enterprises, and what are your job duties as a Fortune 500 CEO?
- Werner Enterprises is a premier truckload transportation and logistics company – they help customers worldwide move their goods and products at the lowest cost possible. They have about 13,000 associates and were founded in 1956.
- One of Derek’s day-to-day duties as a Fortune 500 CEO is ensuring the company’s culture and people are top notch.
[9:49] – What is the single most significant change in logistics over the past several years, and how are you currently dealing with it?
- The most significant change in logistics is integrating technology into what has traditionally been making decisions
- Network optimization.
- Machine learning – Artificial Intelligence.
- Use of technical tools to remotely manage their workforce.
[11:39] – How has Werner Enterprises adjusted to the changing world to disrupt the status quo?
- Werner Enterprises has adjusted by providing diagnostics and solutions to its customers from the usual one-way trucking business.
- They have also launched their logistics business.
[16:13] – What are the core values of Werner Enterprises, and why are they important?
- The foundation of Werner Enterprises’ core value is integrity.
- Derek believes that none of the other values matter if you do not have integrity and the people around you.
- The pillars of Werner Enterprises are Teamwork, Community, Innovation, and Leadership.
- The pillars of Werner Enterprises supports safety and service.
[18:01] – How have you navigated Werner Enterprise through this global pandemic?
- They knew they had to stay available for business even though there is a global pandemic.
- 50% worked from the office, and the other 50% worked from home remotely.
- They created a safe and confident work environment in the office.
- They improved their communication and kept the team informed.
[21:59] – What is the absolute best advice you’ve received over your tenure as a businessman?
- Have an internal commitment to continuous learning and be open-minded – ask for feedback from other people.
[23:47] – What is a terrible piece of advice you received?
- The command and control approach.
[25:09] – What advice would you give to our listeners who are trying to make their way in the business world today?
- Be hardworking in any business you go into, focus on how many complicated problems you can solve, be visible, foster relationships with people who genuinely care about you, and learn from them and spend time with them.
- Recognize acceptable risks and take them.
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