An often overlooked aspect of modern business and sales is the transportation component. Companies around the country ship goods and products every day with totals adding up to the millions in terms of value and weight every year. Shipping is a key component of any supply chain and issues with the transportation of goods and supplies can greatly impact a business. The importance of freight and transport has created many industries and areas of need to keep the process running as smoothly as possible. A fright agent plays a key role in the shipping process and with the right steps, you can fast-track your freight agent program into a respected and profitable business.
Fast Tracking your Business and Avoiding Bad Time Management
As a freight agent, you are a valuable part of the supply chain helping shippers find services able to transport said goods. However, like all businesses, it requires you have the right strategies in place to maximize your earnings and success. One area of key importance is managing your time properly. There are many common work activities that if not properly managed can become an unneeded time sink. Here are four activities and bad habits to avoid.
- Trying to Do Everything at Once: anyone who starts their own business has a high degree of drive and passion for success. While certainly good things, these same traits make it very easy to fall into the trap where you think you have to do everything yourself. If you have coworkers and subordinates, learn how to delegate and spread out common work tasks to avoid becoming overloaded on what you can realistically accomplish. No matter your business size learning to prioritize is important, as while things do need to be done not everything has to be done at the same time or carries the same amount of urgency.
- Being Busy For Its Own Sake: every job has common tasks and needs and part of proper time management is knowing when not to get caught in the fine details. It’s very easy to get sidetracked on common tasks and inadvertently avoid more critical business needs. Tracking key performance factors and devoting the proper amount of time to them allows your work to yield the most positive results.
- Proper Phone and Email Management: as a freight agent communicating with your clients is an essential part of the job as building personal relationships with shippers and freight services is what drives your business. However, proper management of communication is required to ensure mission-critical needs are taken care of and those requests or questions that can be dealt with on a longer timetable are given proper priority.
- Too Many Meetings: as your business grows you will gain more clients and likely when it becomes large enough more employees. Meetings can be a time management issue in many industries due to overuse and a lack of clear goals. By requiring all meetings to have a stated goal, agenda, and timeframe you avoid wasted time and situations where a meeting was called when another method would have been more practical (such as a company-wide email).
Starting any business is a challenge and there will be a learning curve. By being focused on what matters and learning from any mistakes and setbacks you can set yourself up for success. Another factor to keep in mind is that you should always be willing to learn from experts and related materials such as books, eBooks, and references. Seeing how the pros have handled many of the same issues you are (or will be) encountering can give you sound insight on what to do next.