Posts Tagged ‘Primary Freight Services’

Turning Fear into Action

May 3, 2010

I’m lucky; I like and respect pretty much everyone that I get to work with.  But sometimes, a client will say or do something that really makes me think about things in a new way.  Recently this happened when I was talking with my client, John Brown of Primary Freight Services.

John mentioned to me that he tries really hard to not allow fear to effect his judgment in business.  In fact he said, “I often have to ask myself: what would I do if I wasn’t afraid.”

Powerful words.

Hearing this got me thinking about a variety of things that I might do differently in my work, if I wasn’t afraid.

Years ago, I battled and overcame the demons of fear regarding media relations.  I was chronically afraid to pick up the phone and boldly pitch story ideas to reporters I’d never talked to, and had at least in my mind, put on a pedestal.

I walked through that fear, day in and day out, challenging myself to write and deliver strong, meaningful story ideas and pitches to media, building relationships along the way.  The result:  I am no longer afraid of media relations.  In fact, I love it.

I acted as if I wasn’t afraid, even though I was, and overcame it.

Powerful actions.

As a result of facing those fears and becoming strong and confident in media relations, I’ve won almost a dozen awards, am viewed my by peers and coworkers as an expert and a resource, and most importantly, I’m able to pass those skills along to others in my field.

If I’d been paralyzed by fear, I may have changed careers before I’d ever had a chance to see where this journey would take me.  What a shame that would have been!

Powerful results.

So, what would you do in your business if you weren’t afraid?  Would you fight to save jobs instead of handing out pink slips?  Would you stretch your personal abilities to grow expertise in areas that you know you need, but feel afraid to reach for?

Whatever the answer, I think it is the question that is important to ask ourselves over and over:  What would I do if I wasn’t afraid?


Winning Workplaces

February 2, 2010

I’ve been thinking about my clients’ workplaces a lot the past few weeks. Working in the PR industry, I’ve become accustomed to asking clients the question, “tell me about your workplace – what makes your culture special?” This is a standard question in our industry and a theme we often play off of in our work with the media.

So why has this been on my mind lately? Because I recently finalized a nomination for Inc. Magazine’s Winning Workplaces annual award for one of my clients, global freight and logistics experts Primary Freight Services.

Primary Freight's LA Headquarters Team

The application was long, 7 pages to be exact. But the nomination questions were thoughtful and really got me thinking about what makes a workplace unique and special.  The questionnaire included queries about workplace culture, growing talent within the ranks, team building exercises, and exceptions to the rule made for key staff. Primary Freight Services is a company that deserves to win this award, or at the very least be among those recognized, for a variety of reasons.

I’ve spent some time at Primary Freight’s offices, and one thing I’ve witnessed every time I’ve been there is joy in the workplace. The brother/sister team that has built the company from the ground up (John Brown, CEO, and Kathy Hogan, President) has created a very special environment for their staff. For example, this past year John decided to bring some healthy competition into the office and launched a company-wide Wii bowling tournament. Every staff member participated, from creating avatars to wearing wild-colored matching bowling shirts. Team spirit could not be denied.

The winning Avatar - and yes, they were all this good!

This was in large part done to battle the spiraling morale felt due to the crushing blow of the recession. Despite the business’s need to do a small round of layoffs and require all staff to endure a period of furlough days, team spirit runs deep in the veins of Primary Freight Services staff as a result of the on-going team building.

And as I learn more about each of the staff members, I am struck with their amazing stories of personal and workplace growth. Individuals that the company hired on a “hunch” or identified as “diamonds in the rough” are now leading divisions of the organization, and are viewed as leaders in the industry, thanks to the training, mentoring and quality supervision they were given.

Primary Freight Services is a company that really cares about its staff, and shows it through quality training programs, team building exercises and realistic goals, matched with public recognition and praise. I’m impressed by their workplace; it always feels good to walk down their halls.

So, think for a minute about what your workplace is like and what makes it special?  These really are important questions to ask. I think we should all take some time to think about our workplace and culture, make changes to the elements that aren’t working, and celebrate the things that are!