When you’re in the business of interviewing, your demographic is pretty uniform: successful, accomplished, happy people. These individuals speak with charisma, and while being cautious to specify that I don’t refer to arrogance, they typically are able to speak about their accomplishments with ease.
Daniel certainly possesses charisma, but when asked to recount his accomplishments, I found him repeatedly downplaying his own victories. This wasn’t because of a lack of accomplishment or the magnitude thereof, but rather, Daniel is unbelievably humble. It seemed that whenever an achievement was brought up in the conversation, always by myself, Daniel was rapid to credit his coach and peers.
Such an individual finds a comfortable spot in the England Logistics culture, and as he has done, will likely pioneer its progress in the coming years.
Daniel began his career at England Logistics as an Account Manager in March of 2019. By his eagerness to be taught and improve, complimented by his intense work ethic, Daniel was promoted to Account Manager 2 this past spring, with his next promotion on the immediate horizon. Daniel celebrated one year of working with EL on March 14, 2020.
EL: I’ve heard from a couple of different sources that your story is pretty unique and remarkable. Would you tell me about how you came to England Logistics [EL]?
Daniel: I brought myself on to EL. I found the career opportunity on Indeed and decided to apply. With the job location being within ten miles of my home, I took a leap of faith and went to the job site to try and meet a recruiter. Upon entering the facility, I met the location manager and the rest is history.
EL: I want to make sure we give you all the credit we can, I heard a rumor that you came and knocked on the door, didn’t you?
Daniel: [Laughing] Yes, I did! I wasn’t sure how far people had gone with the story. I came up to the location, I pulled in, and I saw a door where everybody was going in. I came around the very front of where the logistics portion actually takes place and ran into two guys, Rodney and Ben. They redirected me to the right place.
EL: You were already networking!
Daniel: I spoke with a few different individuals, and finally I was introduced to the location manager.
EL: And also from what I understand, you had an impromptu interview and you were a great fit, right? That’s how it came to be?
Daniel: Yea. We sat down, we discussed what they were looking for, and he gave me an equation: Attitude + Effort = Success.
EL: Well your effort and attitude are demonstrated in that story alone. With that being said, I understand that you have been quite successful here. What would you attribute your success to?
“I can attribute my success to consistent coaching, and motivation from my logistics coach, Gregory.”
Daniel: From the first day he gave me the tools I needed to be successful. He has always supported me in my decisions and offered constructive criticism. I came into this job not having call-center experience and not having logistics experience, and a lot of the habits I learned were from him. He’s always steered me in the right direction, so I can attribute it not only to hard work and determination but, definitely Greg.
EL: There’s a ton of humility in your answer. I agree that coaching does go a long way, but it takes a special person to heed that coaching. You partially answered this question, but who has had the most impact on you here at EL? Would you say that it was Greg then?
Daniel: For sure. Like I said, from day one, I’ve looked towards him as a big brother more than a logistics coach, at work and outside of work.
EL: It really makes life a lot easier when you have those relationships in your workplace too and you feel close to individuals like that.
Daniel: It definitely makes my days a lot smoother. It puts me at ease to know I have a boss like him.
EL: It’s nice to know someone has your back. How do you feel like you, personally, contribute to the culture of EL?
Daniel: From my understanding, EL is centered on highlighting individual strengths, and celebrating each of their wins. I try to contribute to the culture by celebrating with my team daily when they achieve their KPIs, and then acknowledging their individual accomplishments.
“When we celebrate and point to those celebrations, they help improve the morale of the team and they make each of our days exciting.”
Everybody comes in with a goal and it’s inspiring to see one person do well, so that fortune just passes along.
EL: Even this interview right now is an expression of that. I think hard working individuals, like you, deserve to have their story be told so that hopefully it will inspire others. It just creates a better place for everybody.
Daniel: This is the first time I’ve ever done something in the workplace where they’ve actually honored me and my story. Like you said, that goes a long way and could motivate other people to go out and say, “Hey, he made it from one place to another so I can too.”
EL: Well-deserved for sure. How does the 2020 theme ‘Future in Focus’ match your own passions?
Daniel: I started the year off focused on my five-year and ten-year plan. EL’s goal this year is a catalyst for the years to come to be successful. So with that mindset, I decided that 2020 would be a year to make plans for my own positive future.
EL: And how’s that working out so far?
Daniel: It’s going well. It’s baby steps. It’s things that I want to do individually. I’ve already got promoted from account manager 1 to account manager 2, and that was a big step for career growth process. Still trying to get to account manager 3 and senior account manager, so baby steps, but I’m getting there.
EL: You’re definitely on track. You spoke a little bit earlier to how much Greg has been an awesome example and coach for you, do you have a favorite coaching moment in particular?
Daniel: One moment in particular? I mean, there are several of them. I’m the type of person where, I like knowing that I am doing well, but I really like to know how I can do better. There was one time I was going over my carriers, and Greg [noticed] that I had a large company, a huge company that was supposed to do well for me. My projection was that they were going to provide modest results, but Greg disagreed with settling for modest results. [Sometimes] you come into a job you’re thinking, “I’m doing the job, and that’s what I’m supposed to do because I get paid to do it.” But at the end of the day, the job contributes a lot to your success, and our jobs contribute a lot to the success of [other] people in logistics and all the drivers. That coaching moment helped me realize that relationship between us as account managers and trucking companies, and how we really benefit them. Our job is a lot more of just sitting at a desk and making calls. I think that was important to me.
EL: Powerful perspective that you’ve offered there. Sometimes those coaching moments, at first might make you flinch but ultimately, they can be huge, huge growth opportunities. This one sounds like it made a difference for you.
Daniel: Especially in my life as an account manager.
EL: What do you feel like, in your case, was the greatest challenge to your success, and what did you do about it? Even in this interview I’ve gathered that you are a very responsive individual.
Daniel: At this job the process is you work with a company, and you work hard to get them on your side, and you work hard to sell them on the product, and then you actually sell them. [It can be] out of your control, whether or not you can make the in-between, that challenge of actually getting approved or denied. While dealing with that process, and while dealing with bouncing back after denials was one of my greatest challenges.
“How have I overcome that? By keeping my foot on the pedal.”
Not thinking about the denials, hearing stories about how a friend had a record number of denials in one month, but he still came to the position he’s in. Hearing success stories like that and going off of those stories helped me overcome, no matter how many times I’ve gotten denied, and no matter how many times I’ve gotten put down.
EL: Very wise words. I think success comes to those that recognize that those failures are part of the process, necessary even. Do you have a favorite lunch spot or a favorite restaurant?
Daniel: I do like a Jamaican spot here in Atlanta, it’s called Fireside. That’s one of my favorite spots. I like Fireside and I like Chipotle.
EL: Chipotle is my favorite! It’s the good stuff.
Daniel: Sounds like we need to sit down outside of this interview for a burrito.
EL: Just a heads up that I need to usually get it double-wrapped though for its size. You do what you got to do. What’s your favorite EL corporate event and why? Of all the events that EL provides, is there one you enjoyed?
Daniel: The Elite Club. I got to go to Top Golf twice. That was a ton of fun! I felt like meeting Jason and talking to Ryan personally, I’ve never had that experience before. To meet people at that level of success, and then they show their humility to me over a round of golf, I think that was one of my favorite corporate events for sure.
EL: It’s funny that you say that, because I remember having a conversation with Jason about that! He talked about his experience in Atlanta and going to some of the Top Golf and the Elite Club events, and he spoke of your team’s humility, and who how impressed he was that you guys were doing everything you could. It seemed like the camaraderie was just this grateful kind of attitude. And so it goes both ways, and I think that there’s some success to be spoken in that, that you all feel the same way. What do you personally do for fun outside of work, your hobbies?
Daniel: These days with quarantine going on, I play a bit of basketball, working out, hanging with friends, social events, that’s about it. I’m pretty boring these days since I have a newborn son.
EL: No way! How old?
Daniel: 9 months.
EL: You are kidding! Congratulations! That’s beautiful. I’m sure that takes up a bit of your time now huh?
Daniel: [Deep breath]. 99.9%.
EL: I can imagine! Well, I think raising a son is a good hobby.
Daniel: It’s one of my greatest joys for sure.
EL: I believe it. Do you have any funniest memories during your time at EL, something that you remember that makes you chuckle?
Daniel: There was one that was really funny. For Christmas, the team decided that we would all go get a Christmas sweater, and we had to take a group picture. So, for some reason, me and my two co-workers, Tremendous and TJ had on the same sweater!
EL: What? The exact same one?
Daniel: Out of the ten or so that Walmart had, we all had the same one. It was hilarious!
EL: [Laughing] That’s way funny.
Daniel: It’s even funnier because we came into the job together so we’ve always been very close, it was just a crazy coincidence.
EL: You guys must be operating on the same wavelength. What was on the sweater?
Daniel: I think a dinosaur? Holding some gifts?
EL: And that’s what you all independently picked out?
Daniel: We had a good laugh about that for sure.
EL: That’s great. What is the best advice you’ve been given while at EL?
Daniel: I’ve been given a lot of good advice. Some good advice that has stuck with me was actually from Jason. Jason, Ryan, and other executives came down to the office and opened up the floor for questions to see what everybody was feeling. At the time, I was trying to balance fuel and another department, and I hadn’t even promoted in fuel all the way yet. Jason basically said, “Try and focus on one area at a time. A lot of people become great or proficient because they master that one area.” I never felt like he was saying not to give focus to the other area or don’t do something you aspire to do, but just try to become great at one thing, and master [it]. And I just think that’s a life tip even more so than for EL,
“Become a master of your own fate and whatever thing you are trying to become.”
That’s what I’ve been trying to do. Trying to learn fuel’s in and outs and put my best foot forward. I think that was the good advice.
EL: It goes a long way to invest in where you’re at. There’s nothing more powerful than focus and investing in one particular skill set. Well said. Winding down here, do you have a favorite song or band you listen to at work? Where’s your taste at?
Daniel: I go old-school sometimes, especially in the morning. “They Don’t Know” by John B is my song, one of the smoothest songs in history.
EL: It sounds like I need to look that one up personally myself and add to my playlist. Motivational?
Daniel: Kinda? It’s a love song! [Laughing] It’s smooth. Just good vibes. Sometimes I just need that smooth song to get the day started.
EL: I’m sold. I’ll hit that one up. Last question I have for you, what advice would you give to individuals after you or to those you coach?
Daniel: Don’t give up. That’s what comes to mind. The goal is to hit senior account manager of course, and whatever leadership positions become available after that. But I got to a point when, around Christmas time, but I had already set a goal for myself to hit account manager 2 by October, and if I didn’t then I was going to for sure hit it in November. I did the pipeline plan, I knew I was going to hit it, but then everybody eats turkey and relaxes during those times, so everybody started to take off. Last year I started into March, so I hadn’t seen that drastic decline before that, so I wasn’t expecting it! I was expecting things to go great. And after Christmas I was like, “Man, this is rough.” I didn’t fall short, everything I had to have I had in place, even after the denials and hard times I still did what I needed, but then, here comes another turn of events I can’t control again. So in February I came back after the break, and I got promoted on a month that actually ends two days early. Things will come when you least expect it, so just don’t give up on what you believe in and what you are aspiring to do. At the end of the day, if you lay that foundation and you believe in yourself, then your goals will come to pass.
EL: It’s persistence. And persistence is coming to EL, knocking on the door, and ripping it up ever since.
We’re on the search for more Daniels. If this interview resonated with you, apply at this link: https://www.englandlogistics.com/search-all-available-jobs/