On this week’s episode of Taking the Hire Road, DriverReach founder and CEO Jeremy Reymer welcomed Jim Ward, president and CEO of D.M. Bowman and chairman of the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA).
With experience on both the vendor and carrier side, Ward’s well-rounded trucking perspective propelled him through the ranks of the TCA, serving as an officer for eight years before taking the reins as the association’s 90th chairman in April, a position he’ll serve in for a year.
“[TCA] is really here to continue to work with our membership to provide opportunities to improve profitability, productivity and, where necessary, advocacy on Capitol Hill for the truckload segment of the industry,” Ward said. “But from my perspective, the real value of the association has always been its networking opportunities and the people that you get to know and rub shoulders with.”
Ward spoke of the privilege he feels having the ability to converse with colleagues anytime he’s met with complex issues, of which the industry is scattered with. “It’s invaluable; it’s truly a takeaway from being a member of this association,” he said.
In addition to its camaraderie, TCA members also have the benefit of participating in a variety of educational activities available for drivers, C-suite executives and everyone in between.
One of the programs that Ward touched on is the Truckload Academy, a collection of training modules, certificate programs, webinars and workshops to help develop a safer, smarter and more profitable industry. The TCA Profitability Program (TPP) was also discussed, a premier performance improvement solution for the trucking industry. TCA’s multitiered system gives carriers the flexibility to choose how much time and resources they want to dedicate to the program.
“We’ve continued to align ourselves with these things to strengthen our educational value proposition to our association members to help them get better at the business that they’re in,” Ward said. “[TCA] continues to work on and improve the image of our industry, which coming off COVID-19, this is the best opportunity I’ve seen in the 30 years I have been in this business.”
TCA is perhaps most known for its advocacy. Ward hopes to strengthen its political might this year when necessary and to continue keeping members informed.
“All we ask for is a seat at the table,” Ward said of TCA’s advocacy on Capitol Hill. “And so again, we’re trying to provide continuity. When I hand the baton off next year to John Elliott, it will be the same thing.”
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