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A driver builds up his own trucking business

By on July 1, 2015

Ricky Cole • Cartersville, Georgia • Driving for 27 years

I started working in my dad’s salvage yard as a kid. The day I got my driver’s license, I went to Atlanta to deliver parts and pick up wrecked cars. It was just the beginning of a remarkable journey in the transportation industry.

I spent six years working in the asphalt paving business working for my grandfather before deciding to strike out on my own. He wanted me to learn different aspects of the industry, so I worked as a lowboy driver, estimator, trucking manager and project manager during that time. One thing I remember most is that he treated everybody the same no matter who they were.

I started Taylor Transport Inc. 20 years ago. It’s named after my grandfather, Glenn Taylor, and we started with just a Mack tractor, a dump trailer and a Mack dump truck. We now have more than 100 tractors, 150 trailers and 120 employees.

No two days are the same in this business. I could be meeting with a client, filling out paperwork or driving a truck. If our drivers have an issue, I want to be part of the solution. My door is always open so that I can answer any questions — as long as I’m not on the phone!

Our company is a team effort. We hire drivers who genuinely care about our customers and treat them in a courteous manner. Calling on my own experience as a driver, I remind them to arrive prepared and on time so that our suppliers are given the best service. Every link in the chain is important.

When the construction industry experienced a downturn in 2008, we went into survival mode. Given the impact on local and regional business, we put more of an emphasis on our long-haul services. We operate in all 48 states and our drivers are essential to keep many industries going forward.

The most important thing that I would tell people who are considering a career in the trucking industry is to enjoy what you do. You’re not likely to become rich or famous — but you can make a comfortable living. If you follow your passion, the rewards can be tremendous.

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