If you are a large or small company looking for services in the transportation industry, American Veterans Trucking is who you are looking for. This transportation company focuses on the timely transportation of raw material and goods throughout Eastern Massachusetts. Based out of Plymouth, Massachusetts, this disabled veteran owned company has been in business since 2016. It has built a reputation that consists of great customer service, timely delivery of goods and employee job satisfaction.
The owner of American Veterans Trucking, Thomas Latham, is a disabled veteran who decided that he wouldn’t let his disability get in the way of his dream of becoming self-employed. Thomas is self-driven and expects the best of himself, his employees and his equipment. I had a moment to sit down with Tom to ask him what makes his company stand out amongst others like his.
Q. Why did you choose this line of business?
A. While attending college, following my injury in the US Army, I was familiar with heavy equipment from jobs I held previously. I decided to take what I leaned from college and purse a career in what I knew best (trucking).
Q. If you had to start over from day one, what would you have done differently? What was your most difficult challenge?
A. I would have reminded myself to start off a bit slower. I found that I would never refuse jobs which led me to grow the business at a rate that I became uncomfortable with. With the support from my wife, I was able to keep the pace of growth at a manageable level. “Things are good now.”
Q. If a customer was to choose between your business and three others just like it why would you suggest they at least give you a try ﬁrst? What makes you stand out?
A. I pride myself on great customer service! I instill in my employees that they represent the business and hold a stake in our success. With a great team and a good work ethic, my business has built a great reputation for safe and timely service which is critical in our industry.
Q. What is the number one way you currently bring in new customers?
A. Reputation. Mainly, we work with trucking brokers that provide the specifications of the job. This determines where my trucks are needed and for how long. We also cater to the smaller trucking jobs that are local to this area. I have smaller trucks to support these jobs.
Q. Has internet technology (website, online ads, social media, etc.) played a big part in your growth and making your company more successful?
A. We have very limited exposure on social media. Most of our work comes from business to business (cross talk). Again, our reputation sells itself. Companies that do business with us know that we are reliable and we price our work fairly.
Q. If you had to look six months to a year into the future where would you like to see your business be?
A. I’m in the process of completing the necessary documentation to do work for the US Government. As a disabled veteran owned company, the government gives priority of awarding contracts to veteran owned companies.
Q. As a veteran and former Non-Commissioned Officer in the US Army, how would you explain your leadership qualities?
A. The Army gave me the ability to multitask and lead people. College gave me the ability to understand the financial aspects of running a business. I’m a very hands-on owner, my employees see me every day. I will jump in a truck and do whatever they are doing. I will put a suit on and give a presentation to a potential client. My way of looking at things is that you must know all aspects of the company in order for it to be successful.