E7: State of the Industry Podcast, with John Elliott - Thoughts from the Immediate Past Chairman

By: Brandon Baxter - Staff Writer
Posted: Mar 30th 2023

We're six episodes deep into the "State of the Industry Podcast, with John Elliott" and the seventh installment has already been spruced up and distributed like a good Spring-cleaning, effort as we March onward into the 2023 calendar. So, lay that feather duster down and prepare for the next episode!

Hopefully, there are many of you who have been regularly tuning in and making this podcast part of your listening, or viewing, routine. If not, why?! Obviously, John and I want you to listen to or watch this monthly podcast, which you can quickly get your fix by clicking below. ??


Brandon Baxter: Welcome to the State of the Industry podcast with John Elliott. I'm your host Brandon Baxter. And as you know, this is a monthly series. It's dedicated to discussions pertaining to the trucking industry and it features commentary by the CEO of Load One and recent TCA Chairman, John Elliott. John, did I say that right?

John Elliott: Yes, you did.

BB: Very good.

JE: I just wrapped up about a week ago. So I'm now the immediate past chairman.

BB: The immediate past chairman, JE. John, thank you so much for joining me, man. How you doing?

JE: Good. My business card just got a little longer. You have to fold it over and get all that on. All good.

BB: We put them on postcards now, right?

JE: Yep. That's fair.

BB: Well, as you just alluded to the, your time as TCA Chairman has officially concluded. So let's kind of debrief on that. How did you feel everything went? Let's talk about the year that was, and obviously it just kind of culminated down in, I think it was Kissimmee, Florida, right?

JE: Yep. Kissimmee, Florida, right outside Orlando. We just came off our annual convention. It was one for the record books as far as attendance, membership. It was a ball-buster from beginning to end and, really, it was just a great event. The show floor was sold out months in advance. Like I said, attendance was phenomenal. Second highest we've ever had, the largest one we've ever had outside of Las Vegas. And we almost beat Las Vegas. And let's be honest, it's hard to beat Vegas for any conference because it just tends to get 10, 20% more attendance because people just want to go to Vegas.

But really, we had great panels. We had an industry leader panel. You had the leadership of Heartland Express, Werner Trucking, Dave Jackson from Knight-Swift was one of the panelists.

BB: That's a big one going on right there right now, right?

JE: Obviously recently on the news. As we all know, the acquisition of U.S. Xpress this week.

BB: That's big.

JE: So a lot going on. And it ended with a really great gala banquet. Finished up the whole shebang with a really great concert and that by Blues Traveler.

BB: How can you be, I mean for those of us who came from the nineties, Blues Traveler was one of the top at some point. But that's great. That's fantastic. And it was at the Gaylord, right? If I'm not mistaken.

JE: Yeah. Yes. The Gaylord Palms in Kissimmee.

BB: Ooh, beautiful.

JE: Excellent. Yeah, beautiful facility and that they took great care of us as they always do. Like I said, just a really good time. Lot of good people. Just a lot of networking, just the value, the ROI that people were able to bring back. It was a little exciting because the energy level was really high and I was a little concerned, Brandon, with the economy, especially the last few weeks, it's got a little more scary. The trucking industry is taking a little bit of a murky turn over the last few months with freight volumes dropping and that. So I wasn't sure what the energy was going to be and it was still extremely high, extremely positive. I think people are seeing a longer view of this and thinking that this is more of just a short term storm.

BB: Now to backtrack just a little bit, by the way, nice mug.

JE: You talking about this one or this one?

BB: Yeah, that one too. We're coordinating nowadays. But backtracking just a little bit, talking about the year that was with TCA. If you don't mind just kind of go into your overall experience, how you felt it went, what you got out of it, what you feel the organization got out of you.

JE: I think it was really, if you look at the lifespan of being an officer, it was like seven years to become chairman.

BB: Wow.

JE: And it feels like that was a lifetime. But then when you took that seat, that year went by in the blink of an eye and that. But I was a very interesting year with COVID, the economy going up and down, interest rates, business going from an all-time high to slowing dramatically down. There was just a lot of factors in play. But I came out of it with a really good feeling. I feel as an organization, we really moved forward this year, both internally in the organization and externally. The amount of time we got to spend up on Capitol Hill with our lawmakers and with our policymakers. I met with Robin Hutcheson, the head of the FMCSA.

She was down at TCA at her annual conference. We got to sit down with her and introduce her to the Drivers of the Year Award winners. Got some time for her to be able to spend with them and understand their issues and what they loved about driving, what were their challenges out there so that she could hear it firsthand from them.

But working with FMCSA and DOT on policies and trying to help educate and guide. Because a lot of it is, you call it lobbying, but a lot of it isn't that you need to lobby so much as these people need perspective. They need to understand the views, they need to understand it's a little bit of education and giving them facts and data to be able to go forward with. And I really think TCA is helping to drive that and do that.

Things like truck parking. Pretty exciting. We've got that. My fingers crossed, moving forward again through some appropriation. So we're going to see what happens there. But I think that one may get across the finish line here shortly. So I take a lot of pride because that was a priority under my tenure and the organization as a whole.

We joined some other organizations to help fight this independent contractor battle. This AB 5 and independent contractor thing is bad. It's very bad. Most every trucking company I know started with one truck and one driver. That's how my grandfather, I'm a third generation, he came out of the coal mine, he became a driver, got his first truck and that started. Now I watch my daughter or family members below me going go into the business, that's a fourth generation and all that started off, really, the independent contractor. And to turn around and attack that, to me, that's a fundamental basic of the American dream. So government needs to stay out of that and let that be.

BB: But what's the latest with that, if you don't mind me jumping in for a second, John, what can you share? Or do you know what's kind of a-

JE: That's a back and forth. We're fighting in California, that's gone back and forth. Some other states have bubbled up. I think a lot of them are really waiting to see what happens in California. It's a lot like Rhode Island when they tried to do truck only tolls. Eight or nine states had plans on the table waiting to see what happened with the Rhode Island Supreme Court and in trucking, we won that, the ATA and TCA won that fight during my year, or the accumulation of the win. So those other states backed off.

And it's the same thing with AB 5 or independent contractor status. Department of Labor has gone back and forth. The Biden administration's tried to put some rules back in. We'll see how that plays out. I think it's a lot more devastating than they realize, especially in an economy that's incredibly fragile.

BB: Oh, yeah.

JE: Even right now, it is even more so not the time to be messing with things. But again, that that's a fundamental building block of the economy that shouldn't be touched. And it's solely for political reasons. You've got that.

The other big thing I think we're looking at right now are looming issue is emission standards. Vehicles are federally regulated and that's the way it should be. You can't have every individual state come up with their own emission regulations, or how would Ford or Freightliner, Detroit Diesel or Cummins or Caterpillar, anyone be able to produce a vehicle?

BB: Wouldn't be able to, wouldn't be possible.

JE: You had to comply to 50 different standards. And that's why we have a federal environmental regulation department, the EPA. The EPA is somehow, and the federal government, is seated power to California, and that in CARB. And California is moving forward with standards and that. And they're not very good rules. And on top of the questionability of rules is the timeframe that they're putting on those rules.

So TCA is a founding member along with the ATA, the Engine Manufacturing Association and the Automotive Truck Dealers Association to Clean Freight Coalition. And we're going to work together as a unified voice to help educate lawmakers on the situation and in the public and understand. I think it's 60 trucks today put out the emissions that one truck did in 1988. As an industry, we have-

BB: Progress has been made.

JE: We've made huge progress in that and we're committed to keep going forward. We're not saying no, but what we're saying is there has to be a realistic timeframe. You can't do it in four years, five years. The technology is not there. We would have another time like back in, what was it, 2012 or 2013 when we brought DEF in and some other solutions.

It was not good for the industry. We had a big pre-buy surge and then the new technology came in and, like a lot of new technologies, some did not work at all. Cummins had their issues and different engine manufacturers, certain technologies did not play out. Even the ones that did eventually stay and work had a lot of problems. They had a lot of bugs to work out. It added a lot of cost to the equipment. It hurt the reliability of the equipment, terrible resale in that equipment. So it wasn't good for the companies, it wasn't good for owner-operators and in the end, it wasn't good for supply chain because of the unreliability of the equipment.

And then, like I said, you're hurting resale value, you're hurting uptime. If trucks are down, you need more trucks. Supply chain isn't good.

I think the point is, we're behind the idea to continue to improve and continue to help the environment, but we have to do on a logical timeframe. And trucks are, you can't just plug them in tomorrow. There's not a battery solution for them. We're going to have to find some logical bridges, whether it be hydrogen or other solutions to get us across the finish line. But you can't just say we're going to out outlaw the combustion engine in four years arbitrarily when you don't have a replacement. So that's where we go back to there.

Again, it's been some challenges. There's been some wins for the industry and the organization. We know one of the other positive things that we're really looking forward to is, a lot of people are familiar with NATMI. NATMI does the certifications in our industry, like your certified safety professionals and things like that. That is actually a wholly owned sister company of TCA. And you're going to see a lot more things come out over this next year as we look to expand certification and training and education for our industry, and bring more value to both NATMI members and the TCA members. So we're pretty excited about that among a lot of other things.

BB: That's huge. You've said it now a couple of times, just the word "education", whether it was discussing the parking situation, the truck parking situation, and having the opportunity to educate those who, they don't step foot into the trucking world necessarily. So having that opportunity to increase the education of those individuals, it sounds like you're headed in the right direction, it just may take a little time, right?

JE: Yeah, for sure. And we lobby too and ATA lobbies a lot. But again, I think the first step is really education. Lobbying is a little bit of a push. Ideally, I think if we can educate policymakers and lawmakers and that with good solid facts and have them understand the facts, not just the hype. It's easy to talk about the hype and what's great on the news and what sounds great on a PowerPoint. But when you talk about the realities of it and the real impacts and how it's going to affect drivers or the industry, the whole supply chain and ultimately consumers and that, well that's what they need to know and that's what they want to hear.

And a lot of times you don't have to lobby or push. They're going to make logical decisions because they have the facts. And a lot of times they just got hit from the other side, let's say an environmental group or things like that, who have one goal, one objective, and don't care about the ramifications at the end of the day. They don't care what happens to supply chain, they don't care what happens to the consumer or what the costs of certain things are. They have a goal, they want their goal, they push for their goal. And that's it.

Again, we're not essentially opposed to the goal, but it's got to be a realistic goal. It's got to be a realistic timeframe. It has to be something that can be done.

BB: It has to make sense. You mentioned something else, talking about the supply chain and we were talking before we really got started here today about the current expedite freight market. What's been going on there? Suffice to say, it's kind of up and down at the best. Elaborate if you could.

JE: We went from a very hot market for the last two, three years. The nicest term I could use is a normalization, but I think this is more than a normalization.

We've seen a pretty, across the industry, talking to people and looking at other companies and carriers, they've seen some pretty dramatic, not only declines in load counts, but even more so than that is the revenue per mile or the revenue and the rates have just plummeted. And it's not just expedite. You're seeing it, ocean containers, air freights, air charter, across the board. Freight has just taking a pretty dramatic swing here at the end of the fourth quarter in that. And I wish I had all the answers.

I do think part of it is a normalization. I think we're going back to pre-COVID where first quarter was the lowest, second quarter was better, third quarter was better yet. And then fourth was the best quarter of the year. And I think that's what we're starting to see as supply chain kind of smooths out.

Inventory from overseas is a little bit more regular now and things like that. You have people aren't ordering stuff a year in advance hoping to get something. So I think we're seeing some of that. I think we're seeing some inventory adjustments. People are getting rid of stuff they don't need, they ordered anything they could get, not knowing what they were going to have to sell on their shelves.

BB: And then not needing it.

JE: And then I think the other big factor is, the stock market and with the Feds continuing to raise interest rates, trying to coal inflation and pull it back. Well, those interest rates are stymying companies. It's not good for any business. So I think it's hurting a lot of businesses. I think a lot of businesses are pulling back, a lot of businesses are struggling with combining inflation costs with the interest rate hikes.

And that, just today we got another quarter point, possibly the last one, they say maybe one more this year. But again, this is the largest swing we've seen I think in roughly 15, 16 years of the Fed.

It's a dramatic expense to a lot of carriers. That moves your borrowing expense dramatically. You have the carrying costs of carrying receivables and fuel receivables and your owner operators, you're paying them every week. You're not getting paid for 30, 60, 90 days sometimes.

If everyone was doing the same business they were doing last year, a carrier does let's say 10 million in sales. Their interest carry costs maybe $50,000 more this year.

BB: Really?

JE: It's real. It's a real number. Maybe closer to a hundred. It adds up and it's direct off the bottom line. It's money that's not spent on buying new equipment or employees or benefits or wages or any of that. It's just a direct mystery money that goes out to pay for interest.

BB: Well, something that you also just kind of mentioned, and let's jump back into that for a second because, I know we've talked about it in the past, but are you seeing anything, and I actually do want to come back to something else you just said, so I don't want to lose that spot, but are you seeing any moving forward in terms of equipment being purchased? As an industry, are we still in a holding pattern in terms of truck orders and stuff like that? Because I know that companies I've talked with over the last year have said there's just nothing that they can do at the moment.

JE: The pipeline is still quite a bit out there. Trailers seem to have gotten a little better. You don't have to wait quite as long on trailers. Trucks are still, you want a new truck, it's nine months to a year if you can get it. So that's out there, I think. And honestly you got to be a fleet to really get a spot. Be an owner operator and say, "I want to go buy a truck." That's hard. You're not going to get to order one, most likely. Most likely, if you have any luck, you're going to get one off the lot.

And honestly, dealers are not, they don't have much inventory on lots, especially brand new because if they've got a slot, it's going to one of their fleet customers who's committed.

A lot of us place orders and, honestly, we're seeing, we're a decent sized customer. The big truck manufacturers are my customers. So we have a very strong relationship. I'm go going to get probably half of my allocation for trucks that I've ordered and want this year. So it's challenging.

Now, that's probably a good thing in one hand because it's not letting supply over expand. Which would be very detrimental right now.

BB: Sure, that makes sense.

JE: It's about expand situation. A lot of carriers are suffering hard. I think especially in expedite, I think one of the biggest struggles that we're seeing, talking to a lot of carriers, and a lot of carriers do a lot of business for us, we're a large broker in the expedite business. A lot of them jumped in or grew over the last two, three years when the spot market, when they could live off bid boards and brokers would pay anything, those days are over. When it shifts the other way, those bid boards or brokers that would pay the high rate, guess what? Now they're the ones at the lowest end of the spectrum.

BB: They've got no place to go.

JE: Supply and demand. They're paying the lowest of everything. I struggle even sometimes with my fleet, reminding them, "Hey guys, we have a high percentage of direct shipper freight. And yes, does it pay as well, let's say six months ago, did it pay as well as crazy spot market rates? No. But when things slow down, that freight's there and that freight's more steady and dedicated." And that's what most carriers really don't have a lot of that, that kind of freight in their mix. They're probably only the, I'll say a handful of the larger ones have the sales force and have the investment into the direct ship or market.

I think you're going to see, I think owner-operators migrate to some of the larger carriers if this downturn holds.

But honestly, my gut, if I was a betting man, says this is a 90 days more and we should be moving through this from the expedite industry. Trucking's a lead indicator, I think the end of the third quarter and the fourth quarter will be decent in trucking as a whole. Expedite tends to move before the general truckload market.

BB: Kind of sets the trend.

JE: And I think companies like ours that have a heavier mix of dedicated or dedicated customers direct ship or freight are going, will move before that because we're not as reliant on the spot market as other carriers, who 90% of their freight runs through that spot market.

There's challenges. I tell my fleet all the time, "You got to play the long game." You can make more money tomorrow on this load or yesterday and this or that. But what you got to look at a week, a month, a year. We've been in business 20 years now. So I've been through the ups and downs of this market numerous times and you got to play the long game. You got to think smart. You got to play the long game and you got to make sure, as an owner-operator or driver, you're positioned with a company that has the freight mix to play the long game. One has the financial stability to play the long game because things came rough and that you're seeing carriers close. There was just 150 truck area the other day in North Carolina. Good company. I was at a conference they presented, a week later, surprise, they closed their doors. So it's very interesting times.

Like I said, interest rates going up only are going to exasperate that problem. And it raises the costs again of everything. Insurance, everything that keeps going up. Overpriced equipment, I mean that they're upside down and loans are now because they used equipment with the market slowing down, you see people dumping equipment off. Dealers are not looking for a lot of used equipment right now. It's not moving the way it was.

I think a lot of companies that were not very well playing for the long term and were living off the short term that somehow thought those rates would stay there forever and the golden days were going to be a decade, are going to unfortunately suffer really bad if they make it.

BB: And so much of this was, for lack of an argument, predicated on what happened with COVID, correct? That's really where we started to see a lot of this come into play.

JE: It definitely, it changed the supply demand curve dramatically. It threw the supply chain into chaos. The expedited ministry, we do well in chaos, whether it be natural disasters, storms, COVID. I didn't think pandemic, years ago, was really high on my list of possibles.

BB: I don't know that it was on anyone's bingo card.

JE: We used looked at natural disasters, things like Katrina and things like that really moved and affected our market. Pandemic was really not on my list. So I guess, you know what, if aliens land tomorrow, I'll be like, "Oh, should have saw that coming." Nothing really seems completely out of the realm of the expedite world anymore.

BB: Not anymore. I guess we should also put on that list, keep an eye out for any asteroids that may be heading this way. That's something to be aware of, I guess.

Pivoting, John, pivoting over to your company to Load One. Obviously, you guys have been able to maintain and even progress and grow throughout this period that we're talking about. Tell us what's going on right now. What's the latest with Load One?

JE: Couple of things recently, we invested heavy in place our betting in technology. We really try to digitally transform the company and to be the leader in the time of critical space. And I think we've, knock on wood, I think we've done it or we're the leader, some may argue that, but I'll argue it back.

But a couple recent things. Our driver app has been a big thing for a couple of years now and we continue to enhance that. We recently brought out a version for our fleet owners so that they could see the data on their trucks and watch what their fleet was doing all real time from a phone.

BB: They have to love that.

JE: I can't imagine trying to take it away from them. They'd be like a child taking a Christmas toy. Enthusiastic would be an understatement.

BB: Awesome.

JE: So that's been a great tool. And again, you're giving people data and you're giving people actionable data to manage their businesses. And really that's been the goal for us is to empower our owner-operators and our drivers and our fleet owners to manage their businesses more effectively, have realtime data, and for that to be an advantage over our competitors that don't provide data. I have a competitor I know provides a heat map of freight. "Here's last month's heat map." Ours is real time, it's live. It's yesterday, today. You sort it, dice it, slice it. What happened last month is not really relevant to me. And it shouldn't be anyone in this industry at this point in the world and technology.

BB: But if you've got data to go off of, you've got some sort of numbers that can help you.

JE: You can manage, good or bad. And you know what, sometimes managing through a storm that data's even more important.

BB: Absolutely.

JE: And on top of that, we do a lot, like I said, we broker a lot. We work with a lot of partner carriers, an expedite, very large customer [inaudible 00:27:04]. We just launched earlier this week our own proprietary load board.

BB: Really?

JE: So far the reviews have been three thumbs up from our carriers with some of the features and the accessibility and the ease of use. And again, our goal is to be able to take care of our customers, provide coverage faster, if we're not able to do it, we have one of the two largest expedite fleets in the country at this point. And if we're not able to handle an in-house, we need to protect that freight and cover it for our customer. So that way it's always there for our fleet.

We always move. Some companies optimize their freight and they will choose whether to put it on their truck or to broker it. What is the most advantageous for the carrier. We do not. Our freight goes to the fleet first and it gets outsourced second. We do that to protect our fleet, our fleet should be first. They've got our name on the side of the vehicles and their livelihood and that should be directly tied to ours. Unlike some carriers who, everyone's got heir own business model.

BB: No, I understand, but it's true it exists.

JE: If optimizing is more profitable for them, I can understand that from a business sense. Choosing that, that's not the route Load One will go.

BB: Right. You provide a better atmosphere in that case for the owner-operator, for the fleet driver. Going back to your new load board there, is this something that drivers have access to where they can look at loads that are available or is this the fleet owners have access to? How does that work, if you don't mind me asking.

JE: This is for other carriers. Our driver app, our drivers see automatic load offers to them with all the data. So they have something like that on their app already, which feeds them based on their radius, matches them with a vehicle size and the stats, and provides them with load offers.

This is really for outside carriers. We are working some experimental things with some of the outside carriers to provide down to their drivers, load opportunities from us and that to integrate that so we can even speed that process up even further. That's in Beta test, so we don't talk a lot about that yet.

BB: Okay. We'll worry about that one on the next episode. And speaking of next episode and what's coming next, we got truck show season upon us. At this time that we're recording, next week we're going to be in Louisville, Kentucky for the Mid-America Trucking Show. Talk a little bit about what you're looking forward to this year.

JE: Truck shows. How can you not look forward to those. A lot of history at those things.

BB: Ain't that the truth?

JE: Yeah, so many. We're headed to Mid-America this year. We'll have a big old straight truck in our booth. We have the same spot we traditionally have. So if anyone in the industry is down there, you probably know where we're at in the corner.

BB: Know where to find you.

JE: I can't remember what wing that is, I think it's the west wing-

BB: I believe so.

JE: ... is where we're all at. I'd love to have everyone stop by the booth, take a look. We're going to have some of our technology on display so drivers, owner-operators can see what that app looks like and what that, we can talk about it all day and but when you see it, and we've got a giant 50-inch iPhone simulator or whatever so that you can actually see it firsthand. It's pretty amazing stuff.

A lot of people there. Operations people too, not just recruiters. Recruiters are great but I think it's always good to talk.

BB: I know a few.

JE: But I think it's powerful to talk to operations people and be able to do one on one that really understand it. And one thing about our booth, it's always got a lot of our drivers and owners there, which is great. They like to the see each other in that. And I tell anyone, if they're looking to come on board with us, I'm happy to point them out to them and say, "Hey, why don't you go ask them your questions?" Forget a recruiter, forget operations, go ask another driver. They're going to give it to you from their view. They do it for a living and they'll have the best perspective of it all.

And that's what you'll fine. You find our drivers are over by the giant iPhone showing it off and showing it how it works. They also like to brag. Sometimes they're like, "We don't want more trucks," because they think that that's going to be bad. They always have that fear, but it's not exactly how it works. But the more trucks lets us go to more customers and that gives more freight diversity. And the more loads, the more trucks you have, that's more combinations that reduces empty miles. There's a lot of pluses for it.

So we're excited about that. And then from there we move on to the big old expo of them all, the Expedite Expo.

BB: The big old expo, I've heard of that one a few times.

JE: Yes. In beautiful Fort Wayne, Indiana.

BB: Tell everybody what is so special about it this year, John.

JE: This year we're having the driver's barbecue on the front end sponsored by Load One. I don't have that good dust-

BB: Brought to you by Load One.

JE: ... old Jackson voice or something to be like, have that cool deep voice with it. We're happy to sponsor that this year, supposed to be, we're looking to make it a bigger event. Have more drivers there, more activities, make it a lot more fun. Really nice way to kick off the event and everything. Because it seems like more people are there at the beginning by the end of it, a lot of times people got to go, especially if they're other loads are stopping in.

BB: So why not kick it off big, right?

JE: Exactly. Go big or go home.

BB: That's right. And honestly, I've talked with a lot of drivers in recent weeks and they're already getting jacked up and excited for the Expedite Expo. And coupled this year with the Crossroads of America Trucking show, we're kind of doing a two in one type thing and it's exciting. This time of year, speaking from a recruiter's perspective, I had always enjoyed whether it was MATS or GATS or even back in the day, because you mentioned early on in our program here, the old Las Vegas truck show. So any one of those, it was always interesting to be a part of.

JE: I remember my first Expedited Expo at Woodhaven, Michigan in the parking lot, at Detroiter truck stop.

BB: That's right. Going way back.

JE: We sponsored Joey Holiday as we entered the expedite industry.

BB: I remember Joey Holiday.

JE: Yeah, I do. So I don't think that guy's still around, but Joey's got to be getting up there. I know I am.

BB: Aren't we all? Time stops for no one, my friend.

JE: Exactly. We're looking forward to it. I'm also, last couple years I've spoke on the industry panel, so I'll be doing that again this year down at the Expo. And so looking forward to it. Looking forward to seeing everybody, and knock on wood, I guess our recruiting phones and that have been really pretty busy. So I think hopefully we'll make a lot more new friends when we're down there.

BB: I can dig it. That's part of why I've always enjoyed being there. You mentioned it at the top of our episode here, just the ROI on simple networking is huge. So having the opportunity to get all of us together, whether it's MATS, whether it's the Expedite Expo, and getting an opportunity to just chew the fat is always a good thing for everybody.

JE: Oh, yeah. And the Expedite Expo is really, being so focused on Expedite, the relations you build and the interactions and things there over the years just been really great.

BB: I've said it before, this is such a close-knit industry. Everybody knows everybody.

JE: We learn a lot. And a high percent of us work together. I call it the frenemies. Nobody wants to have to use your competition. But that's the realistic part of how our industry is based and everything.

BB: Couldn't agree more.

JE: Being able to get everyone together and see each other and talk and sometimes grab a beer or something. You can get a lot done.

BB: Absolutely. Couldn't agree more. So for those watching and listening, we can't wait to see you at the expo. But before that, we do hope that we'll be able to press the flesh down there in Louisville here starting next week. John, anything else you'd like to add to our conversation before we wrap it up this time around?

JE: No, not really. I would say stay safe everyone out there. Like I said, I know it's a little bit of a challenging time for a lot of people, but it's not just expedite, it's all across the industry. I do believe it's a 60, 90 day kind of problem. It is not the end of the world. And freight is still going to move. Truck tonnage is still going to increase. The economy is going to come back in that. So you just got to be a little patient and don't make rash decisions and play the long game. And I think you'll be just fine.

BB: There you have it everybody. Words of wisdom from the man himself. So John, thank you once again for this episode.

JE: Thank you, Brandon.

BB: Absolutely. And thank you guys so much for joining us for the State of the Industry podcast with John Elliott. I have been your host, Brandon Baxter. Join us again next time as John and I continue our discussions, all topics pertaining to transportation. And don't forget to check out expeditersonline.com and justCDLjobs.com for access to over 150 carriers who are actively hiring. And that includes Load One. Until next time.

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