This week, Legion is celebrating our fourth Million Dollar Club Problem Solver, Laura Townsend.
The Million Dollar Club is achieved when a Problem Solver accumulates $1,000,000 in gross profit over their career. This award requires the Problem Solver to consistently be an outstanding producer, to be mentally tough enough to withstand this industry, and to do whatever it takes to be successful while adhering to the integrity that Legion demands.
Laura started in August 2013 and it only took her about a month to start putting sales on the board for Legion. Her first load was for Jackson Farming Company and she lost $100 trying to get her foot in the door. That aggressive approach to sales has made Laura the fastest Problem Solver to reach the Million Dollar Club to date. That accomplishment did not come easy, though. In 2014, she lost her best customer and was almost immediately back to square one. While many people would have given up, Laura did not. She continued to prospect and re-build her account with hard work and dedication. She finished in the top 3 in gross profit in 2014 and 2015. For 2016, she is our top salesperson and is almost $100,000 ahead of the next closest Problem Solver. Despite the amazing results she is having this year, she continues to prospect and look for new ways to grow her business. Laura has now moved more than 2900 loads, generated over $5.3 million in sales, and has now gone over $1 million in gross profit during her years with Legion. Laura joins Tony Coutsoftides, Sean Bradley and Ryan Olive in Legion’s Million Dollar Club.
As the owner of Legion, it makes me so proud and happy that our top salesperson is a woman, a mother, and a total defiance of every stereotype of a logistics broker in the industry. When people ask me what makes Legion different, all I have to do is point to Laura and say, “that’s our top salesperson.” And they totally get it. Our competitors would never have given Laura a chance – she doesn’t fit the mold of the young, male college athlete that so many of them exclusively recruit to sell. But I would put Laura up against any broker in the world. Her customer service, understanding of the industry, ability to put customers at ease, and deep knowledge of how to sell effectively are proven in her results. She’s a dynamo. She’s our Steph Curry. And she’s incredibly humble and real.
Laura exemplifies everything that makes Legion an amazing place to be, and we’re so glad she’s found tremendous success with us. She deserves it.
A five-question interview with Laura Townsend, Problem Solver….
Most people say logistics is a young man’s game. What made you decide to pursue a career in logistics when that so clearly isn’t your demographic?
Frankly, I like defying the odds and finding my niche in non-traditional environments. What better way to make your mark? I don’t know why logistics is not “my” demographic—women are great multi taskers, problem solvers, consultative sellers, communicators, nurtures and creative thinkers – all the qualities that make a GREAT PROBLEM SOLVER.
What is your favorite thing about working here?
Every day I am encouraged and rewarded for letting my inner entrepreneurial spirit thrive. I have had the ability to build my account in the manner that suits my work style, personality and drive. And there are no limits placed on my ability to succeed.
What is your least favorite thing about working here?
I miss face to face interactions. With all of the tremendous partnerships and bonds that are created either with drivers or customers, it would be really nice to be able to put a face with a name and voice.
What’s the secret to your success?
There are several!
Build intentional relationships internally and externally.
Understand my customer’s needs, what they want and DON’T want from their logistics partner.
Speak my customers language- make it easy for them to do business with me.
Show respect to your drivers, and build trust with them. They are equally important to your success as customers.
Empower your support team to feel the rush of victory right along with you.
Value yourself, your time, your company and your money- be confident.
Know your lane and stay in it!
What’s your favorite Legion memory?
After only being with the company a couple of months, I once asked Tony—“how do I know what commodity to start working on to build my business?” He said, “Laura, more than likely you won’t chose the commodity- the commodity will find you!” It felt like a Grasshopper/Kung Fu moment.
A couple of days later a random inbound call from Ireland that nobody else wanted to deal with rang on the sales line. The customer needed a partner to help him import and move unprocessed, still-bloody sheepskins. Saying yes to the bloody sheepskins and finding the right transportation solution for them ultimately led me to my largest customer!
I am so glad that I took that call, that Tony and Lacy did not laugh me off the floor when I told them I was going to move bloody sheepskins, and they let me run with it! I tell myself everyday, “Take the bloody sheepskin. Do what others are not willing to do and it will pay off”
by Lacy Starling, President & Fearless Leader