Every company runs a little differently than the next. At STS, we run smoothly with over 25 years of transportation logistics experience under our shared belt. We are more than just metal and wheels, and this is how we do it…

PLANNING TRANSPORTATION

As an extension of your event planning team, we offer advice on ways to reduce the budget and streamline service. We can help eliminate out-of-the-way hotels and design a more cost-effective and convenient transportation plan. We work with local government agencies (parking, public works departments, CVBs, airport authorities and police departments) to cut through the red tape and get things done properly. 

KNOW YOUR SHOW

Because we work on many of the same programs yearly, we aim to develop a thorough understanding of each event’s unique culture and features. We learn the travel patterns of the attendees, predict when they come and go, how many to expect, and the type of service they require. This step also allows us to ensure continuity from one year to the next, while strengthening our relationships with our customers. 

THINKING LOGISTICALLY

We have worked in almost every major metropolitan city in North America, as well as many cities abroad. This experience means we know the streets, venues, and government agencies needed to work efficiently and effectively. Our team knows a successful transportation program takes more than just buses. We are trained to think logistically about every move we make. 

BEST VEHICLES AT THE BEST PRICE

Our experience in the motorcoach industry ensures that we know which questions to ask vendors, what’s reasonable and what’s not. You can count on us to negotiate on your behalf without sacrificing quality. Our team provides creative solutions to meet budget needs and deliver what’s best for each individual event.

PROVIDING CONVENIENCE

Working with STS eliminates the process of searching for a qualified transportation vendor in each city.  With us, you work with the same team each year – a team who understands your business and your event. It’s fast, real, and simple one-stop shopping. 

BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS

Our emphasis on building strong relationships extends beyond our clients. We place the same value on our relationships with vehicle vendors and contract staff because we understand that these are strategic partnerships.

 

Now that you know the secrets behind how we do what we do at Stewart Transportation Solutions, check out our team or read through other blogs for more company and industry related information.

Anyone who knows anything about us knows we are not at all shy about singing the praises of our team. After all, our exceptional team is the not-so-secret ingredient to our thriving company culture. And that leads us to what this blog post is about – personal goals, professional growth, and our company culture.

We took a hard look at what company culture actually is and what it means to us. If you subscribe to any business publication, you’ve probably read an article or two about company culture. But have you ever stopped to wonder, “what the heck is company culture?” We did.

We did a lot of research and settled Matt Blumberg’s definition:

“Culture is the collection of business practices, processes, and interactions that make up the work environment.”

If you look at culture from this perspective, it is an inevitable aspect of any company, regardless of whether it’s intentionally nurtured or passively observed. One thing is for sure – our team does not sit on the sidelines. We make things happen! That’s why we decided to take an active role in cultivating and developing our people and foster personal and professional development.

Our goal is to build a culture founded on continuous learning. We asked each employee to set 3 personal and/or professional goals, and we helped fund a portion of those goals. We’re pretty proud of what they accomplished. Check it out.

2017 Team Goal Highlights:

Bethany Arthur (Sr. Logistics Manager) knew that she was most at peace when she was gardening but was unable to maintain one because of her travel schedule. So, she brought the garden to work. She and Liz DeJesus (Marketing Manager) combined their budgets and enlisted the help of Beau Carter (Logistics Coordinator) to make the first ever Stewart Transportation Solutions community garden.

Surprise outcome: Beau discovered he actually has an interest in gardening! And just last week, as we began preparing the 2018 garden, Beau could be found collecting worms in the parking lot.

Jessica Brinks (Program Manager) set out to get her Group Fitness Instructor Certification. And great success! She received her certification in November 2017.

Kym and Roman Thomas (Sr. Account Manager / Program Manager) pledged to live life more fully outside of work, and with their schedules it nearly seemed impossible! But they took a whirl at a cooking class as a more experiential date night and took two proper vacations together to Costa Rica and Cancun.

Jazz Godard (Sales & Marketing Coordinator) read over 55 books in 2017, just 5 books shy of her 60 book goal.  She also set the ambitious goal of buying a rental property and accomplished that goal in February of 2018.

Colleen Chase (Sr. Account Manager) felt a calling to become more of a culture beacon. In doing so, she decided to work on building her coaching and mentoring skills. She is responsible for mentoring several people on the team!

Liz DeJesus set out to get back into running by signing up for a 5K by April 30, 2017. She crossed the finish line on April 15, 2017 and hasn’t stopped running since.

Anke Bieler (Program Manager) is one of those people who wants to learn…and then learn some more. She decided to take MIT’s “Introduction to Computer Science and Programming using Python” and received her certificate of completion in 2017.

Lacy Dainwood (Finance Manager) wanted to grow into her new role by enhancing her knowledge of Quickbooks. She passed her QB course with an A and is on to the next course!

Al Fernandez (Sr. Field Manager) took strides at being more organized at work and home. He even got a personalized planner to help him along the way. He is staying committed to this goal in 2018!

Brandon Terpstra (Director of Nat’l Accounts) had high hopes to read a book a month last year. Instead, he found a love for educational and informative podcasts! We say, FAIR TRADE! He’s now entertaining the idea of audiobooks in 2018.

While 2017 was focused primarily on personal goals and individual growth, we’re designating 2018 as the year of professional development and company growth. Although some individual missions and objectives have continued into this year, we are excited to transition into a new chapter of goal planning: setting SMART goals & KPIs.

Company perks like our garden, afternoon run club, and goal-setting assistance certainly contribute to a healthy company culture and that’s why we offer them to our employees. The evolution of our goals program and an emphasis on continuous learning helps us keep that culture spark alive. So… what does your company culture say about your organization? We want to know!

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By Eddie Stewart, CEO, Stewart Transportation Solutions, Inc.

For third-party companies in the meetings and events industry, a good relationship with a vendor can make all the difference. And we should know!

As meetings and conventions become larger and more complicated, third-party companies have become an integral part of how planners operate. With the ability to streamline the planning process, they take on the task of dealing with vendors or venues, contracts, details, logistics and the minutia associated with planning a meeting.

In order for third-party companies like ours to make it all happen, we must rely heavily on the relationships we have built in cities across the globe. A good relationship can make the impossible, possible. And in the event transportation industry, there are three types of relationships that stand out from the rest – our relationship with the vehicle company, the drivers and our on-site staff.

Some people are surprised to learn that we don’t own buses or vehicles of any kind. This means that we’re not limited by geography or the size of a fleet, which allows us to provide transportation services anywhere the client decides to hold an event or meeting. In order to do this, we depend on the fleets of transportation and bus companies throughout the United States and abroad.

Whether you talk to a CMP or one of our Program Managers, they will tell you that knowing the right person to call makes all the difference. And it’s a very symbiotic relationship. We depend on them to get the job done right and they look to us to bring them good business. We respect our vehicle vendors and understand their needs. Because of this, they will work with us to find solutions to most inventory or availability issues that can come up.

Of course, the power of a good relationship extends beyond knowing the right vehicle vendor.  The men and women who drive those vehicles can have a big impact on whether a transportation program is successful or not. We figured out pretty quickly that a happy driver can make all the difference. That’s why we provide a cash gratuity to all of our drivers (believe it or not, many event transportation companies don’t do this!), take the time to get to know their names and make sure they get their required breaks. They appreciate this and will often go above and beyond to provide our clients with the best possible service. We also have drivers who request to work on our shows just because they enjoy working with us. A happy driver also makes the job a lot easier for our staff.

The relationships we have built with our travel and local staff are essential to what we do. It’s more than just hiring a body to stand on the curb and herd people onto a bus. We depend on our network of 400+ contract staff to keep it all flowing smoothly on-site. At the start of every show, we make sure they are trained on more than just the show schedule. We make sure they know us as a company, our culture and that they are part of our team. They also get a crash course in Servant Leadership – our management philosophy.

Relationships are an important part of any industry, but particularly for companies like ours. We are able to do bigger and better things for our clients year after year because of the vendors and people we depend on. Respecting the relationships that keep the doors open and the clients happy is key to third-party success.