After 20+ years in the Freight Forwarding Industry, I have learned that there is one immutable truth to our business: change is inevitable! The question to ask is therefore, “Am I prepared for change?” A great example of this change is stock market volatility as yet another escalation of the trade war occurred. Specifically, 5% more tariffs are expected to be applied to a portion of the $300B in goods already being hit by the trade war. As I witnessed these events unfolding, I thought to myself: “How can I benefit?”
The Trade Wars are changing, in real time, the historically monolithic trade relationship between the US and China towards new countries that are able to provide more favorable import conditions. In 2019 we saw an influx of investment flow to eForwarders like Flexport who are looking to fundamentally change the underlying nature of international shipping commerce. Data analytics and automation are changing our expectations for how we understand and track customer shipments on a moment to moment basis. Environmental regulation is changing the operating models of global Carriers as they seek to maintain max profitability. Equipment shortages, paired with (at times) a shrinking number of available sailing dates, is changing the timeliness and availability of global transport for shippers. With all this “change,” clearly it becomes important to prepare for the unexpected.
The question at hand should therefore focus not on how to I protect against change, but instead how to embrace change! By implementing this simple mindset hack, I can see that there are still endless opportunities for a bright and vibrant future. I hope you can see the opportunity that this change brings too.