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Podcast: Learning Logistics with Michael Clements and Aaron Dunn of PDQ America

Aaron Dunn, Michael Clements

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Here at Truckstop, we’re no strangers to the value that comes from talking to one another in the industry. We’ve even got the Freight Nation podcast to prove it. But it probably doesn’t surprise you to know we’re not the only trucking podcast out there. Our friends Michael Clements and Aaron Dunn over at PDQ America have hosted over 200 episodes of the Trucking for Millennials podcast, and they’ve learned a lot in the process.

In this episode, Michael and Aaron sit down with Truckstop Chief Relationship Officer, Brent Hutto, to discuss the story behind PDQ America, learning the logistics industry, and the Trucking for Millennials podcast.

The PDQ America Story

PDQ stands for “Pretty Darn Quick”; the company started in 2013 with a hotshot model, one flatbed truck, and a 32 ft gooseneck trailer. With just Michael and one driver, the company took it one load at a time, quickly growing to need another truck and trailer combo, and Michael had to learn all that running a business entails.

“Pretty soon it grew to another truck and a trailer, and then you’re learning your laws. You’re learning that there’s maintenance. You’re learning that fire extinguishers have to be mounted. You got drivers that don’t want to do their logs. It was like, you know, all I was seeing was dollar signs, like, OK, how many? How much can we make off this load going here?”

After only a few months, things were picking up so much that they got their first big truck: a 2007 Freightliner Columbia, quickly followed by a 2011 Freightliner Cascadia. Their success for the first two years was rapid, hauling oil and gas products in a period of snatch and grab. The rapid success was good, but it gave Michael a false sense of security in the business.

Two years later, oil and gas took a significant hit. PDQ started losing customers and amassed a large amount of debt. Michael had to make cuts and reduce his staff to just two drivers to get back to where he had been. However, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. The trials he faced led him to rebrand from a trucking company to a logistics company, changing the name from PDQ Trucking to PDQ America.

Trucking for Millennials

Fast forward to 2019, PDQ America is on the road to success. Michael was eager for a new way to market the company and share his story. After putting his feelers out on LinkedIn, a colleague connected him with Aaron, who has no experience in the trucking world but has been out in the wild creating podcasts. Both felt like they couldn’t pass on the opportunity and discussed the potential of setting up a podcast. 

Aaron went all in and brought on board to help build Trucking for Millennials. The podcast is helping the industry and Aaron learn what it takes to make his business successful. Over the past four years, he has compounded his knowledge by having conversations with truckers, technicians, brokers, and vendors— each with their own unique perspective. He explains, “Everybody has a different frame of the industry, different perspective. And all those perspectives together really help build a professional, true perspective on what’s going on.” 

One thing rings true through every conversation and industry shift: collaboration and discussion are paramount in the industry, so podcasts like Trucking for Millennials and Freight Nation are now needed more than ever.

To find out more about Aaron and Michael and how they are shaking up the world of trucking, tune into this episode of Freight Nation: A Trucking Podcast on Apple, Spotify, or your favorite podcast platform.

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