Podcast: Rahmel Wattley’s Trucking Journey
Check out our podcast, Freight Nation, where industry experts talk all things trucking.
In the newest episode of Freight Nation: A Trucking Podcast, host Brent Hutto is joined by Rahmel Wattley, Founder of Truck N’ Hustle. Rahmel’s path to the transportation industry was anything but typical. But his journey has been hard-earned and inspirational along the way.
An Unconventional Start
Rahmel has been in the transportation industry for around twenty years now, but he started out in a rather unconventional way. He was unemployed, searching for an opportunity that was lucrative. At that time, he continued to see marketing for $50,000 a year in the trucking world, an incredibly appealing prospect with potential and more importantly—the means to an end he needed.
Rahmel found a place that was sponsoring people to get their commercial driver’s license and saw it as a no-brainer. After all, they were going to pay for him to learn a skill to bring in a regular paycheck. However, while completing the class, he quickly realized he might not be cut out to drive a truck as a long-term career. But given he had passed and obtained the CDL, he figured he would give it a go and went looking for driving opportunities.
When he was interviewing, he stumbled on an opportunity that changed the trajectory of his career. He told one company that he wasn’t all that interested in driving. Instead of sending him straight back out of the door, they offered him a different role: a dispatcher, managing drivers instead of driving himself. With some previous management experience and given the salary, Rahmel accepted—and began his journey in the trucking industry.
In a short time, he went from an entry-level position to running one of their multi-million dollar accounts. It included more work, more responsibility, and more knowledge that helped fuel his future endeavors.
The Entrepreneurial Bug
After eleven years in the trucking game, Rahmel’s entrepreneurial bug started to kick in, and he began looking for new opportunities.
At his company, they would reach out to driver lease companies during busy months, adding to their normal pool by drawing from another. With his behind-the-scenes role and access to invoices, Rahmel saw the sheer profit the company was making
“So I’m seeing the company charging like, $45 and I’m seeing you’re getting paid, like, $20. There’s, like, $25 in the middle here that this company is getting, right? You do that hourly, this could be a pretty decent business.”
With an eye for good business opportunities, he co-founded his first driver staffing company: Ultimate Driver Staffing, earning $1.2 million in revenue in just one year. And while they hit the ground running and saw great success, he and his co-founder quickly realized they didn’t really understand how running a business worked or how to manage their finances correctly. They eventually parted ways due to their different visions for the future.
FreightFest: A Networking Event for Truckers
Fast-forward to 2019 and Rahmel founded Truck N’ Hustle, the fastest-growing network for transportation and logistics professionals. His work to connect and empower professionals in the industry was an instant hit, and he has successfully built a family of professionals.
“That’s why I call it the Truck N’ Hustle family, because everybody that comes on the show literally is like family. Because we spend time together, right? We literally sit down, we’re talking, we learn about each other, and so forth. So because we’re able to develop these relationships, we have a huge network right, and we have an awesome and amazing network.”
What started as a passion project turned into something he could pour himself into and pour into other people to help them navigate their way to success too. He found a platform that allowed him to talk about the hustle and grind of the trucking business, the importance of putting yourself out there, and how to make yourself better from the missteps along the way.
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