MTM Slam Dunks 2023 Goals: Rebrand, Revitalize, Reinforce, Refocus

Team picture in front of truck

By Taylor Santiago
MTM Vice-President

When 2023 began, our team at MTM had some specific goals that can be summarized in these four R’s: Rebrand, Revitalize, Reinforce and Refocus. 

I’m pleased that we hit the mark in all four of these areas. It sets our team up for the growth we expect and that we are excited about in 2024, which we hope will be our best year yet.

Our growth and success is even more gratifying to me when I look at the overall state of the industry. The trucking industry did not have it easy in 2023. MTM is increasingly in an elite category of companies: Only 4.2% of trucking companies in 2023 had more than 10 trucks, according to data from the American Trucking Associations. We take seriously our responsibility to reliably move cargo, and we are proud to be among the growing and thriving trucking firms in the country.

Here’s what we did in 2023. We hope you will join us for this drive into the future!

Rebrand: New name, new logo, new look

In addition to a new look and a rebranded website, all of our equipment was refreshed with our great new logo, which we designed intentionally to represent MTM’s movement forward. 

MTM LogoDo you see what we see? Because we see MTM driving into the future with our trusted drivers, team members and customers. 

Our official name changed a bit, too: MTM Trucking and Logistics really states what we are and what we do. Trucking has been our prime service; we’ve grown over the years to provide secure warehousing and logistics support. 

Along with a new logo and revised name, we launched a new website that showcases not only our value proposition but also the faces of our team. It was important to us that our customers see the “faces of MTM,” because without this family, there would BE no MTM.

Revitalize: Updated and modern fleet

An MTM truck on the road

We’ve been around for more than 20 years, and our regularly replaced fleet has stood the test of time. We felt certain, however, that 2023 was the year to do a wholesale refresh. In 2023 we replaced a full 50% of our dry van fleet with 2024 model trailers. Those new trucks all bear our new logo. Be we bring the same “premier” service to everything we do.

There are so many benefits to having these new vehicles on the road, including: 

  • Fuel efficiency
  • Reduced emissions, better environmental sustainability
  • Advanced safety features
  • Compliance with regulations
  • Reliability and reduced downtime
  • Driver comfort and productivity
  • Improved cargo safety
  • Telematics and connectivity

We are thrilled our drivers are able to reap the rewards tangibly for their hard work and dedication to MTM. They have helped propel our company forward.

Reinforce: Upgraded technology

Samsara overall view with traffic
Samsara overall view with traffic, as seen by the dispatch team.

We brought in the state-of-the-art Samsara system four years ago, and this year, we really fully took advantage of it. This system, in the hands of our 24/7 experienced operations team, has vastly improved our efficiency and ability to serve our customers.

In addition, the features of Samsara have helped with accountability and driver performance. Paired with our new equipment, this technology has been a game-changer for all of us at MTM.

According to the American Trucking Associations Safety Spend Survey released Dec. 11, 2023, the industry has invested $14 billion in technology, training and additional measures, an amount that is 40% higher than that spent in 2015, when the last survey was conducted.

MTM, meanwhile, has invested in safety through technology upgrades, driver incentives and training programs. After implementing Samsara, the MTM team began using the platform in myriad ways, from monitoring road and vehicle details in real time to compiling data for later viewing.

The payoff for MTM has been fewer truck repairs, lower maintenance costs and higher driver satisfaction as drivers are educated about taking care of their vehicles and incentivized to do so.

A driver safety incentive program was implemented at the start of 2023, tying monthly bonuses to the drivers’ safety scores, which are based on the number of incidents involving harsh turns, harsh breaking, excessive speeding, roadside violations and preventable accidents.

Refocus: Common vision and a culture of collaboration

Taylor Dangerfield and MTM drivers talking
MTM third-party coordinator Taylor Dangerfield talks with two of the MTM drivers.

The culture at MTM is one of collaboration and delivering excellence. In the past year, we’ve added driver training and awards programs as well as team-wide initiatives. Our productivity has improved, and we boast a driver retention rate that is outstanding in an era when finding and keeping great drivers is one of the most-cited issues for trucking companies. Furthermore, 90% of our hires are based on referrals, and the gift keeps on giving.

While an estimated 88,000 trucking companies and 8,000 freight brokerages closed their doors in 2023 (yes, that number is correct), MTM has poured resources into not just maintaining but growing. The trucking industry has been struggling with driver retention for years. At MTM we have a mantra that has allowed us to buck that trend: Teamwork makes the dream work. 

The leadership and professional growth courses we offered to team members this year enhanced that teamwork and the skills of everyone at MTM. That in turn allowed us to bring more value to our customers.

As company leaders, Ryan Penix (VP of operations) and I have completed the Jumpstart program through Grinnell Leadership. In addition, I participate in a monthly leadership program that brings CEOs and company owners together. 

For the team as a whole, we’ve invested in assessments and coaching: Each team member took the Core Values Index test to determine strengths and weaknesses, and then the team met with a  coach to better understand how we can all work together.

While our core internal team grew, we added partners and individuals in specialized areas such as IT, marketing, human resources, finance and legal. Having this support not only allowed us to take advantage of the specialized talents of those we work with but also enabled MTM’s core team to do what it does best: focus on trucking, storage, customized routing solutions and overall logistics.

Building relationships and connecting with community

Toys for Tots drop-off box

Finally, MTM is and always will be about community

I attended an event late last year called Baltimore Homecoming, an event that brings together natives and alumni of the city to find ways to invest in the city. The connections I made at that event and others around the city have been invaluable to me as a trucking executive and a proud Maryland resident. 

As we finalize our status as a certified woman-owned business through the WBENC (Women Business Enterprise National Council) and make connections with organizations such as House of Ruth, we have started plans to encourage more women to take roles as truck drivers. House of Ruth, which provides a safe haven for victims of domestic violence and their children, is just one of the organizations we want to work with in providing training and jobs to women. 

MTM team with MTM Cares T-shirtsWhen it comes to supporting women in the trucking industry, we lead by example. In addition to having women ownership at MTM we have several women in leadership roles as well as as drivers. One longtime MTM driver, Tania Wong-Mills, was recognized in February as a Truck Driver of the Month by the Maryland Motor Truck Association. We hope through training and hiring we can bring more female truck drivers into an industry where women are substantially underrepresented.

At MTM we believe we are more than a business taking up space in the Greater Baltimore area; we are a community member that wants to give back to our community. This year, we were a drop-off center for Toys for Tots. For Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we ordered T-shirts for not just our team but also football jerseys for members of a local Aberdeen team. 

And when a grandfather wrote to me recently asking for some kind of “trinket” for his granddaughter, we ordered up this cool truck and put an MTM logo on it, then sent it off to her in the mail for her school project on Maryland. 

There you have it: A 2023 we at MTM are all proud of. Now it’s onward to 2024, where we put our foot on the accelerator!