Leading by Example
Mac Paddock was born into the transportation business.
The second youngest of five children, his memories of the early days are of Kenworths and late night road trips with his dad, Earl. He drove for the first time at age five, standing up and steering the truck while his dad lit a cigar. And just like his older brothers, from a young age he was always at the yard, washing and fuelling trucks or moving trailer loads of steel to help get things ready for the long haul drivers. “There was always a job to do,” Mac recalls. “Playing with friends came second.”
By the time Mac was 18, he was hauling loads both locally and throughout the U.S. “Driving truck is a great job when you’re young,” Mac says. “I learned a lot about managing relationships and what drives customer satisfaction. Being a professional truck driver requires patience, collaboration and great problem solving skills.” After all, those were the days before the Internet, satellite tracking and smart phones.
Early on in his career, Mac moved into operations and dispatch, where he spent 20-plus years. After his uncle and father passed away in 1992, the role of president was jointly inherited by Mac and his brother Scott.
Today, his favourite aspect of the job is the strategic planning for the end-to-end operations, including warehousing, logistics and specialized haulage. A lifetime of experience in the business allows him to recognize what works, what doesn’t and then put together the necessary pieces.
The result is a strong vision for the company.
“As co-presidents, it’s our job to understand customer needs and anticipate trends. Our intention has always been to become more diversified. We are capable of offering almost anything a customer requires. As a small- to mid-sized company, we can move pretty quickly and adapt to their needs.”
Asked what it means to work for his family’s business, Mac pauses briefly. “We’re definitely carrying on my dad’s vision. We have been able to do that in both good times and bad and those are the experiences that build a business with character.”