As of 2021, only about 22% of transportation workers were women. Even though the logistics and supply chain industry remains a male-dominated one, we have witnessed a steady rise of women professionals in recent years. Many women struggle to get into the industry, but with perseverance and willingness to learn, Tristen made it happen. Currently, Tristen leads thousands of women in her inspired organization from her own desire to learn. I believe she could share with our audience how women are moving the industry forward in the highest inflation the U.S. has seen.
Can you tell us more about, who is Tristen Simmons?

I am a wife, a mother, a mentor, and a woman in trucking that doesn’t mind getting dirty. I started my first trucking company in 2009 as a partnership with my husband. After two and a half years we went out of business. We didn’t have the proper education and resources needed to run a successful trucking company. However, we never gave up. We transitioned into running our own courier service and then towing company. During that time, I did intensive research on how to become a freight broker. I was able to connect with the owner of a large third-party logistics company who hired me as a freight agent. In 2016 I birthed the brand Lady Logistics, LLC. Once I put it online, women began to reach out to me inquiring about how they too could start a business in Trucking or Logistics. The more they reached out to me, the more I wanted to help, so I then founded the Leading Ladies of Logistix, an organization that connects women in the industry with training and resources to help them start or grow their businesses. Now as a full-time entrepreneur in the Trucking and Logistics businesses, I now have the honor to train and consult others on how to get started in the industry. I didn’t have that when I first got started.

Can you tell us about your Trucking and Logistics brokerage firm and why you launched it?

Lady Logistix LLC is a female-led logistics consulting firm specializing in transportation management and training. After going out of business and learning from various resources and investing in more proper education, I knew I was ready to lead other women to do the same.

Your son who was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy also helped launched her Million Dollar, can you tell us about how he helped you?

My 14-year-old son really pushed me into the trucking industry as I knew I wanted to create a better life in entrepreneurship than working my full time job for the government. My son Tahj requires special attention due to his condition. From the age of one he had to have multiple therapy sessions per week. I was working a full-time job for the government and my boss at the time always knew about my situation of having a disabled son. Weekly she would question me, asking how much more therapy was he going to need and how much longer would I need to leave work early. From there I knew I needed to go into full-time entrepreneurship.

What are some of the challenges that you’ve faced being in a male-dominated industry?

One challenge in particular as me being a broker there are a lot of times I’m on the phone booking business or in our industry “loads”. Sometimes, many owner operators are calling Lady Logistix for loads, and they try to give us a hard time on rates. During times of inflation, we often see that more where rates may be lower and companies like myself try to be fair, but it must make sense for our business. After a conversation we’re usually able to come to a common ground and move their freight.

Why do you feel Women, especially Black women are still underrepresented in careers?

It can be tough where sometimes where we feel muzzled, or we feel like we must act a certain way to be accepted. I do believe we as black women need to stand up more and offer the facts and forget about the politics of a job or a company. Be strong in your opinions and your values and don’t fold. There is also a lack of positions and jobs for black women to excel in their job roles. This is the main reason why Black Women go into business for themselves, so they won’t feel muzzled, stuck, or left out.

What are some of the top reasons women convert to the trucking industry?

I believe a lot of women convert to the industry to assist their spouses or other family members. I’ve seen experienced company drivers introduce their wives to the industry to help them start their own trucking company.

Can you tell us how using entrepreneurship was about to be a path to leading over 7,000 women in your Trucking Mentorship Organization, “Leading Ladies of Logistix?”

Leading Ladies of Logistix was created in 2017 by me with the goal of creating a safe, networking space for women in the male-dominated logistics industry. After failing in my first effort in the trucking industry, I gave it another try. I didn’t see organizations that catered to minority or black women, so I created one myself. When women kept reaching out to me for me to help, I said I must make this bigger and more inclusive to black women.

What are 7 Steps on how individuals can profit in the Transportation & Logistics industry and not become a part of the majority of transportation companies that go out of business within the first 5 years?

Seven Steps for individuals to profit in the industry will always begin with Training. The next step is found you a mentor that will be your monthly motivator, educator, and go-to source for times when you’re unsure. Thirdly, you must have a good accountant. In the trucking industry, you can make a lot of money, but you can also lose a lot of money. You need an accountant to check your workflow and help you scale your business. The fourth step is having superb business credit. You need access to working capital to grow your business. You must work smarter and not harder each day in trucking.  The fifth step is understood compliance. There are so many reasons your truck can pulled off the road or you can be shut down for business. Systems and processes should include compliance and training for your employees and yourself. The sixth step is you need operating and procedures to run the business. If you’re no longer here, you should make sure your business can run smoothly. The final step is network!

What would you like our views to gain from this interview?

I would like viewers to gain that what you do today, doesn’t have to be your future. Your future is tomorrow. If you’re tired of your circumstance, don’t settle. Pick up a skill, take classes, reach out to someone you want to mentor, save your money to start something new. You don’t have to stay where you are today.

How can people connect with you to learn more?

I would like for everyone to stay in touch with me on all social media platform at Lady Logistix. My website is also where readers can book a time to speak with me.

Photo Credits: P3 Photography 08