Today we’d like to introduce you to Martha French.
Martha, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I worked in corporate America for over 20 years until founding my own company in 2010. My first ten years were spent helping my employers develop and expand departments to set themselves apart from their competition. I enjoyed moving from project to project and broadening my knowledge. I found safety and compliance when I went to work for a logistics company here in Houston. Safety and compliance was one of my “side projects,” as an Administrative Manager.
During this time, I was exposed to ISO, later Lean and Six Sigma movements that spoke to me. I also learned a great deal about properly and effectively working with independent contractors. With this experience, I learned to focus on procedural processes, continuous improvements, due diligence, and regulatory requirements. This knowledge would later become the foundation of my company, which is assisting other companies to evaluate and improve their safety programs and to create programs where they do not exist while complying with regulatory requirements that pertain to their operations.
While working at the logistics company, I got hooked on learning about the transportation industry as it relates to safety, the transportation regulations, and proper worker classification. All the moving parts that happen for a transportation company to move freight on our nation’s highways is fascinating. It is not just about putting a driver and a box in a truck and watching them drive away. It’s about so much more; it’s about how to safely and compliantly move freight on time without any adverse incident. What originally was a side project, became a permanent full-time job.
I took great pleasure in helping my employers grow their businesses by improving and addressing processes, quality, efficiencies, and/or deficiencies. During this time, I was very fortunate to work for and with great and supportive individuals. But in the back of my mind, I always wanted to run my own business. I always hated the thought of not working for my boss, Jim; but when he left the company then my leaving became easier.
So, when I was contacted in 2010 about working as a consultant for another logistics company, I thought this was my opportunity to start my own company.
However, before I said yes, I called some of the other companies that had approached me in the past about going to work for them, to see if they would also use me as their safety and compliance consultant. When they all said yes, I took the leap, and that’s how TCC began.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
It has not been a smooth road. When I first started, I worked from home. That was something to get used to after working in an office environment for 20 years. So that in and of itself was difficult. I also had to wear several hats that I had not thought about when I thought of starting my own business. I was not only a consultant; I was IT, bookkeeper, staff clerk, travel agent, Human Resources, collector, etc. There was not enough of me to go around. Also, several of my newer clients were carriers with 2 or 4 truck fleets and new to the industry. Not only did they not understand the importance of compliance with the regulations and safety but also did not understand the importance of paying their vendors. I had to write off a lot of revenue my first few years.
Please tell us about Transportation Compliance Consultants.
Transportation Compliance Consultants LLC (TCC), is a boutique consulting company with emphases in safety, regulatory compliance, and worker classification for companies. Most, but not all, of our customers are in the logistics and transportation industry sector. TCC offers standard and custom designed solutions in the areas of risk management, compliance, vendor relations, and safety. Companies can outsource all or parts of their safety, compliance, and/or vendor relations department by either having on-site TCC staff members and/or access to TCC staff members when assistance is needed. TCC specializes in the assessment, improvement, and implementation of cost effective driver and equipment safety and independent contractor programs that comply with all government agency regulations such as but not limited to Federal Highway Administration, OSHA, IRS, etc. TCC offers many other services associated with risk management, mergers, acquisitions, expert witness, etc.
I am very proud that TCC has been instrumental in helping many companies throughout the United States improve their safety thereby improve road safety for all road users.
TCC has also assisted several companies establish solid independent contractor programs that can withstand governmental scrutiny of their program. I believe that what sets TCC apart from other safety and compliance consultants is that we have been where most of our clients are today. We have been in the trenches where we know how it feels to get pulled in different directions and having seemingly diverse requirements placed on you by customers, insurance carrier, the government, and other third parties.
Thus, we know how to work within those parameters while still being able to remain safe and compliant without negatively impacting the operations. We bring industry experience that brings added value to the company by helping companies reduce and mitigate risk and cost associated with risk management.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
If I had to start over, I would only change a few things. I’d start with getting my IT and accounting addressed, established, and set up first. The importance of having a good reliable computer system and job specific software is crucial when starting any business.
Also, setting up your services, cost, and the contract are very important must do’s before getting started.
- Address: 16800 Greenspoint Park Drive, Suite 151; Houston, TX 77060
- Website: www.tccdot.com
- Phone: 281-453-2180
- Email: email@example.com
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