Intuitive advance planning. The ability to anticipate unexpected circumstances. And a knack for rising to the occasion, even against long odds. They’re all common characteristics of the best logistics management firms. And for Expak Logistics Chairman & Chief Executive Officer Michael Kraus, these attributes are integral to his management style.
Mr. Kraus has guided Expak Logistics to unprecedented growth in one of the most competitive industry sectors, but it hasn’t been easy. Drawing on his varied business experience, Mr. Kraus has helped his firm carve out more than just a comfortable niche in logistics distribution; Expak Logistics is now the preferred supply chain solution, whether for regional last mile distribution, dedicated fleet, warehousing and fulfillment and more, to hundreds of enterprises across the United States.
We recently sat down with Mr. Kraus to learn more about personal sources of inspiration, the future of Expak Logistics (spoiler alert: it’s bright!), effective marketing techniques and more.
1. Who has been your greatest inspiration?
I focus on the inspiration our team provides every day by being aligned for a common cause to provide a superior level of service to our clients. For me, the inspiration comes naturally from our people and our process.
2. What piece of advice would you give to someone who wants to become an entrepreneur?
In my opinion, the critical element is to be “All-In” and relentless in the pursuit of your vision. There are and will be numerous stumbles, roadblocks and disappointments along the way, and it is critical to success that leadership and effort isn’t deterred when faced with adversity.
3. Where do you see your business in 10 years?
Continuing to grow and evolve. Our culture and philosophy is predicated on continuous improvement. We believe we are already the leading service provider in our space. From here, we must continue to expand market share without sacrificing the high levels of service we provide to each customer, no matter how big or small.
4. How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
The best form of marketing is client referrals. We often encourage prospects to ask existing clients to validate the dependability of our service. We prefer to let our actions define our value proposition more so than what we say. Aside from referrals, we have an inside sales team focused on reaching out to prospects via phone and email and have defined protocols in place to ensure we are maximizing our marketing effectiveness.
5. What have been some of your failures, and what have you learned from them?
From a marketing perspective, our biggest failure early on was investing too much time and resources on opportunities that weren’t either actionable or in our strike zone. As we have grown and evolved, we have become more disciplined practicing ‘measure twice, cut once’ (i.e. be thoughtful up front so we don’t waste time down the road).
6. How does your company provide innovation within your industry?
Our business model is based off of improving our customers’ supply chain experience. If we do our job right, no news is good news. Our team, whether it be customer service, IT, accounting, etc., is built to meet the needs of a customer, not to deliver our customer a stock service offering. This is likely most evident on the technology side where we customize our software for each client to provide intuitive workflow that minimizes our client’s need to change workflows and to provide information flow to identify potential issues before they may exacerbate.
We’d like to thank Mr. Kraus for taking time for the interview. Everyone from seasoned business executives to young entrepreneurs will find valuable insight in Mr. Kraus’s responses. To learn more about Expak Logistics and their complete line of supply chain and warehousing solutions, visit their website or call 424-320-5300.