Jamie Leone is a jack of all trades and that is why she has been so successful in the realm of logistics. Leone is the Executive Assistant at Mid America Logistics which doesn’t quite describe her job role accurately. The logistics guru wears many hats as no two days, or tasks, are ever the same.
Leone has become known as the company’s “go-to-gal” and when something is needed, she is the one everyone seeks out. It is a role many people want, but few ever achieve in their careers. Some would say Leone is indispensable and without her charm, charisma, and craft, the company wouldn’t be able to run quite as smoothly as it does.
Mid America Logistics now has eight branches across the United States and Mexico. The company continues to grow and Leone recently sat down to tell Totalprestige Magazine about Mid America and her career.
Jamie, can you start off by telling us about Mid America Logistics and your role within the company?
Here at Mid America Logistics, we pride ourselves on being an asset-based brokerage provider that offers transportation services, assisting our customers in creating efficiencies and mitigating risk. We offer sustainable solutions, while keeping our customers bottom line as a primary focus. As the Executive Assistant at Mid America, I have a broad spectrum of responsibilities and everyday presents new tasks. I report directly to Mark Kummer, President and CEO, and assist Mark, our owners, and the executive leadership team daily.
Some of my responsibilities include overseeing our leaderships’ appointment scheduling, managing corporate travel, and assisting with new hire orientation. I also oversee office purchasing, budget management, and assist in reducing overhead. I participate in our monthly and quarterly executive leadership meetings, offering suggestions and taking minutes. Overall, my role is to be a jack of all trades. It gives me pride to know that I am the “go-to-gal” when our leaders need a fresh prospective and to be someone they can call to discuss new ideas.
The company is called a “technology-enabled logistics and trucking” firm. How does technology play a part in logistics and how does Mid America utilize technology?
Mid America utilizes proprietary software for our internal TMS and offers a customizable FMS for our customers. Our proprietary freight management tools are unparalleled in the industry and allow for rapid and high-quality brokerage management services. Whether it’s specific customer management requirements, automation of risk management and compliance, rating suppliers, EDI, automated tracking, or customizable reporting, Mid America Logistics improves efficiencies and manages cost at every point in a customers’ supply chain needs.
What are some of the technology advances being used to improve shipping?
Technology advances in real-time 24/7 tracking systems are being used to improve shipping. Enhances in GPS accuracy, temperature-controlled reporting, and information sharing continue to boost efficiency in supply chain. Integration options are at the forefront of technology advances in the industry. Integration allows proprietary systems to communicate allowing for partnerships in all phases of supply chain, from procurement to distribution, and everything in between, promoting supply-chain optimization.
Mid America is the fastest growing full-service, smart, logistics company in the United States. Can you tell us about its growth and how it has become a leader in the logistics industry?
Mark Kummer joined Mid America as President and CEO in early 2017 and revitalized the logistics firm. Under Kummer’s leadership, Mid America Logistics has grown 400%-plus in an 18-month period. Mid America’s focus on our proprietary technology advancements and employee development directly correlate to the company’s growth. We have made a conscious effort to reinvent the relationships and experiences we have with our customers and partner-carriers. Their needs being our fundamental focus.
In February, the company opened a Nashville branch as the city is one of the fastest growing in the country. There are now eight offices around the U.S. and Mexico. How does having so many offices enable Mid America to thrive in the industry?
By continuing to open offices in strategic locations, we can extend our footprint in the marketplace, allowing us to be closer to our customers and carriers and giving us a stronger understanding of the areas’ market conditions. At Mid America, we consider ourselves an extension of our customers’ shipping teams, and by having Mid America employees nearby, we can be at our customers’ doorsteps anytime they may need us there.
Jamie, what led you to Mid America Logistics and what was your career like before arriving?
I started my career at another logistics company before arriving at Mid America. I have had many roles as my goal was to learn every aspect of the industry and that I did. When the opportunity was presented to work at Mid America, I did my research. Mid America holds the same values that I do, and it seemed like a perfect fit. I was right, I had made the right move to come and work for Mid America. I have been given many opportunities and I appreciate working for a company where your voice is not only heard but respected.
What advice do you have for anyone interested in working in the logistics realm?
Be prepared for hard work! Be willing to put in the hours to learn and grow when you first enter the industry. Act as a sponge and learn from everyone you encounter.
Do you foresee a change in the way good are shipped in the future? Will there be fewer long-haul shipments made and a focus on short trip shipments of goods?
With the advent of 3D printing, the expansion of small package delivery capacity and growth of the final mile sector; shipments will trend more towards a direct from manufacturing or direct from port to consumers. Within the retail sector the number of store fronts is being reduced, which will drive down DC to store over time.
In the industrial sector, 3D printing parts could greatly reduce the amount of long haul truckload shipping by cutting out entire segments of the supply chain. Overall, we should see large longer haul shipments decrease with smaller shipments increase (LTL and Small Packages) Will there be fewer long-haul shipments made and a focus on short trip shipments of goods? Given the advent of the points mentioned above, this will reduce overall distance where markets rely on consolidated distribution centers which are local thus reducing the overall average length of haul industry wide.
What are Mid America’s future expansion plans and what can current and future customers expect?
Current and future customers should expect that Mid America will continue to place their needs first and continue to develop our support teams and technology. We plan to grow our footprint in the industry by growing our carrier partnerships and adding additional offices to meet those needs and streamline supply-chain optimization. Our goal is to have 14 offices open by the end of 2020.
Jamie, what is a day in your life like?
My day typically starts at 5:00 am. My husband heads off to work, I start to get ready and make sure my girls are doing the same. I do a few things around the house while they eat breakfast, then head out the door. I drop the kids off at school and head to the office.
My day consists of meetings and various projects I am working on. Everyday is full of new tasks, no two days are the same. When I arrive home my husband has dinner ready and between the three girls, one of them always has an activity. I admit my husband and I make a great team. I am basically nonstop everyday and wouldn’t have it any other way.
What is something most people don’t know about you?
I was an extra in the George Clooney movie “Up in the Air”.
What makes you smile?
My husband and my three girls always put a smile on my face. At the end of the day, it’s my family and sense of accomplishment that makes me happy.
What scares you?
Something happening to my family that is out of my control terrifies me. A person can plan and take every precaution possible and things can still happen.
Which historical figure do you most admire?
There are quite a few historical people that I admire. However, the person with the character traits that I most admire and look up to is my grandmother. She was a successful business women and balanced her family life without skipping a beat. She is selfless and I have the upmost respect and admiration for her.
Can you share two of your favorite quotes with us?
“Organization is the key.” – My mother, Sherry Degenhardt
“The first step toward success is taken when you refuse to be a captive of the environment in which you find yourself.” – Mark Caine
If you had the power to change just one thing in the world what would it be?
If I had the power to change one thing in this world, I would take away the negativity. I believe when people are negative it effects every aspect of there lives and holds them back from what could be. Whether it be at work or in our personal lives it effects how we interact with one another. Overall, it effects one’s happiness.
For more information on Jamie Leone and Mid America Logistics, please visit https://www.midamlogistics.com/