Supply Chain Now Radio Episode 298

Prefer to watch the podcast in action rather than just listen?  Watch Scott and Greg as they welcome Daniel Burrows to the Supply Chain Now studio in Atlanta, GA.

In episode 298 of Supply Chain Now, Scott welcomes Daniel Burrows, Founder & CEO of XStream Trucking, to the Supply Chain Now studio.

[00:00:05] It’s time for Supply Chain Now Radio Broadcasting live, the Supply chain capital of the country, Atlanta, Georgia. Supply Chain Now Radio spotlights the best in all things supply chain the people, the technology, the best practices and the critical issues of the day. And now here are your hosts.


[00:00:29] Hey, Scott Luton. Good afternoon. Welcome back to Supply chain now. Got a great show teed up here today. Own the episode today. We’re talking with the Supply chain entreprenuer that is driving innovation in the transportation space. So stay tuned for what is sure to increase your supply chain innovation IQ. Quick programing note before we get started, you can find supply chain now wherever you get your podcasts from Apple podcasts, Spotify, YouTube, you name it. We’d love to have you subscribe so you don’t miss a thing. So let’s dove right in this welcome. In our special guest for today’s show, we have Daniel Burrows, CEO and founder, Xtreme Trucking. Daniel, how you doing? I’m good. Happy to be here. I know you are putting a lot of stuff into this week. Right. I think you’re it may be five days long, but might feel like 15 days after Friday at 5:00 p.m.. Right.


[00:01:22] As well as Supply chain. Right. You’ve got to get it all in a row. Back to back. And then somebody looks at the calendar and there’s a there’s a slot. So that gets booked to love it.


[00:01:31] But I’m happy to be here. Well, it’s great to have you here in Atlanta. Know you here. You’re here for a conference. And we were very opportune, opportunistic to have you sit down and tell us all about yourself and Xtreme Trucking. You’re really doing some innovative things in that space, which we’ll touch on momentarily. But before we get there, Daniel, like we all start with like we start all of our guests. Let’s get to know you better. So, Daniel, tell us about yourself, including a couple of anecdotes about your upbringing or your education or what have you.


[00:01:58] Well, so I have a mike here, Max, and a slight accent. I have I I was born in Baltimore, but actually grew up about half my childhood in the U.K. So I’ve always lived with one foot in either continent. I can say that that’s always helped me look at things from a different angle, because I’ve always I’ve always lived in different environments and went to different types of schools. And I think that’s that’s always been a great part of my my upbringing. So went to study physics. I really enjoyed that. And energy, actually. And then I learned, you know, the amount of contribution to energy that that’s that that the supply chain and transportation in particular countries do. So late in my career focused more on that physics that that’s above my math paygrade mind to heart.


[00:02:48] I’d say it was it was it Imperial College physics degree is a lot of fun, but at it you work hard and makes you feel very dumb.


[00:02:57] But then eventually you get there. And I was so glad I did. I don’t think I’ve done anything as hard since. Really?


[00:03:04] All right. So and also like something you Sheer there, a variety of environments that you seemed like that made up your your upbringing a bit, that that degree of diversity and different thinking in different environments, different countries. How does that impact your world view and in your degree of creativity and how you approach problem solving and what not?


[00:03:28] I think I think it’s essential. I think that talking to people, you know, we have a supply chain now that goes across the world. Our customers are are based across the US. We are the headquarters. The company are in California and we have office in Phenix and other places. And I think being able to relate to talk to a diversity of people around the world, think about things in different ways, solve problems, every got differently to solving problems. And it’s just narrow, focused if you. And I think more interesting if you can. Life is more interesting if you can meet more people and do things. So I think, you know, and and finding that wherever you are. So whether, you know, we were just talking before we came on air about how you can access information from everywhere now. And so podcasting Matthiesen a great way of doing that. Yes.


[00:04:16] All right. So let’s shift gears a bit and let’s talk more about your professional journey prior to extreme trucking. I really enjoy kind of our brief pre-show conversation in kind of getting a sense of of where you been and some of the big initiatives you’ve been part of. Tell us about that before your current role before founding XStream Trucking, where you spend your time.


[00:04:35] Yeah. So as a as a high schooler, I was like, I’ve got to I’ve got to figure out how to make money. So I worked on a marketing like back in the early days of paper click. So I did that. That paid my way through college building websites and things. And that got me kind of into the startup bug. So a lot of my clients were where startups. So I was going to school in England, but I was working for a company in Seattle and my. My holidays and working them, so that gave me access to kind of like the idea that companies aren’t things they’ve been around forever. They’re small companies. You can try them. So that was the beginning. And then.


[00:05:10] So if I could if I got a real quick. So how unique is it to work for a startup? I think if I heard you there. And I certainly pre-show it helped fund your collegiate. Yeah. Adventure. Right. How how how meaningful and how impactful was that? Were those that exposure to startups, to becoming a startup entrepreneur yourself?


[00:05:34] I mean, I think it was super important. I mean, so. When I was growing up, my family was all about. We had a lot of health care people in our family. My mom was a nurse. A lot of academics, very few, very little access to business. And my. And then having those experiences early on helped me think about businesses and and the creativity and the. And working with teams to solve problems. That’s what a small business is like. We got a small problem. Got an idea. We knew something better, something different. Hopefully 10 times better, because otherwise it’s hard to survive. And, um, and I think that that was super important. And I would encourage you and people who are thinking about it, like try and do some. You can do small amounts of work, consulting work for small companies. They can’t afford a full time anything. And so you can go on up work or other things or contact people directly, find some skill you can do that they need help with. And so we’ve got freelancers who help us with Salesforce and Web design and other things. And that’s exactly what I did when I was young.


[00:06:36] Ups works great platform, the one you mentioned there in this gig economy, you can find some great talent, great contributors on there. All right. So let’s say you were working for. Excuse me, very several startups if kind of paid your way through college. And then what? Yes.


[00:06:51] To college. And then when I graduated, it graduated in 2009, which was a great time. I did my my masters and finish my master’s in 2009 at Stanford at Imperial Empire. I went to Stanford a bit later. So I collected two masters. Why? Why not? I’m a glutton for punishment. So I graduate as nine and I was like, wow, the world’s falling apart. This is a great time to graduate. So I was like, pretty not time to start a new venture. So I went in and worked for Oliver Wyman, did a lot of energy and retail consulting for them, a lot of data. And that’s really where I think the earliest part of my career was all about getting small startup experience. And that was when I learned how to talk to Fortune 50 companies and build presentation and sales. And both those experiences have been important to combine to cause some of our customers now a Fortune 50 companies. And I think that combining the consulting experience with that started experience was it was important. So all of Wyman’s for four years that went into investing in venture capital in London for a couple of years, and then I had the option to go to do an MBA at Stanford.


[00:07:57] Mm hmm. Gosh, only thing you had done as rockets and in terms of all things complex rocket science, the only thing missing from your list.


[00:08:04] Well, that was my hobby. So I as a kid, I had to remember those little three stage Rod things and then you lose them. They go too far and hit that neighbor’s house. Never understood how they worked there. They were fun.


[00:08:16] All right. So so cash and an energy consulting. I mean, I mean, it’s at. So part of your mission now and I want to jump too far ahead because I kind of want to hear about, you know, the genesis and the years that just preceded Xtreme Trucking. But but now, beyond generating fuel made savings to two extreme trucking customers, bottom line, it’s also about tackling harmful emissions. Is it a lot of learnings when you were doing energy consulting with it? Is that what helped that no noble mission kind of come to fruition?


[00:08:50] Man Yeah. So my master’s in physics was in was in climate modeling. And then it was. And then I spent the summer doing a research project building solar cells. And the problem of our solar cells were that they were damaged by oxygen. There’s a lot of oxygen around. They were damaged by, you know, any kind of sunlight, which was problematic for solar cell. Interesting. So those didn’t go so far. But but I I really realized that technology and business was the way to solve that problem. Like, I kind of I was thinking about doing more research. I was like, let’s go into business and find big businesses and help them improve their efficiencies to help them with their bottom lines. And that’s what I learned in consulting. So it was you know, it was my way of tackling carbon emissions. And I think that that was important in 2009. It’s more important today is that story is clear.


[00:09:44] But but I think that the way to do that is, is through a what I call a NPV positive net present value positive project, you know, something that helps people today improve their business. I love that. Okay.


[00:10:01] So after the consulting space, after I think you said the investment, your space of time and then in the investment space, is that right? That’s right. Yep. So you were very I mean, as I think about kind of your unique journey is so crystal clear, my mind, how these things kind of came together to really give you some some great tailwinds into the startup community. Yeah. Tailwinds.


[00:10:26] Yeah, that’s the goal is intentionally. Yeah.


[00:10:30] So we end up in epidemic’s. That’s right. But but it maybe it’s maybe it’s makes sense looking back on it but at the time. I think all that all these cliches about being opportunistic, figuring out like people that, you know, that can help you get to the next thing is very important. So I wouldn’t say it was a plan from the beginning, but it was actually back in my MPO college days where the idea for extreme trucking originally originated. It was on a road trip, was driving and we saw a lot of semis in the US and we were at a truck stop. Or you go in first off, I was going up, going down the coast. So my dad was living in Seattle, so I was going down to California, back up again. And and we had we had a couple of Brits in the car with me. And so we were gonna share driving. I woke up and we were driving on the wrong side of the road.


[00:11:21] And so I did the rest driving for the trip. I was like, you guys, you guys are not rude. Now, it’s because this is like I’m driving. So.


[00:11:30] And I was tired. So we were having a break at a truck stop and I was having a nap. And the truck pull up next to me is idling his engine super loud. Right. And so and I’d never, you know, never really understood trucking or anything. So I knocked on his door. Why are you idling so? Well, I live in my truck, you know. And, you know, that provides my power, my air conditioning. And so the first thing I did was like, OK. Wow. Like, this guy has to live with this loud engine. Like, can we design a small like generator to help him and reduce emissions? Because using a turning over a huge truck engine for air conditioning doesn’t seem like the best way. I was too late. AP user on their way and other things, but it got me interested in this field. And three, you know, three million drivers in the U.S. and live live in trucks. And I just got fascinated by the trucking industry and I. And and that’s where I xstream genesis came from, that road trip. Mm hmm. All right.


[00:12:21] So let’s talk about when you say clearly you’ve been inspired, you’ve had some personal interactions that help gave some early credence to the problems you’re looking to solve. When did it start to really, you know, become official and and talk about that and talk about some of your earliest customers?


[00:12:44] Yeah. So it was a project for a long time. I filed a patent and I was living in England working full time. And I was phoning America going, you know, they’re here in this British accent going, hey, let me tell you how to run trucks better. Turns out that wasn’t a great way to get their attention. So when I came over to Stanford and start living America, I could then I actually used my idea to run through some of the classes. So I did some of the data analysis classes with data from trucking. I did some marketing classes with them.


[00:13:16] And so, you know, one of the things we did, I got sort of have a test bed for some ideas. And I I was looking and I think this is a really important point. If you’re gonna if you think that starting a company or or idea, look for the reason not to do it. Right. You know. And so what’s the what’s the thing that would stop you doing it and test that first? And I kept not finding a reason why not to do it. And so and then when I swear in 2016, when I graduate, I did first and our first customer, fantastic fleet driving team drivers, high, high mileage. They they’ve been looking for a solution. And we built them a product and they were like, oh, I was like, this is gonna be a prototype. We’re gonna but we will we will walk with you. We will make sure that it works well for you and we’ll look after you. And they they they were fantastic. All right. So let’s talk about exactly what Xtreme Trucking does.


[00:14:13] We talked about the entreprenurial journey and now kind of from a not features and benefits, but but, you know, kind of what it is peeling the layers back. What is it? What do it.


[00:14:24] Cor yeah. So Class 8 trucks, you got your tractor, your trailer gap between the two. Imagine that. So that gap there has been there since the 60s and it’s designed to allow you to turn. And the thing I realized is you don’t turn on the freeway when you’re going fast, 60 miles an hour. If you turn you’ve got big problems bigger than we can deal with. So what we do and of course, you don’t want that gap, because what the gap does is air goes into the gap and we call it the black hole of aerodynamics and it gets sucked in. And so so what we do is, is we produce panels that when you go above 50 miles an hour, the panels fold out, bop sides and top and create a smooth surface like like it turns the truck into a bullet train. And when you’re going fast, that’s super important. That saves your fuel when you go in slow, automatically. We use pneumatic to pull those panels back in. And the gap is there again, and you can turn like you did before. So it’s a it’s an epidemic product. It’s the first active epidemic product for trucks. And it and it saves our our our fleets customers a lot of fuel without changing how they drive the driver. You know, it doesn’t it doesn’t affect the driver. Love it. And I love it.


[00:15:40] That’s lucky. So I still love it, too, which is also lucky. I have people who like have have start ups and like the two, three years and like, oh, I love it. It’s great. It’s great fun.


[00:15:51] So it and it’s automatic. Automatic. Very important. So Driver has 100 and 1000 things to do.


[00:15:59] And, you know, they’re tired. They’re driving. If you if you have something wish. The driver needs to do something. One time in a thousand, he’s going to get that wrong. And then there’s a problem. So we have sensors. We have everything’s automated.


[00:16:12] I really love that. So let’s talk about the benefits. And because my walking around since I’ve never driven a truck, but I’m thinking that saves officially on gas efficiency mileage. Yep. Right. Yep. About making it more aerodynamic. Mm hmm. Tell us about what’s the return on it.


[00:16:33] Yeah. So certainly closing the gap. Burns less fuel that saves you money. The other thing is, is that this is gets a little bit more Technical that you have these side extenders on the trucks already. You can have shorter ones so you can have a bigger gap normally, which means you actually have less damage. So the other thing is like. Having the truck able to have two different shapes one for driving slowly, one for driving fast enables you to have a bigger gap in it, driving slowly emerge you side, extend your damage. So there’s two real things that we do for our fleets. So we’re cutting down maintenance time, not mean vessels. And in currently, you know, it’s hard right now to find drivers. It’s hard to find technicians or fleets really want something that reduces their labor costs.


[00:17:17] So to our audience, we chatted with Daniel Burrows, CEO and founder of Extreme Trucking. You know, Daniel, do you feel based on the conversations you’re having, the adventure at customers you’re talking to? There’s a rightly so. There’s a huge focus on the trucking truckers shortage. Right. However, what is equally as important, but not nearly talked about enough and not nearly the same, is that the technicians and the maintenance, the mechanics and the folks that keep these these engines in these big vehicles moving, it is it is critical.


[00:17:51] And, you know, I think people think we need to as a country, I think we need to have another think about how we’re thinking about education and apprenticeships and opportunities for people to enter these well-paying, great jobs, steady jobs. And, you know, the fleets need more of these. And I think that we’ll see more vocational work. And I think that’s a that’s a fantastic thing for. And we need them because we need them to instill a trucking. Yes, sir. Selfishly.


[00:18:21] Well, at least let’s shift over. I know that there is a sustainability play here as well. And I know this baked in the part of the D, it seems like the culture and the DNA of the company. Right. Speak more to that.


[00:18:35] So we were careful about how we talk about that. So it’s important to me. It may not be important to all our customers the same extent. And that’s okay. What we know that our customers have to drive their trucks and deliver freight to their customers and they’ve got a bottom line, which is often very narrow. So we’ve we’re very we’re very clear like it. It saves carbon. And it’s important to me and important to many of my team, to my many members on my team. And it’s important to some of our customers and not important to all of our customers because they’ve got their day to day, which they’ve got to get done. Right. And I think, um, so we we we we talk about it. When when asked. But. But for our fleet customers, they’re buying it because it saves them their bottom line. Fuel is a third of their cost. Drivers about another third. So if you can make, you know, five percent saving on a third of their cost and they’re only making two pennies, you know, profit that can I can double the profits. Yeah. Okay.


[00:19:32] All right. So as not just founder, but also CEO of Extreme Trucking, we always like to ask these these these leaders where where do they spend their time and then where is their favorite place, their favorite activity? They really, like, spend their time. What what’s what would you be your answers to those two questions?


[00:19:51] Well, I think so. My role is changed. It’s okay. My role has changed over time. I think I’m still I still enjoy it the most when I get into product, when I’m, you know, designing things, working with customers, solving problems like what happens if, you know, we want to put a spare tire here so we can design. My engineers prefer it when I don’t.


[00:20:13] So so I I and I’m becoming more disciplined over time.


[00:20:18] But I think making one of the things that you’ve got to do is see, oh, is trust your team, build a team, empower the team. And that’s something that I’m I’m growing at. And I wouldn’t say I’ve got the solution to that. I’m. So where do I spend my time? Today was a great day. I was at the Sheer at the TMC show in Atlanta. Is there is the big truck show. I was talking to many of the top truck fleets in the U.S. and and talking to customers that their problems and how we could help them and and where we fit into the puzzle because every got a lot on. And these shows are fantastic way to talk about innovation.


[00:20:59] And it seemed like in talking appreciate a lot of light. You saw a lot of light bulbs go off throughout that series discussions you’re having here in Atlanta.


[00:21:06] Yeah, yeah. I mean, it’s you know, it’s well, and some of these customers, you know, we’ve been we’ve seen them a couple times. You got trucks running with them and then you catch up with them and they’re like, yes, we you know, we’re gonna expand that. We’re gonna do more of these. And, you know, we wear one of our early partners is U.P.S. and they have they’ve talk publicly about how we’ve been helping them on with their trucks. And and that’s just been a fantastic partnership for us. Wow.


[00:21:32] And I can I can only imagine how large their fleet is. And in a great what a great, you know, for an early stage company to be working with an iconic brand like that.


[00:21:42] Right. I mean, it makes the world of difference for start up. And you’ve got to find people who believe in what you’re doing, believe in you. And then you’ve got to return that favor. You’ve got to work. Really.


[00:21:53] Hard for them because, you know, they’re used to dealing with a company with a thousand engineers and everything, and so you can make up for that by showing up and just making making everything right for them.


[00:22:05] So I’m I’m going to can’t throw a curveball at you. Yeah, I think you it’s right up your alley and I’d love to get your take on this. So we’ve got a variety of friends and friends of the show that are part of innovation centers here, there and everywhere. And we had a we went through one of those, by the way. OK. OK. With them, which one locally would. Can you Sheer?


[00:22:27] Yeah. It’s called. So it was it was called Radic hand and it was a Stanford. Like it just had a shop and it got products. We build the first ones and we had I had like addres like fifty thousand dollars. And and that was it, you know, and we were building our first prototypes out of that shop and it gave us some real access to space materials. And without that sort of thing, like I couldn’t have done it. And so I think, you know, we’re in a innovation center here and I just looking around is exciting. See, a little space is that thing, because each innovation requires that space and that time to do stuff.


[00:23:05] Could I try to you. No, no, no. I think this is this is a perfect foreshadowing. Yeah. When we’re talking about big global companies and we’re not picking on U.P.S. at all. But but just all that. There’s so much interest in global large Fortune 50, Fortune 100, Fortune 500 companies to work with these forward looking ideas and products and services that come out of that, the startup space. A lot of entrepreneurs have told us a lot of innovation centers for that matter, have told us that these large companies don’t always really know how to work with startups. And in early stage companies. Can you speak to that a little bit?


[00:23:44] Yeah. I don’t think you go there first. So we think innovation trucking, if you look at historically people of test on small fleets gone, sort of scaled up with large fleets. And then the best innovations have ended up as an OEM option. You buy with your new, you know, Freightliner or whatever. And so in that journey, we started off and we did our first in a million miles of testing, not with the copper fleets and some of our backers like now go for, you know, go to u._p._s. Like, if we do, we will die. And, you know, because they will expect a certain level that we are not at yet. So I think being realistic about where you are and then so we did a lot of testing. We we started off with like aluminum panels. We move to these high impact composite panels and we upgraded pneumatics. We built that people a software stack from and all of our things are IAPT because they we’ve got a box that tracks every savings of every one. Well, it needs be built. And I think if we built that under the burning glaze of a Fortune 50 company, that, you know, frankly, if they’re spending time on something, it’s got to move their needle somewhere. Right. Then I think that that would have been really tough. I think would have fallen over ourselves. I think I think being careful, if you’re, you know, to make sure that it’s working and then go and get the scale and then from from John Haber company to stuff.


[00:25:02] Okay. So now I want to broaden out a little bit like we typically do. You know, I would love to get you to weigh in, Daniel Owen, when you when you look at the global business community. But but the global supply chain community. So much is going on. Yeah. I mean, it’s exciting. Yes. We could do interviews 24/7, not cover everything. What one or two issues or challenges or trends or developments or you name it or you track and more than others right now.


[00:25:32] Well, as we sit here in February, twenty in the corona viruses is sort of rearing its ugly head more. One thing that I’ve been thinking about is and it’s affected our supply chain in ways I didn’t expect. And it is because we have some components made in China. Most of our components are made in the U.S. but aren’t you know, you look at our panels and they open and shut on track and it looks like a pretty simple thing. And then you peel it back and it’s got electronics. It’s got pneumatics. It’s got automatic control box. It’s called composite materials. It’s got to compile it tube’s got rivets, it’s got hardware, it’s got aluminum mounts, it’s got these different places. And we’ve got all these different suppliers. And I think that you see this more and more with this like global supply chain, because we can as a startup with half a guy on while we’ve got a fleet, we’ve got full time supply chain people. NAVILLE We started we can we can source directly from China in a way that you couldn’t for some components before. So what happens when, you know, something like a global interruption happens and we also we do just-in-time manufacturing, so we keep our inventory low. Then something nice comes along and something that that that advantage lower cost, higher quality because they’re specialists translates into huge disadvantage on resilience. I think that when things are going well, it’s hard to to price in that resilience issue earlier on. So I don’t know whether you talk to other people about this, but I think thinking about how these global supply chains just-in-time manufacturing locally, I look great on the books, but they have these like software costs. They’re so hard to see from the beginning until something until something happens, say like, oh, oh, well, I’ve got to. And so now we’re, you know, scrambling to try and figure out how to how to catch up and solve those problems along with the rest of the world. Right. Right. Right. You’re going to see Sue Apple saying they’re gonna miss some shipping and other things.


[00:27:30] Now, we’ve talked a lot here. Is punching now about the automotive industry, the high tech industry. We’re a couple of those industries hit early on. And and, you know, a lot, lot, lot more news has come out about that. But we’ve also talked a lot about the ocean carriers. You know, there was a report and Wall Street Journal just last week. I think it was it will be a couple weeks old by the time this this podcast publishes. But five ocean carriers at the time are already letting their investors and other folks know that they’re there preparing profit warnings. Mm hmm. And not sure what the number is now, but about about halfway through February, if you looked at sailings out of China from the end of January 2020 to about mid-February, over 50 sailings had been canceled and some ships had left ports in China 10 percent full. So that’s basically insured. A loss for that company. Right. Even if they make a stop in in in North America, you know, on their way to Europe, whoever is still going to be a loss. And then, of course, what’s taking place, some of the build up in the ports. All right. Some of the the reefers that cannot get processed because labor is still just to get into these Chinese ports. A lot of labor, unfortunately, because there’s a lot of pain was been impacted. You know, it is really it’s just to spite the problem solving that is innate in the supply chain industry. And this is just been.


[00:29:03] A disaster. Yeah. And we were like working overtime to try and fix it, right. But they like to get a new supplier vetted. Chain trained. The you know, the quality established like we’re putting stuff on trucks we got to have. Right. We not gotta know what we’re doing and what the materials are. Takes a long time. And I think I think that. It’s easier than ever to build a really complex supply chain, and that is not necessarily a good thing.


[00:29:31] We know there was a new order in the article. I’m not sure where. I always like to give people credit, but it was basically questioning if if in the light, in light of what’s taking place these last two months plus if the globalization of supply chain is truly a good thing. Right. So we’ll see how that how that debate evolves over the next. You know, hopefully, hopefully we get some good news that we’ve started to contain, at least from a human element standpoint, you know, week, week, week. It’s like one day we get good news, the next day we get bad news. We’ll see where that goes. But certainly our thoughts and prayers are with the families that are impacted. Absolutely.


[00:30:06] All right. So it’s working a bit harder is not nearly as bad as as what they’re facing over there. So I agree with that completely. I want and I think that. Globalization supply chain you, is it a good thing? Is it a good thing all the time or is it a good thing in good times like you like. When is when is it a good thing? Right. And so I think we are taking another hard look at. We’ve ensured all our aluminum work. And I think that we will continue to look at building more and more in America and our product as is made. It is certified, made in American. So now you’re visiting Atlanta. What is home base for the company? So we have offices in Phenix and then the HQ in Redwood City. Okay. All right. But like modern companies, we got people all over working from home, working. We had a lot of zoo meetings. And, you know, get you know, we we one of things I like to do is empower people and let them let them do their work wherever they need to do it around their family commitments, other things. All right.


[00:31:06] So that I want to tell you one more curve ball over it, because I’d love to pick your brain on what I want to get back to. A couple of things we talk preshow in terms of some other global supply chain topics are kind, intriguing you. But a quick sidebar as a leader and CEO and founder of fastly growing startup early-stage Company. What have been some of your most critical lessons learned from a people and a team standpoint?


[00:31:36] You know, it’s how you learn continuously on this. And I think that it’s one of the fun things about a company is that, you know, somebody once got into trouble saying companies are people. And I think, like, you know, whatever you think about where they say, I should’ve been in trouble. I think, you know, the when you go to work, that’s what you see. You know, you don’t see the articles in Delaware and Corporation. That’s like Lu turns up on Monday. And who ends the e-mail when you called you? What do you care about the. And so it’s a it is all about people. And, um, and I think building that team align them around the vision of what we’re trying to do. Is is key. So what if I learned. I’ve learnt. I’ve learnt.


[00:32:23] Sounds like flexibility in terms of, you know, you mentioned empowering your workforce, kind of. We all work differently. Well. Worked successfully, inefficiently in many different ways. It sounds like that is something I could have is wrong. Sounds like that’s something your lead. You and your leadership team have been very intentional about allowing or empowering.


[00:32:43] Yeah, I mean, it helps us, right? Having people across the country be close to customers. And so in return gives and it gives our our our team more flexibility. And I’m great with that. I don’t I don’t care where you are at 10 o’clock on Tuesday. What I care about is on Friday is the work done and it is our people. Are we further long arm on our mission? And I think giving people back that power is a very humanizing thing that you can do to start. The other thing I’ve learned is how do you talk to somebody who’s in a big company, who’s thinking about going to a startup and doesn’t know whether or not to do it? And startup, you know, immediately has an emotional reaction of people they like risk, danger, alarm bells and talking about that and like how how they should think about that risk and that risk for the family and and whether that’s the right thing for them to do right now. And we’ve a lot of people who’ve joined us have joined have joined us from big companies where they had very safe, you know, career paths and. Right. They came for to find a faster personal growth path option to have a bigger impact. And what I say to them is, I don’t know why that startup goes. A lot of startups don’t make it. But if you gain skills and the started, the faster that you would not have gained elsewhere. Say, see, it all goes wrong. Say we say I’m wrong and this isn’t the right way.


[00:34:02] Things looking good right now, but say it’s just a very careful one to describe this. What I mean.


[00:34:09] You will get a you’ll get a better job. You’ll have more skills, you have more connections. You’ll have grown as a person because I was last year in a startup with four years in a big company like that.


[00:34:20] I might still that from you. And you know what? I’ve been asked a very similar question that I think it’s important. And I love to get you to weigh in. You know, startups aren’t for everybody. And that’s OK. We need people to to drive these corporations. We need people to to still farm and we need people to drive trucks and do all these other things that aren’t, you know, inherently startup ish. All right.


[00:34:42] It’s. It’s a bad idea. A lot of people, right? Yeah. You’ve got to find what’s right for you. And, you know, I always say I’ll just pitch the startups over and over. But you should do what you want. What makes what? But think about you know, you think about like what you know and and and think about why. What’s your why coming to work? What’s your wine?


[00:35:01] Love that. Simon Sinek has really popularized that. That what you’re why is. OK, so let’s let’s get back and thank you for for accommodating my curveballs and sandbars. It’s fascinating. I think it’s I think that as. FECT team, you’re kind of how you develop your your outlook on managing and hiring and nurturing. I think that’s just an intriguing part of early stage life. Startup life is Greg White would say, OK, let’s get back to some of the general trends across global supply chain that that are only Ryder more than others. What else what else is out that you’re tracking?


[00:35:40] So it’s it’s the other thing that I think is I’m seeing as a trend is. Is is is modern data science techniques that are changing how stuff is moving in a way that is tracked and part of everyday life. And so I’m I’m using words carefully here because I think, you know, a big data is like it’s all buzzworthy. And I think that what you see is for let’s take a very specific example, which is Truc Wings, that product. OK. Previously aerodynamic products, you would have tested it. You would put it out and you said, OK, you’re running roughly a hundred thousand miles per truck. This is your savings. That’s not good enough anymore. These fleets. They need to know what is that piece of equipment doing? So we had to build a telematics device called Carbon Connect, which tells us what is the state of the wing is open and shut. You know how many miles you’ve driven on that truck. This week we send our customers a report which is like truck A-B-C D, you ran 50 miles or 700 miles and you ran 92 percent open. And this so much fuel is saved and so many dollars is it. And that’s been such an important sales tool. And I think that’s new. I don’t think that people used to buy equipment and make supply chain decisions with real time data like where all our units are calling home every minute. And we report that databank and that data being embedded into decision making processes. And when we go to a sales meeting now, we know the first thing we do is we pull the data from the trucks and let them know how their assets are running and what whether what where problems are. And you wouldn’t necessarily expect like a flaps on a truck to have that kind of data back in.


[00:37:24] And that’s not I mean, I’m using that example to native to it, but it’s a cross. You’ve seen it all over and over and over where where where data is now cheap, that the cellular data is cheaper and you can actually get sensors. My friend Josh runs a company called APERIOD that does a really cool technology. It’s its wheel ends that as the wheel turns, it inflates the tire to the right pressure about it. It’s really cool. Yeah, that now has a connectivity component. Didn’t have for a while and now they can tell you exactly what. So I think I think, you know, you’re seeing that again and again. And I think that’s a trend that will only continue as people can digest more data and it’s useful data as well. I think I think it’s we don’t send a final point on this. We don’t send like all the data in a real format we send. Here are three trucks. I need attention. Here’s your top five truck savings and here’s your total savings the week. So in 30 seconds. Mm hmm. So they get a health check. Look at that dashboard. Dashboard. Yes, it is literate at Maureen. And they get a health check on their fleet and they get a they know where they where they spend their time and what’s working, what’s not working. And Rod, that is information overload. What you need to signals in the business. I think that the ability for even small companies like us to build that sort of stuff is based on, you know, we work on the bunch with a bunch of tools to put that together to deliver to customers in a way that would be impossible for a team of our size without funding before.


[00:38:47] I agree with you. And I hate to beat a dead horse, but I read this is dated. This is really stuck with me. It really is one of my early observances that illustrates well exactly what you’re talking about. So L.L.Bean thereby has had a lot of folks here in a stage. You might have had one hand L.L.Bean Bookbag growing up, right? Yeah, I have one. Suits or jackets or you name it, please. Yeah, that’s right. They could. This is a couple years old, but they incorporated sensors in their shoes and then I think it also in their jackets or something, one of the pullovers to see how it was being used. And in that is so fascinating to me because of the sheer amounts of shoes and jackets and being able to track that and have it communicate in a way that doesn’t. I think what’s key here, that doesn’t disrupt or decrease the customer’s experience or, you know, it doesn’t disrupt that. Right. Yeah. Wow. They it dry. It can drive. The data they’re collecting can drive innovation and better products. It’s just a fascinating data world we live in. Yeah, it is.


[00:40:00] And I think, you know, if you think about it before now, a lot of it was around can we collect the data, can we build the sensors? Can we get the data into a database? I just think more and more you’re seeing the data now coming back out of these databases and On2 onto or onto a weekly report dashboard or something where you can actually make decisions on it in a way that makes sense. It’s a it you know, it’s it’s a it’s a cliche to talk about. But I think you can point to a lot of specific examples of small companies delivering data products in a way that just a hardware like like a panels on a hot truck would not have done before.


[00:40:36] Agreed. I think also I could member 8, maybe 10 years ago when Big Data first became cliche. You know, I think one of the. Challenges at the time, and it’s OK now that I’ve got all this data and I paid all this money to accumulate it. What do we do now? That is no. I mean, you know, for four years now, for seven years now, to your point, companies are acting in a very meaningful and intentional and productive and effective way. All this data that’s accumulated. Well, eventually cliche becomes a truism. Think people talked about it a lot and then now they can talk about it. It’s just happening. Right. Right. For us. OK. Anything else? I want to say we talked about. Electric trucking. Appreciate it. Yeah. Any observations or anything that you want to share there that it’s at? I imagine it’s on your radar, but would you. What do you find fascinating about that?


[00:41:34] Well, so you’re seeing so trucking is has two sort of major trends going on right now where people are exploring alternative fuels, whether it’s natural gas, electric trucks or high LNG.


[00:41:50] And still a majority market, 98 percent is diesel. And then on the second one is autonomy.


[00:41:56] And so in a way, most got their autonomous trucks and there are other startups there. Both those trends, you know, are are super fascinating. And so electric trucks. Trucking is really important because it’s not so much about the cost per mile anymore. It’s about can you go 5 percent further? Can you can you put on batteries that are 5 percent less heavy? And so, you know, we that’s a really important thing. I think as we look at like where this is going, I don’t know how fast electric trucks will come. I mean, we see we see a lot of electric cars on the road, but still trucks go up further. Much harder to build that. But you’re seeing a knack fee north out. North American Council freight officially has this amazing initiative around electric trucks and people injured in that. Check that out.


[00:42:45] Yeah, I’d be great. May we concluded the Sheer? Yeah, we read the link from, you know, that I haven’t ever thought about from an electric trucking standpoint how solutions like which all have extends make it basically allows more deliveries or more, you know, driving distance or more miles, what have you. And I would imagine and I am a completely ignorant. So tell me if I’m way off base here. But I imagine with these these these large batteries, there’s aren’t they already had to be kind of conservative. So you don’t have a truck sitting there on the highways. There’s already some kind of safety net plug in. So when you’re talking about being able to extend that based on these savings, I mean, it can really make an impact quick.


[00:43:30] Yeah, no, it can. And it’s all about range anxiety on passing in our society.


[00:43:37] Range anxiety, right. I think that electric trucks hits its range. Terror. Yes. Because passenger cars, you can get to him from work if you’re a reasonable distance away with him with a passenger car.


[00:43:49] These truck drivers are driving, you know, the hours of service as much as they can. I don’t want to spend time recharging. They don’t want to spend time. They don’t want to get definite don’t get stranded and be towed.


[00:43:59] So I think it’s range terror, but they’re they’re getting there. You know, it’s it’s nice. And CNG technologies are fantastic. We just announced a partnership with a with Agility, the biggest CNG providers where our truck, which is now installed at factory for the ice Saraf. So for CNG trucks, compressed natural gas trucks, they, um. That’s it. That’s it. That’s that’s a many, many, many people think that that will has much more volume right now on electric. And people think that that’s going to be a bigger thing than electric for a.


[00:44:29] What a great partnership to kick off here. First quarter 2020.


[00:44:35] Yeah. Yeah, we’re excited. We just announced that. So we’re working hard and. And, you know, we’re just you know, one of the things that gets me up every day is that the that this whole industry is so vibrant, everything’s changing. And being part of that is a lot of fun. Mm hmm.


[00:44:54] Love it. I can tell you emanated if that’s a great thing.


[00:44:58] I apologize. Hopefully I didn’t get too much to do with you.


[00:45:02] I think, you know, entrepreneur, entrepreneur, start at the startup. I think that’s that it’s contagious. You know, and and I would imagine in your team meetings when you all huddle or you name it. I mean, I think that just is like a force multiplier. So I hope to have you come back own and give us an update maybe later this year. But but welcome to. Yeah. Enjoy your time in Atlanta. I think you’ve got a day or two. Sounds like you’re at a great event and had some, uh, some positive conversations, constructive conversation. So, Joy, how can let’s make sure before we we wrap up the interview here. How can folks learn more about Xtreme Trucking and also how can they connect with you?


[00:45:46] Yeah. So we are extreme trucking dot com. So when you pick a company name, entrepreneur, entrepreneur, it’s really important that when you say the name, people can type it in. Right. So you cannot type it in. What I’ve said. So we’re we’re we’re working on that but. Ah, but how are you? It’s a letter X stream is an Airstream. So s t r e a-m trucking dot com xstream trucking dot com. And there’s we have our Twitter handle and I link Dan and people can reach out to me through we. We check all those and they’ll find me online. Outstanding.


[00:46:24] Daniel, before Daniel Burrows, CEO and founder, Xtreme Trucking, really enjoyed the conversation. Appreciate your you know, when you sit down with many CEOs. Sometimes they can kind of be guarded, but really appreciate your kind of just genuine conversation, thoughts and the business thoughts and Industrial. I find it really refreshing. So appreciate your time here. Well, it’s been a wonderful conversation. Thanks so much. You bet it. All right. So to our audience, hopefully you’ve enjoyed this conversation with Daniel as much as I have. Be sure to check out our events and webinar tabs. Own Supply Chain Now Radio dot com. Got we have a variety of in-person and virtual events coming up with partners around the world from e30 Waters events to the Automotive Industry Action Group. George Logistics Summit Rasyid’s 360 MOAD X. And if you can’t find something you looking for if you have a question, shoot. Are CMO a note mandar at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com or much like XStream trucking? You can also hit us up on twitter at he can find me at at Scott W Lewton and I would love to engage their big thanks to our guests here today. Once again, Daniel Burrows, CEO and founder, Xtreme Trucking. Be sure to check out other upcoming events. Replays were interviews, other resources at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com fondness and subscribe wherever your podcast from onbehalf. Our entire team here Scott Luton wishing you a wonderful week ahead and we’ll see you next time on. So much now. Thanks everyone.

Daniel Burrows is the CEO and Founder of XStream Trucking. XStream Trucking is an engineering company building connected hardware to improve the efficiency of the $700 Billion trucking industry. Daniel’s mission is to generate fuel and maintenance savings to their customer’s bottom line while tackling harmful emissions.

Scott W. Luton is the founder & CEO of Supply Chain Now Radio. He has worked extensively in the end-to-end Supply Chain industry for more than 15 years, appearing in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Dice and Quality Progress Magazine. Scott was named a 2019 Pro to Know in Supply Chain by Supply & Demand Executive and a 2019 “Top 15 Supply Chain & Logistics Experts to Follow” by RateLinx. He founded the 2019 Atlanta Supply Chain Awards and also served on the 2018 Georgia Logistics Summit Executive Committee. He is a certified Lean Six Sigma Green Belt and holds the APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) credential. A Veteran of the United States Air Force, Scott volunteers on the Business Pillar for VETLANTA and has served on the boards for APICS Atlanta and the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. He also serves as an advisor with TalentStream, a leading recruiting & staffing firm based in the Southeast. Follow Scott Luton on Twitter at @ScottWLuton and learn more about SCNR here:

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