Giving Back

A lot of people talk about how culture is built with coworkers over happy hours and ping pong tournaments, but that really isn’t true. Culture is built in the everyday – when coworkers support each other, and also when they give back together.

Our team had the opportunity to volunteer with the Ronald McDonald House here in Cincinnati last week, preparing a meal for the families staying at the house.

The Ronald McDonald House gives families with children attending Cincinnati Children’s Hospital a place to stay – free of charge. No family is ever turned away because they can’t afford to stay. It really gives these families an incredible peace of mind because they don’t have to worry about finding somewhere to stay or knowing where their next meal is coming from.

Our team got a tour of the house and then got to work preparing dinner.

The menu is planned out ahead of time, and a sous chef helps you through the process of pulling everything together. We were shown how to prepare different foods that we may not have cooked or cut ourselves before. We then served the families, enjoyed the food ourselves, and cleaned up the kitchen afterwards.

 

It was such a great experience to interact with the families and see the direct impact that you were able to have. Being able to prepare the meal alongside your work team while getting to know them on a deeper level just added to the experience.

What are you doing this holiday season to give back?


By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Onboarding

6 Things We’re Thankful For

As we enter the holiday season, we’re reminded to take a pause and think about the things we’re thankful for and the things that truly matter. This year, we have many things to be grateful for – as we’ve continued our trend of another record year. We’re ending 2018 with our highest year of revenue and the most full-time employees on our team that we’ve ever had.

We’re especially thankful for….

1. Our Team

Any organization is really only as strong as the people that make up the team. We work every day to make sure we’re inviting the right people to join our team and take us to the next level. Two of our Elite Logistics Advisors made company history by reaching 6-figure margin months this year. They didn’t do it alone though – they had operational support from their direct team (which grew this year due to their success), encouragement from the rest of the Bridge family, and assistance invoicing those shipments from our billing department. You can’t succeed here alone – it takes a tribe. Thankfully, our team members are always willing to help and support each other during both the wins and the losses.

2. Our Customers

Building relationships is at the forefront of everything we do – but that doesn’t just end with our team. We pride ourselves on building relationships with our customers as well – relationships built on a mutual level of respect. We communicate with our customers not just when things are going good. Anyone can do this job when things are going well, but how we handle the difficult situations is really what sets us apart.

3. Carriers & Drivers

Being a broker, we couldn’t do what we do without the carriers and drivers who physically haul our customers’ freight. We put guidelines in place to make sure we’re loading high quality carriers, and our relationship with them is just as important as the relationship we have with our customers. We have carriers that we’ve worked with for years who are familiar with our business and love to haul our loads because they know we are also going to treat them with respect and communicate with them even when something is going wrong.

4. Cincinnati, OH

We’re also thankful for the city that our headquarters – and most of our team – call home! Cincinnati is #2 on Smart Asset’s Top Cities for College Grads, #10 on Livability’s Best Affordable Places to Live, and #9 on Forbes’s Best Cities for Raising a Family. We’re thankful for everything the city has to offer while still being an affordable place to live.

5. Mansfield, OH

In addition to Cincinnati, we’re also thankful for the city of Mansfield, OH – which is home to our second location. Mansfield really embodies a small, Midwestern town. The downtown streets are paved with brick, the bartender at the local brewery is going to get to know you on a first name basis, and it’s an extremely affordable city not far from both Columbus and Cleveland.

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6. Growth

We are always focused on growth. And while financial growth is clearly important, it’s not the only thing we focus on. We want our team members to grow – both professionally and personally. We do this by learning about the personal goals our team members have, and then aligning them with their work goals so they’re able to achieve everything they want. We also want our team to grow and expand by inviting additional top talent to join us. We find that when we focus on building up our team, financial growth naturally follows.

We’re looking forward to an exciting end to 2018 that will continue to focus on the things we’re thankful for. What are you most grateful for this holiday season?


By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Development

What is YOUR Passion?

What are you passionate about? What’s something that you absolutely love to do? Why do you love that?

These are questions that we ask every person who comes in for a face-to-face interview with us. Very rarely do we get an answer that’s job-related. And you know what, that’s perfectly okay.

People are passionate about family, community involvement, caring for rescue dogs, or coaching sports teams. Hardly anyone, or maybe even no one, will say that logistics is their main passion. That doesn’t mean that people don’t enjoy working in logistics, but people aren’t usually passionate about coordinating trucks to move 40,000 pounds of egg cartons around the US.

Your job itself doesn’t have to be your main passion. But you do need a job that fuels into your passion and allows you to pursue what you love to do, even if that’s outside of work.

What’s the point of spending all of your time at a job that isn’t your main passion if you then don’t have time to do what you love when you leave the office?

Don’t be afraid to ask in an interview what the company does to fuel into their employees’ passions. If they are taken off-guard by that question, then that should be a red flag to you that they don’t place an emphasis on getting to know their employees on a personal level. Can they tell you what their team members are passionate about and what fuels them?

Personally, I love that I work in an environment at Bridge where my coworkers know what I’m passionate about and that I’m encouraged to pursue that. I love traveling. Getting out of town and exploring new places is my favorite. I’m given flexibility to take half days occasionally for a weekend getaway. Taking PTO time is encouraged, which allows me to go on trips farther away, exploring new states and countries.

But I also really appreciate that my job gives me the opportunity to go out of town and explore other places that I wouldn’t otherwise get a chance to see. While visiting college campuses in Ohio and Kentucky isn’t exactly the same as hopping a flight to Paris for a week, it still fuels into what I’m really passionate about, which is getting to see and experience a new place while meeting new people.

Figure out what fuels you and how your job can help build into that. Your daily job responsibilities may not be constantly fueling that passion, but you should be in a position that allows you to pursue it more often than not. If your job leaves you with no time to do what you love, then it’s probably not the right one for you.

Everyone’s passions are different, but make sure at the end of the day, you’re working at a company that is going to support whatever it is you love to do. There are companies out there that care about you as an individual, and you deserve to work for one.


By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Onboarding

“It’s the People.”

Being involved in all of our face-to-face interviews, one of the most common questions I get asked is “what is your favorite part about working at Bridge?”

And that might just be the easiest question I ever have to answer in my job because I always answer it the same way: it’s the people.

Growing up, I thought that work was a necessary evil, and if you’re lucky you’ll like your job and tolerate the people you work with. You’ll see them every day during work hours, but then you have a completely separate personal life outside of work.

I worked in an office environment during my first few years of college where I passed people’s desks every single day, but I never knew some of their names. People didn’t go out of their way to get to know you, and most people listened to music through headphones at their desk – closing themselves off from the possibility of any conversations. I started to assume that all work environments would be like that.

So I was shocked to find that I was completely wrong when I started working at Bridge. Granted, we’re a small company with around 50 employees, but I know everyone on a personal level. Everyone gets thrilled every time our summer volleyball league rolls around and we get to spend a couple extra hours together after work every week – even though we never win a game.

I’ve made some really close friends here – some of whom don’t even work here anymore. I think it says a lot about our company and culture that it is so common for people to form close relationships that often span moving on to different companies and opportunities. And it says a lot to work with people for 40 hours and then want to spend time with them outside of work on the weekends as well.

I know we’re not the only company with so many of our teammates being friends outside of work, but I also know that not everywhere has that type of environment. I’ve had friends who work for other companies tell me that they wish they worked at a company where everyone was so close like we are at Bridge.

The people we have working at Bridge are supportive. They tell you you’re doing a great job even when you’ve had a rough day and feel like you aren’t. They send emails out congratulating team members for hitting goals. They push you out of your comfort zone when they know it’s going to be a good learning opportunity for you. But maybe most importantly? The people I work with every day are hysterical.

I’m a big believer that it’s important to like your job and what you’re doing, but I think it’s just as important to like the people you work with. Thankful that I get to have that at Bridge.


By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Onboarding

4 Benefits of Working for a Small Company

There are pros and cons to working at both big and small companies. A lot of people are attracted to the brand recognition element of working for a large company. Working for a company that most people are familiar with definitely has its perks and can sound really impressive. But being a small company ourselves, we think there’s a lot to be said about working for a lesser-known company.

98% of companies in the US have less than 100 employees, according to Business Insider. Considering we fall into that 98% category, we’re a bit partial to the small company.

Here’s just 4 reasons why we think working for a small company is the way to go.

You’re given more responsibility and a broader job description.

With less people on the team and a tighter budget than a Fortune 500 company, you’re often wearing multiple hats when you work for a small company. You may be given responsibility across multiple departments. Or you could be the only person in your department, leaving all the important decisions up to you. Regardless, you get exposure to all areas of the business that would be much harder to get in a big company.

You don’t have to go through a lot of hierarchy to make big changes happen.

Most small companies aren’t going to have that traditional hierarchical corporate structure with layers and layers of people reporting to each other. There’s simply not enough people in a small company for that to even be possible. Instead, they often have a more flat organizational structure, with just a few different levels.

The benefit of this is that you don’t have to get approval from a ton of people for a new idea or initiative to be put in place. If there’s only one or two levels in the company, that means you don’t have to wait forever to get feedback on something, and the ultimate decision makers are either yourself or the people you sit next to at work on a daily basis.

The impact you make to the organization is extremely visible and is felt across the company.

When you have a lot of responsibility in a company, it’s easy to see how you’re making a contribution. Our teammates have an impact on our bottom line the first week that they start with us. They can very quickly see how their job is important and how it helps the company be successful.

If you work for a large company, you may be isolated in one department where your work is passed on to someone else, and you never see how it contributes to the greater good of the organization. In a small company, it’s impossible to get isolated in your own department.

Everybody knows your name.

So this isn’t Cheers, but everybody still knows your name. You’re not “just a number” if you work for a small company. You get to know everyone from the CEO to the newest of hire on a personal basis. The people you work with are oftentimes the people you see and interact with the most. We’ve heard people come in for interviews who tell us that they work in an environment where they see the same people everyday, but they never speak to them or even know their name. That environment couldn’t be further from our reality and the reality of most small companies. You start to feel more like a family than a group of people that just work together when you’re in a small team environment.

Overall, there are definitely benefits and drawbacks to any work environment. But the responsibility, opportunity for growth, and impact you can make in a small organization, even just starting out in an entry-level position is tremendous. And while we may be a bit biased, we think everyone should work for a small company at some point in their career.


By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Onboarding

More Than Just a Ping-Pong Table: The Bridge Logistics Culture

Corporate culture. Probably one of the biggest buzzwords in business these days. A search on Google alone brings back around 4,840,000 results with article after article on cultivating a strong corporate culture and finding the right one for you.

We hear it again and again in interviews and on college campuses. Individuals are using a company’s culture to decide which job opportunity to pursue now more than ever.

But what exactly makes a culture?

Oftentimes, people have a tendency to discuss corporate culture in terms of all the “fun” things that happen around an office. We’re guilty of it ourselves from time to time. Things like…

We host an annual Christmas party at a hotel downtown every year.

 

We participate in a summer volleyball league.

 

We have a ping-pong table in the back of our office.

 

But honestly, at the end of the day, a ping-pong table doesn’t make or break a corporation’s culture. No one goes to work excited in the morning because their company has an epic party once a year in December. And you can join plenty of summer volleyball leagues without even being employed.

Instead, the culture of a company is made of the people who work there. It’s about the values they hold and the things that are important to them….things like building relationships with others, constantly supporting your team, and striving to always be better than you were yesterday. These are reasons to wake up every day excited to go to work.

Here at Bridge, we absolutely like to have a good time and see each other outside of work. But we know that none of those “fun” things carry any weight if we don’t support each other from 8:00-5:00 every day. So to us, culture is things like…..

Veteran employees always being willing to assist our newest team members with any questions they have.

 

Getting to know every member of our staff on a personal basis – from the ownership level to the newest of hires.

 

Supporting wins like crushing a sales contest with a flood of congratulatory company-wide emails.

 

A supportive environment where it’s safe – and even encouraged – to fail, where there are plenty of people around to pick you back up when you fall, is ultimately the culture we’re continually working to cultivate here.

The ping-pong tournaments on Friday afternoons just happen to be a nice perk.


By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Onboarding