President & Owner of Cargo Quotes
Kevin Brandes, a distinguished figure in the logistics industry, serves as the President and Owner of Cargo Quotes, a company renowned for its innovative approach in freight and cargo management. With a degree from Missouri State University, Brandes has carved out a unique position in the business world, not merely as an entrepreneur but as a trailblazer spearheading industry-wide change and innovation. His career is a testament to an entrepreneurial spirit fueled by a keen eye for pioneering opportunities, which has led him to significantly impact various sectors and inspire a new generation of business leaders.
Under Brandes’ visionary leadership, Cargo Quotes has become a byword for innovation in logistics. His approach, characterized by a forward-thinking mindset, has successfully harnessed technological advancements and sustainable practices. Brandes’ commitment to integrating Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) into logistics underscores his dedication to enhancing efficiency, safety, and eco-friendliness in the industry. This focus is not simply a business strategy; it is a proactive response to global environmental challenges, positioning Cargo Quotes as a leader in green logistics.
Brandes is celebrated for his dynamic approach to business, adeptly balancing ambitious professional goals with a commitment to personal well-being. This balance makes him a role model in the demanding world of entrepreneurship. As a thought leader, he continues to shape the logistics industry, advocating for advanced technology and sustainable practices, thus defining the future of cargo freight in the 21st century.
What is your typical day, and how do you make it productive?
My typical day starts early with a review of the latest logistics trends and a quick catch-up on global market news. I spend a significant amount of time strategizing with my team, ensuring our operations align with Cargo Quotes’ vision. Productivity for me comes from prioritizing tasks and maintaining a clear focus on our company’s short-term and long-term goals.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Ideas are brought to life through collaboration. At Cargo Quotes, we have a culture of open communication where ideas are shared and refined. I also believe in leveraging technology to test and implement new concepts, ensuring our ideas are not only innovative but also viable and efficient.
What’s one trend that excites you?
The integration of AI in logistics excites me. The potential for AI to optimize supply chains, enhance predictive analytics, and improve overall efficiency is immense and transformative for our industry.
What is one habit that helps you be productive?
Staying organized is key. I maintain a structured schedule, which helps me manage my time effectively. This ensures that I am always focused on tasks that align with our company’s strategic objectives.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would advise my younger self to embrace risk more readily. The logistics industry is dynamic, and sometimes taking calculated risks can lead to significant advancements and learning opportunities.
Tell us something you believe that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I believe that logistics companies should prioritize sustainability over short-term profitability. While this view is gaining traction, it’s still not a universally accepted approach in our industry.
What is the one thing you repeatedly do and recommend everyone else do?
Continuous learning. The world is constantly evolving, and staying informed and educated is crucial. I regularly read industry journals, attend seminars, and engage with other leaders to keep my knowledge up-to-date.
When you feel overwhelmed or unfocused, what do you do?
I take a step back and go for a walk or meditate. Clearing my mind helps me regain focus and approach challenges with a fresh perspective.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business or advance in your career? Please explain how.
Building strong relationships within the industry has been instrumental. Networking and collaborating with other professionals have opened doors and provided insights that have been crucial for both business growth and personal career advancement.
What is one failure in your career, how did you overcome it, and what lessons did you take away from it?
Early in my career, I underestimated the importance of a diversified supply chain, which led to significant challenges during a market downturn. I overcame this by broadening our supplier base and now always emphasize the importance of not putting all eggs in one basket.
What is one business idea you’re willing to give away to our readers?
An online platform that connects small logistics businesses for resource sharing could revolutionize the industry, especially for those struggling with scalability.
What is one piece of software that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
Project management software, like Asana, is invaluable. It helps me track project progress, set deadlines, and ensure that my team is aligned and accountable.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why? (personal or professional)
I recently spent $100 on a set of ergonomic office tools. Investing in a comfortable and efficient workspace is crucial for productivity and well-being.
Do you have a favorite book or podcast (or both) from which you’ve gotten much value, and why?
I enjoy the book “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries. Its principles of agile development and lean management have been highly applicable and valuable in the logistics industry.
What’s a movie or series you recently enjoyed and why?
I recently enjoyed watching “The Martian.” It’s a great reminder of human ingenuity, resilience, and the power of problem-solving under pressure – all relevant themes in the logistics world.