HAVE FUN, BUILD A LEGACY: ASCEND TRANSPORTATION TAKES A NEW APPROACH


Post Date - May 12, 2022

At the beginning of the year, we not only relaunched under a new brand as Ascend, but we also wanted to rewrite the narrative on what a trucking company should look like. Our executive staff had the opportunity to go through a Franklin Covey trust session and take a look at what was important to us as an organization. What we came up with was a new approach to company values: have fun, build a legacy.

“When your company values are the same ones every year, sometimes there is a need for them to change or evolve,” says Rachel Lovell, our VP of people operations. “Building a unified team with one vision was a priority for us. We saw this as the opportunity to focus on what really matters to us and realign ourselves with our company culture.”

Having fun

As we thought about creating new company values and where we wanted the future of Ascend to take us, the idea of having fun became a recurring theme. No one wants a career you’re not excited about. We want to build an organization where we encourage individuals to have fun and enjoy the work they’re doing.

“When companies create their values, they go through the standard core values of safety, integrity, promote teamwork, excellence…all these things that are great values, but at Ascend, we want to be different,” explains Rachel. “We want to encourage having fun, celebrate each other’s wins and to give people the opportunity to be innovative.”

We’ve discovered that when we really take ownership of the idea of having fun, we’re providing a place where individuals can enjoy that work-life balance and feel comfortable in their roles here. This allows them to think outside the box, be innovative and have the confidence to share their ideas with us.

“We don’t want to do things a certain way because it’s how things have always been done,” Rachel adds. “We’re encouraging people to push back and take us in new directions.”

Building a legacy

The idea of building a legacy is putting the footprint on whatever it is you want the future to be and what you want to leave behind. Each person at Ascend contributes to that. It also can mean different things to different people, whether they’re planting a seed for their own legacy or playing a part of something we’re growing together.

As a company, we continue to push the limits - both with each other and in the industry - to approach trucking in a way that hasn’t been done before. We want to bring more individuals into the industry because their knowledge and skills are what we need to grow and evolve. Adding diversity allows for more innovation and different perspectives, which we believe is crucial to thriving in this space. In order to do that, we need to make the trucking industry a place where people want to be.

Take women in the industry, for example, since we recently celebrated International Women’s Day. Trucking has traditionally been a male-dominated field and in the past Ascend has also reflected that. In recent years, we’ve added more female leadership, managers and drivers, and we expect that our team will continue to set the standard for the future of trucking.

“People who are new to Ascend can see how we’re evolving to be the employer of choice and doing things differently than the norm,” Rachel says. “I can’t wait to see in the next five years how much we evolve and change.”

Rachel, who started working with us back in 2006, says she’s never been as excited about the future of trucking as she is right now.

“I’m so proud to be part of what we’re doing here at Ascend,” she says. “It’s important to see that we have the ability to impact the future of our industry.”

Our values, in action

The feedback from our team has been extremely positive and it’s been refreshing to see how people are really taking these values to heart. Our executive staff is leading by example. Instead of being a company where our values only live on the wall, we’ve included them on our badges so they’re something we’re reminded to do every single day.

“We’re seeing people enjoying their jobs, giving ideas back to the company, and feeling the freedom of being supported,” adds Rachel. “Whether it’s celebrating in someone’s win or ordering pizza for the team for National Pizza Day, we’re having fun.”

There are more plans for fun in the works, including driver and technician appreciation and more events to come this year.

“We’re truly building a legacy here by empowering the people who work with us and creating fulfilling experiences for them” Rachel says. “I can’t wait to see how they flourish.”

If you’re ready to approach trucking from a new perspective where having fun is a priority, we think you’d be the perfect fit. Get in touch with us today!