Ask anyone what makes Arrive a special place to work at and the answer will be the same – the people! We sat down with Tori Howard, Senior Business Development Service Manager, to learn more about her role at Arrive, what she likes to do outside of the office and why she loves being part of the team.
How did you get to Arrive?
I’m the Senior Business Development Manager for Kyle Kristoferson’s team. I’ve been working at Arrive for just more than three and a half years. I first found Arrive through Mike Becker. He was the first person I worked for in Austin and the reason I moved from Alaska. I’m from Anchorage, Alaska and haven’t lived anywhere else other than Alaska and Texas. The transition was pretty smooth; I have some family in Austin, and they helped the transition. It’s funny because Alaska and Texas are somewhat similar with the big state, but small community vibe and the one-sided weather. Alaska is always cold. Texas is always hot. For me, the biggest culture shock was how dark Austin is compared to Alaska during the summer. It’s essentially dark out around 7-8 p.m. here and doesn’t get dusky until after midnight during the summer in Alaska.
What does your workday look like?
On a daily basis, I help manage the smaller accounts for Kyle’s team, but I can help with the larger accounts. I’m sort of the go-to person to communicate with the customers as well as our reps. When I first got here, we had to build customer relationships, build and schedule loads, set up carriers and book our own freight. At that time both our team and Arrive were a lot smaller, and everyone was responsible for much more. This definitely helped me get to the comfort level I’m at now by allowing me to experience more sides of the business. My days have changed a good amount while transitioning to remote work; I’ve been able to do a lot of accounting and organizational work for the team. I’m not nearly as hands-on as I used to be.
What do you like to do outside of work?
I love to go hiking, especially back in Alaska where I can embrace the nature around me. Before COVID-19, going to restaurants and concerts were some of my favorite things to do in Austin. There’s no better place for good food and even better music. While I haven’t completely halted my restaurant intake, I’ve been very safe. I even found a drive-in concert to go to which was super cool. Although nothing is the same as it was pre-COVID, Austin’s culture is still alive and well.
What logistics experience did you have before Arrive?
My first experience in logistics was an internship I had in Anchorage. I was able to see how all the modes of transportation work together to get freight from all over up to Alaska. I was excited to see how something went from truck, barge, rail and sometimes air, just to bring food up. Not to mention some of the massive pieces or freight that needed to go up to the North Slope for the oil fields. How do you get something so big up the mountain? It made me really enjoy working on projects from start to finish and seeing the whole process. However, I wanted to learn so much more.
What advice do you have for someone new to logistics?
Don’t worry about missing one load or making mistakes along the way. We aren’t heart surgeons and are just moving freight. The way we learn in this industry is by failing and learning from our mistakes. Our job is to communicate and control what we can control. It took me some time to learn that. Take your time and keep your head up because everything you learn at Arrive you will be able to use later on in life.
What keeps you at Arrive ?
Easy, it’s the people. When I first moved to Austin I fell in love with the area, and I met almost all my best friends through Arrive, so the people are the best part by far. Other than that, this job challenges me on a daily basis and that’s something that I need in a job to keep me interested and motivated.