When people think of moving, often the first emotion they feel is dread. It’s tough to do it right, and you worry about the possibility of valuable belongings being broken by those who want to get the job over and done with. However, with the right team and properly spec’d vehicles, that doesn’t have to be the case.
Shayne Kent, general manager of Good Greek Moving and Storage’s Tampa, Florida, location, understands that behind every successful move are the right employees using the appropriate trucks to enhance safety and customer service.
Putting the ‘Good’ in Good Greek
The company started a little over six years ago by Spero Georgedakis and John Osorio. Before breaking into the moving industry, Georgedakis was part of the North Miami Beach Police SWAT team.
This experience instilled in him honesty, trust, and loyalty, which easily transferred over to his new business endeavor. It also inspired his attitude toward hiring — you don’t always need to hire the most skilled and experienced movers; they just have to be good human beings with a respectable heart and genuine intentions.
Kent came aboard almost three years ago and knew Georgedakis and Osorio from a previous moving organization. After helping open West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale offices, he’s working on expanding into Tampa.
Now, Good Greek handles every aspect of the relocation process, including packing and unpacking, junk removal, turning utilities on and off, and many other services to ensure a seamless transition for its customers. The business also does vehicle transport and has even started its own real estate branch.
Transporting Precious Cargo
Good Greek runs a fleet of about 140 vehicles, consisting of heavy-duty household good moving trucks; medium-duty junk removal trucks and cargo vans, which are used for packing services; and light-duty sales vehicles.
Nothing in the fleet is older than a 2018-MY unit, and the company takes great care in selecting specific box types for its trucks.
“Dealing with household goods is different than freight services. We need a box design that allows us to maximize capacity to accommodate furniture. On top of that, ease of access is another key point to consider. We’ve spec’d our vehicles with barn doors, curbside doors, and a double-wide opening door that enables us to, if there’s no driveway, put a walk board to the side and unload through the side of the truck,” Kent explained.
The business uses a third-party mechanic service for onsite repairs and maintenance. Having dedicated technicians that routinely service its trucks has bread familiarity with the vehicles, which enables them to know exactly what is wrong, what to look for, and how often to check to ensure trucks are running as smoothly as possible and not in a susceptible position before going over the road.
Before a truck is dispatched, drivers conduct a pre-inspection report. They check fluid levels, tire tread depth, and make sure all lights are operable. The general condition of the truck is also noted, and the contents of the trucks are properly secured.
Building an Empire
Good Greek is constantly expanding by gaining new sponsorships and affiliates. A recent highlight for the business has been being selected as the official mover of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The company is also the “official mover” of other professional sports teams and organizations including the Miami HEAT, Miami Marlins, Florida Panthers, University of Miami Hurricanes, Inter Miami CF, and University of Florida Gators football team.
Kent said getting to move the Buccaneers for the 2021 Super Bowl was fun and a once-in-a-lifetime experience that felt electric. The company had a custom-wrapped tractor-trailer present at the event with its logo and photo of the football team on the side. “It was a huge accomplishment for our team,” he said.
A large part of enhancing efficiency lies in cost analysis for Good Greek. One area of focus has been fuel consumption. The company has contracted with Diesel Direct instead of relying solely on its drivers using fuel cards. This has saved ample time because drivers no longer have to factor in traffic for fueling stops when they’re on or between jobs.
“Diesel Direct comes to our locations and fuels our trucks in the middle of the night, which is when we have the most trucks present in the yard,” Kent said. “Each truck has a bar-coded sticker, so Diesel Direct knows it’s one of the vehicles included in the program. They’ll give us a ticket each night when they stop by with a synopsis in terms of what trucks were fueled and how much they were fueled so we can monitor that.”
Good Greek also uses Samsara to monitor and track speed, fluid levels, and more of its assets. In-cab cameras enable managers to keep an eye on drivers to make sure they are properly abiding by the rules of the road and company procedures.
Staying Strong Through the Pandemic
Deemed an essential business from the beginning of the pandemic, COVID-19 didn’t impact the operation significantly in terms of slowing productivity down. One area it did affect was its ability to create storage space. Each of Good Greek’s locations has an onsite warehouse to store customers’ belongings, and lumber shortages caused the company to get creative.
“There’s been an enormous demand, and prices have spiked. It’s been a bit of a challenge for us to keep up with our growth. The need for storage vaults has really driven us to have to dig deep and think outside the box a little in terms of how to overcome it. Thankfully we have mechanically inclined gentlemen working for us who aren’t just movers, so we’ve started to build these vaults from the ground up,” Kent said.
Going and Growing
Kent said something he enjoys about what he does is how he’s constantly challenged and gets to strengthen his ability to overcome adversity.
“It keeps me focused and engaged. I feel trials build character and a sense of purpose. I welcome chaos, occasionally,” he said.
His advice for others in the vocational fleet world is don’t be afraid to think outside the box and exercise ingenuity in terms of developing more services to offer.
“Don’t be too rigid; move with the times and make technological advancements work for you. Sometimes it can be overwhelming, but in the long run, it’s worth the time and effort. Everything evolves and adapting rather than resisting is the only way to grow,” he stated.