At the Work Truck Solutions Commercial Vehicle Business Summit in October 2023, a panel of three influential women in the commercial vehicle industry joined forces to discuss the sector's most pressing issues.
Moderated by Work Truck's Executive Editor, Lauren Fletcher, the session, titled "Growing Together," featured Jennifer Mitchell, Senior Director of Content Development for NTEA – the Work Truck Association, representing over 2,000 industry companies; Ann Brodette, SVP of Sales, Eastern Region for Mitsubishi HC Capital America, Inc., a commercial finance lending company specializing in Class 1-8 commercial vehicles and upfits; and Dania Rich-Spencer, VP Automotive & Mobility at Escalent, a data analytics and advisory firm.
The panel addressed the industry's challenges, including the imperative to adapt to new technologies, the significance of learning from failure, and the potential of artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance business performance. They underscored the importance of fostering a culture that encourages innovation and experimentation. They advised fleets to prioritize finding solutions that address genuine problems, rather than merely investing in technology for its novelty.
The panelists also emphasized the value of data analytics in streamlining operations and cutting costs, recognizing that larger corporations may enjoy advantages in terms of resources and scale. However, smaller enterprises can still profit from technological advancements. They stressed the importance of comprehending a business's unique requirements and obstacles when selecting technology solutions. They advocated for seeking out successful peers and networking to discover best practices.
A few of the key takeaways from the session included:
- Embrace failure as a necessary step in the innovation process.
- Encourage a culture of experimentation and curiosity within your organization.
- Focus on finding solutions that solve real problems, rather than simply investing in technology for its own sake.
- Leverage data analytics to optimize operations and reduce costs.
- Understand your business's specific needs and challenges when selecting technology solutions.
- Seek out successful peers and network to identify best practices.
- Be cautious but open-minded when considering new technologies like AI.
- Align technology solutions with your business objectives.
- Proactively educate yourself and your team on emerging technologies.
- Stay informed about regulatory changes and how they may impact your business.
To watch the whole discussion and find out more about why fleets need to learn to “fail fast,” check it out on YouTube!