Entrepreneur Spotlight – Ted Alling of Access America Transport

SBR is about sharing secrets to success as an entrepreneur, but just as important is  learning the mistakes to avoid.

A survey released this week by Small Business Insurer Hiscox revealed the Top

Entrepreneur Spotlight - Ted Alling

Ted Alling shares his secrets to Success

4 biggest mistakes made by START UP businesses were:

1. Underestimating monthly expenses
2. Hiring the wrong people.
3. Not knowing how to market and sell your products
4. Not securing enough financing.

These Small Businesses owners also underestimated the challenges of Taxes, Accessing Credit and Managing People.

The BIG learning lesson from this comes down to proper business planning. You must have a solid business plan and YOU must also have Mentors helping you with your plan and helping to validate your business model.

It amazes me how many small businesses don’t have a Plan and don’t leverage Mentors who are willing to provide their time and expertise, which would costs tens of thousands if you hired a consultant.  If you don’t have a mentor make a list of your most relevant contacts today and write down a few KEY attributes for each one and prioritize this to a Top 3 list.

Call them up and ask for a Face -to-Face meeting and tell them you are looking for a mentor to help you with your business plan.  I highly advise finding mentors in your local area that you can meet Face-to-Face.  I assure you that at LEAST one of these folks will agree to mentor you and you may end up with several.  Its also very important to schedule a confirmed time to meet on a regular basis as this establishes accountability for both of you.

Today our guest is an entrepreneur that has experienced remarkable success, but has remained very humble and he has a passion for giving back to his community and helping others succeed.  We will learn how this entrepreneur and his Co-Founder started a logistics company and grew it from ground zero to a $100 million a year business in under 8 years.  We will learn how this entrepreneur became a major player in the transportation business without owning any trucks and how he pioneered the use of technology in his industry.

Our guest today is Ted Alling, the Co-Founder and CEO of Access America Transport a Chattanooga TN based transportation company with annual sales of $100 million, 4,000 customers, 150 employees and 7 offices located throughout North America.

Access America has been named the Best Employer in Tennessee for three consecutive years and was named the 2010 Business of the year by the Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce.  Last year the Company was also recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of America’s Fastest growing companies with three year growth of 619%.  I had the pleasure of getting to know Ted recently was impressed with humility and willing to help others succeed.  I noticed things like Ted parking his car at the very back of the parking lot so customers and employees can have the best spots.  I enjoyed his energy and drive and look forward to you listening to this interview and providing you feedback on our blog.  Thanks for tuning in.

Click the Player below to here this interview in its entirety:

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John Martin – Host of Small Business Roundtable

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