Hello, This is IINO.
This time I would like to talk about what I would do first, if I were a new forwarder.
IINO san’s forwarder career
First of all, I would like to give you a brief history of my career as a forwarder. I started working as a forwarder ten years ago.
It was an import operation for a foreign forwarder called Agility. Then I had a chance to work in Thailand. At that time, I joined a local freight forwarder as a sales representative.
Because of my good sales performance at the company in Thailand, I opened my current company with the owner of that company.
The company is now in its 5th term.
5 things if IINO san is new forwarder sales
Now, let me get to the point. What would I do if I were a new employee as a forwarder salesman? I’ll explain five points in the following paragraphs.
As a prerequisite, let’s assume that the company it is a small to medium-sized forwarder.
Study the basic rules about the industry anyway
The first thing to do is, to study the basic rules of the global logistics industry.
If you don’t understand the flow and rules of international logistics, you won’t be able to propose anything to the customer, and you may not even detect the customer’s problems.
Even if you’re a salesman, it doesn’t mean that you have to sell the space of sea shipment and air shipment. To sell the space, it related to the price the company offers to the customers.
As it is the space, getting a competitive price is not the new salesperson’s job. It’s more of an organizational task.
In addition, in the price war, you cannot win if the major companies are coming in.
That’s why the new salesperson should learn the basic rules of international logistics first, and increase the number of drawers for your proposals.
It is really important to acquire the basic knowledge to give appropriate answers to customers when they have some problem. And you can make better proposals than the current status.
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improve business ability
Let’s get back to the topic at hand.
The next thing to be aware of is to improve your operation skills. Even if you are a forwarder salesman, you have to do some operation for arranging the shipment.
The CS staff does all the logistics operation work for the customer. In other cases, the sales staff joins the operation work as well. It depends on the companies.
The reason why you need to have good operation skills even if you are an outside salesperson is related to the features of the international logistics job.
In international logistics, there are so many processes and documents involved in single transportation. So even one small mistake can stop the cargo and lead to a big problem.
Most importantly, you should avoid your own mistake as much as possible. And, if someone else makes a mistake, you need to support them to cover the mistake together.
If you are not good at operation work, you will make many mistakes and cause trouble for the whole team.
Even though you have many jobs, accuracy is more important than speed.
In my experience, I’ve seen many cases where the salesperson’s rough instructions or check have caused a lot of trouble for the operation staff.
In many cases like this, it causes a big fuss just before the cargo arrives because there are not necessary documents, some mistakes in the documents and lack of communication.
That’s why good operation skills will be required even for a salesperson.
Be willing to accept all jobs
The third point to be aware of is to accept all jobs willingly. There are so many different kinds of jobs in international logistics.
You may be confused at first as different regulations depending on the cargo and the region. However, as a newcomer, you have zero knowledge.
It is recommended that you experience various kinds of knowledge through many different types of jobs.
There are many things that you cannot understand until you experience them.
The amount of experience you have will affect your future job activities, so it is best not to “pick a job” from the beginning.
If the workload is beyond the scope of common sense, of course, you should refuse.
This does not mean that you should work at the expense of your own body but that you should not pick a job for your experience.
Don’t make enemies inside or outside the company
The fourth is “Don’t make enemies inside or outside the company.
When I was a new employee at a trading company, my boss once called me cocky, and I heard that I made many enemies in the company. If I started my carrier as a freight forwarder, I could not have success.
As I told you, international logistics work involves many processes and many people.
Teamwork is essential because you need the cooperation of many people to carry out a single job.
I think it’s mainly a problem if you don’t have a good relationship with the operation people. There may be an old-fashioned idea that salespeople just get the new job, but forwarders are not the case.
In the case of forwarders, the salesperson and operation person have just different roles and tasks.
Well, this is the same in other industries, but especially in the case of forwarders, I think it’s really important to coordinate sales and operations.
If you achieve some good results, you may think of it as “your own ability”, but keep in mind that it’s all because of the support of your team.
The last one is “learn English.”
It is said that English is important in other industries as well, but it is no exaggeration to say that in a forwarder’s job, English ability is the default.
This job involves communicating with people in your country and other countries, to transport cargo.
Emails will be in English, of course. If you are a salesperson, you may have to call people overseas or go overseas.
As I have told you many times, teamwork is important in a forwarder’s job.
This is a job that requires cooperation with the people who live all over the world, including foreign agencies and branches.
Now let’s summarize today’s content. In international logistics, there are so many documents, so many processes, and so many people involved in just one shipment.
If I were a new salesperson at a forwarder, I would keep these things in mind as follow.
1.Study the basic rules of the industry.
2.Improve operation skills.
3.Accept all jobs willingly.
4.Do not make enemies inside or outside the company.
When I understand the characteristics of a forwarder’s job, I think these are five issues to achieve at first.
You can learn about the basic rules of logistics in this channel. So if you haven’t subscribed yet, please do so after this video.
As you can see, when you have a clear idea of what you need to do, you can focus on it without thinking about unnecessary things, and it will speed up your approach to your goal.
I hope this will be helpful to newcomers working as forwarders.
That’s all for this time. Thank you very much!
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