Spotlight on Midwest Regional Manager Cole Boren
Cole Boren’s career path shows that for people who maintain our nation’s trucking fleets, there can be some very good opportunities for professional advancement. Now the Midwest Regional Manager at Iron Maintenance, Cole started in the field twenty years ago, when he got a job in a body shop repairing damage to tractors. At the time, he had hoped to become a diesel technician and had just completed a two-year training program for that job. Today, diesel technicians are one of the most sought-after workers in the industry, but back then, there were very few openings. The body shop turned out to be a good fit for him, and he spent the next 3 years there, taking on additional responsibilities and eventually becoming the shop’s equipment manager.
Cole’s strong work background, broad skill set, and growing industry knowledge led to other opportunities. After some time as a shop manager in Illinois, he found himself back in his home state of Utah, working as the shop manager at Knight Transportation before moving to Swift as the area service leader for the Refrigeration Division. It was there where he met the Senior Vice President of Iron Maintenance, Justin Taylor, who recruited him for his current position. Cole loves the fact that all of his work opportunities have pushed him to learn new skills, and Iron Maintenance is no exception. Until joining the company, he had never worked in retail. A strong believer that he must be able to do whatever type of work he’s asking of others, Cole is now undergoing a self-directed crash course in how to promote Iron Maintenance to independent drivers and small trucking companies. During his first months on the job, he has gone to drop lots and truck stops, reaching out to drivers to tell them about the services and to find out about their needs. While he was a little nervous at first, drivers have been receptive of his message and appreciative of the personal outreach.
Cole views Iron Maintenance as an excellent place to start a transportation career, and knows that the company shares his belief in fostering professional opportunities for its workers. In his current position, he is looking at how to elevate promising workers to leadership positions, and to encourage the managers below him to do the same. Iron has a big enough network to accommodate a career path like his, offers good benefits, and sees the value of hiring internally. It is also a fast-growing company, which is always an exciting place to work.
From his outreach and his work with the maintenance shops, it is clear to Cole that drivers want exactly what Iron Maintenance has set out to give them—clear communications, speedy service so they can get back on the road quickly, and reassurance that they aren’t overpaying for parts or services. As for his biggest job challenge? Hiring enough diesel technicians!