Bill Creason

Interview by
Published on
November 10, 2022

In this episode...

Truck Dispatchers work in a very challenging but highly rewarding environment. At times, dispatches change and can go in a different direction than originally planned. This is why it is important to maintain a level of flexibility and adaptability within the role. A good dispatcher must be able to coordinate trip schedules, manage routes, and handle calls and requests from drivers, operators, and vendors. They must make decisions confidently and have the knowledge to support them. There are also times when a dispatcher finds the need to go above and beyond their duty. Dispatchers deal with human beings with real emotions - and it is important that they connect on a personal level, especially with drivers who are the ones that go through many challenges both on the road and in real life. FreightWorks’ 2nd Shift Dispatcher Bill Creason knows it’s important as a dispatcher to know when to talk business and when to offer an open line for their personal concerns.

Bill Creason

Bill Creason is one of FreightWorks's 2nd shift dispatcher


If a driver calls in and he's on the edge and he's he's really stressed and he's won the verge of being very very frustrated if I can speak to him the right thing and help him with their situation and get them calmed down then I'm doing my job welcome to Mike for the mile delivered by freightworks one of America's fastest growing podcasts actually produced by trucking companies compelling drivers scores I need to do something big incite all here right now it's like for the mile delivered by freightworks I'm your host Butch malpe I have looked forward to being was not just a guest but with a dear friend and I'm going to say this brother in the Lord here on this podcast and you know what we want to say this real quickly if you've not subscribed to this channel make sure you subscribe like share engage it's the way we grow the audience and we want to do that so we can tell not just the freightwork story but the incredible stories of drivers and those who support them so Bill creason my friend I'm so grateful that you're here today it's great to be here Butch you know and uh you got your freightwork shirt on you're you are in dispatch and you're on the second shift yes yeah and you know what I I'd love to learn I went and looked in the dictionary to remember again what the word dispatch means okay and it's a transitive verb and it means to relegate to a specific destination or send on specific business the synonym is to send to complete transact or dispose of promptly so that's what the dictionary says what do you say what do you do well there's a lot of different things that can take place from the time you get in that chair until midnight it's one of the first things that I do is check the reefers um so we tell people what a reefer is reefer is a refrigerated load and we Haul refrigerated Hazmat we Haul produce and so those reefers got to be set on the right temperature so the first thing I do is when I come in on my shift is I go through all the orders and I make sure that the reefers that have picked up their loads are set to the proper temperature and are running correctly okay and oftentimes there may be a discrepancy and so I like the temperatures off the temperature's off a degree or maybe it's 10 degrees it just depends on what the customer wants versus what the bill of lading says it needs to be and what the shipper's telling the driver to put it on okay so oftentimes I'll come in and there may be a discrepancy there and when I discover that then I've got to get on the on the phone with the customer and say hey this is what the bill of lading says the reefer temperature needs to be and this is what your order says what is the correct transport temperature for this load okay all right so you you've gotta you've got to be making a lot of quick decisions don't you yes yeah because time is not really your friend no and the customers have expectations yes and the drivers have expectations that they want to keep rolling and little things like the temperature being all five or six or seven degrees can mean the difference between a load that's okay and it load that's damaged right yes and then that's that's where my heart has been I have really purposed in my heart to try to close the door forever to claims for improper temperature settings on reefer loads yeah and explain for people what that means like what might a reefer be hauling where temperature is important okay in in the early years when we did this we transported uh produce and lettuce was a big one lettuce is the most sensitive produce that we Haul okay it can get damaged pretty easily so it's got to be on the right temperature and we we used to pick up loads that they shipped it in bulk and uh so if the temperature setting was delivering too much Cold Supply Air okay it could burn part of the leaves it could be too cold it could be too cold it's delivering too cold of Supply Air to maintain the temperature setting and it would burn part of the lettuce and we'd have a rejection or partial rejection or the reefer could be set on a totally wrong temperature and you could get the whole load reject it so I have purpose in my heart you know when Josh had asked me to start checking these reefers I laid it to hard because I want to close the door to any kind of claims that come forth with improper temperature settings on these reefer loads because it's a lot of money right yes I mean I I just put it in perspective because we get people that are in the industry and people outside of it if you had a load of lettuce or produce and it was all rejected what kind of money are we talking about that's quite a bit I'm not sure the total figure but it's a lot yeah it's a lot and my heart is it's not going to happen exactly on my watch I'm doing everything I can do to exactly you know Bill like so many people at freightworks you know God's brought us from different backgrounds you actually have got a very interesting personal background I want you to take as much time as you need to describe that like how did you how did you get here how did I get the Frameworks how did you get the freight works it kind of goes back 38 years because I've known Josh and his family for 38 years so initially um my wife and I were youth pastors out in California and I was praying one night before service and I heard the spirit of God say I want you to move to North Carolina I didn't know where exactly but I felt in my heart like God was saying to move towards the direction of Charlotte so my wife and I packed up and we moved to North Carolina and didn't know anybody and we actually landed in Hendersonville somewhere in February of 1985 really yes and it just so happened that Joshua's Father Ray own a Paving business right and so they were having a Bible study and so we didn't know anybody so uh Josh's mother Diane reached out to my wife and called her and she invited us to come over for a Bible study and so that's how we met the farmers well through that an interesting situation had Arisen because uh Ray and Diane needed to go out of town for a weekend so they asked Jennifer and myself to come and watch Josh and Caleb now at that time Josh was was I think he was in eighth grade and Caleb was a lot younger and so back then we went over and we spent time with them and and Josh at that age was a model railroad Enthusiast so I got down there and I helped him work on his model railroad this is people are going to love this yes so so this is this was how I met Josh farmer 38 years ago and I highly respect this family when you we use that terminology we're a family well I don't say that lightly we're a family if you're if you're doing uh if you're doing railroad work with Josh when he's eight or nine years old and you're helping him with that that's that's family bill so I find that I find it interesting that here we are 38 years later and I'm working for a trucking company so anyway as time as time goes on I his father owned uh he had sold the paving business and he moved down here to Rutherfordton and so he had started up a construction company so in the past 20 years I worked on and off for Papa Ray in his construction company I worked also for a landscape company but I was always around Papa Ray and what went on and so uh from 2007 to 2014 I was working for Papa Ray's Construction company and I was working up in a skylight and I was on a ladder and the ladder was unstable it shifted I fell off the ladder my leg went down through the rung of the ladder all my weight came down on my heel I cracked my heel fractured my ankle and I was in severe pain so they had to come and get me up and help me get out of the house and I went and had the the ankle examined and it kind of put me down for a while so as I begin to heal it took me like two years to get over that injury I walked with a cane for about a year or so and different things and finally went back to work in construction work and it got to the point where I just couldn't do it make a living at it anymore and the other issue with all that as I've been a school teacher I've been a science teacher for 20 years and I've been a drivers and Ed instructor for the last five years so work in construction it got harder and harder one to do the job physically and two to find jobs at night in people's home where you could be there working in the home and so I had started praying about it and I felt like it was time for a change and um actually uh I had was doing some work in the cabin where when we were at the cabin over there and I was doing some renovation work for Josh there and he pretty much had been carrying it and felt like God spoke to him to give me a job so I went to work for Josh I talked to his father told him I needed to change directions and I went to work for Josh and so I've been working for Freight works for nine years now that is just incredible now I for people that don't know there are certain vagaries and certain circumstances you deal with on second shift can you just like from when to when are you on and what do you do during that time okay so pretty much I I get in the saddle about 3 30 in the afternoon and the very first thing I do is it takes me about an hour but I run through all the reefer loads and I get a perspective of what's going on in the company and I make sure all the reefers are on the right settings and and the orders are correct and we're going on and then basically uh I log into the queue and then I'm ready for phone calls and you could have a night where you're just bombarded it's it's call after call after call or it can be somewhat quiet but there's all kinds of problems that show up you know uh drivers call in they need pickup numbers uh or they may need a lumper check to pay for a loading service to provide people what a lumper is people that don't know a lumper is a fee that you pay for a company to come and unload the truck yeah and so you have to pay that oftentimes by EFS check and sometimes now we use relay codes but a driver will call in for a code and say I need a lump or fee paid and we'll have to issue it

um man other problems arise now another thing that's been recently added in we have to start doing breakdown issues right so we have to start helping maintenance and so what what do you do there well the driver calls in and says he has a maintenance problem then we try to uh hear what's the best resolution to solve the problem and so um we work with maintenance closely now this is a new thing that's been added so when somebody calls and says I'm having an issue with my truck from a maintenance standpoint you become like an ombudsman or an interface or an advocate to make sure they get what they do yes is that what it is and then on top of that I have the balance the dispatch side of things because you've got to be responsible with your schedules and you got to make sure the loads are delivered on time and you have to take hold of the driver you have to take hold of the driver that that's my primary focus is to make sure that driver is taking off you know what let's let's go with what you just said there because Bill I know this is not a job for you it's a Ministry yes and I know that the way you've organized your life because you're a friend and a brother is that everything you do it's not work or faith everything you do is driven by your personal relationship with Jesus and so talk a little bit about how your faith informs all the problems you got to deal with all the time well God gave me the job so I have an accountability and I have to answer to God for the way I do my job he put me on this job and he knows the people that I need to come in contact with on a daily basis so my heart is that when a driver calls in they're not just talking to a dispatcher they're talking to a friend and a minister and a minister there's somebody there that they know that they can trust you know I I purpose in my heart to try to treat them with the most dignity and respect that I possibly can and I want them to feel the love of God and see hey there's something different right and the god that bill creason serves as real right I want people to recognize that right so that's the motivation as far as why I do what I do and this is not a career move for me I didn't come here for a career I didn't come here for a job God put me here to be a minister and he wants to do a work in my heart and he wants me to be able to touch people's lives so that's how that's what I try to do you know folks we've said it often here recently on on this podcast freightworks is a very diverse company we have people from many different backgrounds faith and no faith but the organizing principles of this company are clearly based on biblical values and they're expressed in the behaviors of Staff members like bills so Bill when you're in the middle of lots going on you've got the cacophony of you know it's quiet and then all of a sudden you've got four drivers that all need something immediately where do you where do you go dude man well in the early years I used to get really stressed out okay and uh took a few hard knocks over over the early years but when I like I said I started to grow into this job and I started to grow spiritually and responsibly with the drivers and understand how the business operates um it's a little different now um I don't know the wisdom of God just comes to me a lot of times on how to deal with the situation what to say how to help a person but I'm always trying my best to turn my heart to God in here God how do you want to help this person what do you want me to say to this person how can I help them what do I need to do here what's what's your way in this situation you know for people that aren't drivers and they've not been a part of driving and transportation and Logistics can you paint the picture of the many different potential frustrations and issues that drivers face every day I mean describe what drivers deal with a lot of times shipping delays they're on a schedule sometimes the schedule can be pretty tight and restrained and then they get delayed in the shipper you know sometimes drivers have frustrations with that uh they get to the they get to the ship or to try to pick up a load and they don't have the proper pickup number and so they'll call in and you have to you know decipher through the orders and see what's the right pickup number here and try to try to get that situation resolved you know um it's a high stress business and uh I do my best to try to keep the driver in peace and help them when I can help them but that does a lot of issues um traffic they've got to be somewhere the clock's ticking they only got 11 hours of Drive they got 14 hours in a day to work the clock sticking they get in heavy traffic they know they're going to be late for the load a lot of them do not like to be late you have to help them there sometimes you know and then you have things like weather and weather issues mechanical issues breakdowns just all kinds of different things that can happen you know so interesting because I've talked to some people before and they think it's as simple as you get in a truck and you drive somewhere no and they have no idea like Jake Johnson are representative came here and he left saying Butch the complexity of all of it just all of what's needed in logistics and support for people was beyond what he could imagine there's there's a whole lot there isn't there yes a whole lot there right and uh and so and of course we have women and men that are drivers solos and and teams now do you deal with a particular group of drivers or the interesting thing is I deal with the whole Fleet right I talk that's what I thought I talk to everybody you know and I have to work closely with the driver managers I have to work closely with the load planners uh some nights they get a lot of phone calls from me because I don't always know what the big picture is I don't know where they're going with something right so I see in part A lot of times and then I gotta call and find you know get the big picture okay so your interaction with the load planners and Driver managers would would look like what I mean how do you how does that happen uh like a lot of times they'll call and say okay I I called in this was scheduled no I don't see this load on me can you tell me what happened here um there was somebody was going to call me back but I haven't received a call phone call yet but can you tell me what's going on here so I'll have to go to the load planner or the driver manager and see what was planned for this person so that I can call that driver back and and make them feel like they were taken care of and they're given the right information and they can be settled and be at peace and let them know that hey we're working on your situation um there's a lot of that that has to go on so many of these dry it's interesting because I used to have a little office over there over over there and I told Joyce and Josh I really want to be close to where the drivers are and so we call this freightworks one Studio it's right around the corner from the driver's lounge and so often they'll even when I come in on Saturdays sometimes which I do so often the drivers just need somebody to listen yes right can you talk about that well I can I can I was thinking about a situation that happened and this is why I highly respect Josh farmer there was a situation that happened when the driver this was years ago when I was first it used to be before we had 24 7 dispatch you were on call you were it for a whole week 24 7. you worked your shift and you were non-stop around the clock on call so it was a particular Saturday this looks like a doctor yeah it was pretty intense so um so this one driver calls in and uh he gets on the phone and he proceeds to tell me what his problem is it has nothing to do with Trucking and he proceeds to open up his heart and tell me what his problem and then he starts crying and breaking down and he told me that something happened he couldn't pay his rent the the landlord was threatening to evict him and throw his stuff out and he was just coming on glued basically and so I took hold of the man and I said hold on put him on hold I got on the telephone and I called up Josh farmer and I explained to him what happened Josh the founder and the president the founder of the president the company now how many CEOs of a company can you call up at any time or day and explain this problem and get a response and him jump in and personally take hold of something I highly I highly respect this man absolutely he's one of the most level-headed people and solid individuals I've ever met and I enjoy working for him yeah exactly and and so many of the drivers have told me bill because I'm new to this whole industry by the way they love it when I tell them I don't know anything about driving and Logistics because they'll they'll tell me I will explain everything to you but you know Josh has been so available to so many drivers they know him and and papa Ray as well I mean and and so when the company says we're a family it really means it but you know it's it's not just saying that there's a reason for that I mean there there's a spiritual reason behind the way this company is can you explain that it's not just what we do it's why we do what we do the thing I know is Josh farmer loves God and Josh farmer loves people and so does his dad and that's what they portray you're taking hold of when you come to this company

right you're taken care of right and that that's you're just you're taking care of let me let me switch gears for a minute and uh and ask you this question so you teach you're also a teacher yeah I'm aware of that what do you teach chemistry physics based things um I I teach all the way from fourth grade to 12th grade okay chemistry in the upper grades physics and the upper grades some a little bit of biology and practical science through the younger grades were you one of were you one of those children that had like a science kit a science no I just when I was when I was in school uh eighth grade I think is where my interest I I really developed an interest in chemistry I found it fascinating and that's just something I really like doing and so years later I find myself teaching it so I've been teaching it for about 20 years that's that's incredible and you know what the impact of teaching is profound I mean you're pouring your life into young minds and hearts and souls and and and spirits and but you enjoy the impact of that on on young people sure it's very it's very rewarding experience as a matter of fact there are several of the people in Freight works that I taught I never got a chance to teach Josh and he had graduated before my time there but there are other people that work in Frameworks that I have taught through the years Bill I'm not sure I've ever confessed this to anybody I loved memorizing the Periodic Chart when I was young I I became very fascinated with that and of course uh I've had to get a lot of prayer for a lot of things that were put in me uh just in terms of systems and all of that but do you find that when you work with drivers that uh when when they call and you take hold of them and and they find a sense of Peace at the end of it that that it's better for their driving I mean they're they're going to be yeah and not only that then that's I know I've done my job If a driver calls in and he's on the edge and he's he's really stressed and he's on the verge of being very very frustrated if I can take take hold of the man or the woman and and speak to him the right things and help him with their situation and get them calmed down then I'm doing my job then I'm doing what God's wanting me to do right and uh and you know one one thing too Bill uh is a friend I've said this to you before I love that you work outdoors and you do and and there are times I drive by and the piece of your yard I've said this to many people just communicates a sense of God's God's peace to me you just built something outside recently didn't you yeah yeah uh yes I've been working my wife had come to me and asked me to build her an outdoor kitchen and so it just so started that's what we've been doing for the past year and a half I think and I'm very very close to finishing it actually I was out there working on it today I know you were I saw you earlier this morning so I've been working on it I'm trying to really press and get it finished and get it wrapped up so we can move on to some other things but my wife had come to me and asked me to do this and uh I felt like I needed to that is that is that is so good now you know we're in an environment where there are so many companies that are encouraging potential drivers to kick the tires and consider them you know Bill you've been around here for a lot of I mean nine years the company's only what 10 you're 10 11 years old yeah so you've been here you've been here um if you were to encourage people this is not an infomercial but if you were to encourage people that are considering making a change from whatever company they're at they're not happy to come to freightworks could you explain some of the reasons why that would be something for them to consider doing well I just think the quality of the people that work here is very very high Josh farmer is one of the best individuals and his father that I've ever worked for they're God-fearing people they love God and they love people so rest assured you're going to be taken care of you know um you know on the logistics side of it the pays com you know competitive competitive and and there it's good the equipment you know Josh is overhauling the fleet so the equipment's being upgraded um and and I just think that when you call in and you talk to the the operations people they're gonna help you and you're going to get your your questions answers you're going to get your problems solved they're responsible individuals and I love working with every one of them I just think they're I think it's a good solid company and it's got a lot of good solid people working for it that's that's a that's a great way to say it and you know so you know there's so many drivers that come here bring the baggage bad experiences and we we never ever we will never attack another company but there are drivers that come here and they'll tell me stories that I just can't believe yeah they're not known they're not appreciated I even had a driver one time Bill show me a picture he said this was my truck it was unsafe my driver manager said you got to travel at least another 128 miles on this unsafe truck we would never do that no so uh but against that backdrop when drivers come here often they'll tell me it's going to take me a little while to believe that this is as good as it seems it it is and uh that's that's that's so interesting now you interact with the other team members of course and who are the people you mostly interact with uh Logan Silas Arthur Kevin Stone yeah not so much Chastity and Kimberly um because I uh too much I do from now and then but it's usually Arthur Silas uh Kevin because they're here later right you know they're late they're later in the evening so they're so it's easy for me to get a hold of them so we just it's real makes it real easy and you know you know what's so important about podcasts like this and I'm noticing we're our our time is running down and and you've heard me say this on podcast before great conversations happen with God's self effortlessly and they and they go they go quickly but you know what's you know what's great is is that new drivers are telling us that they're going to watch podcasts to learn about staff and so some of the people they're going to work with are people that they get to know a little bit better here and and um you know Bill you've you've opened your heart and I'm grateful for that you're a dear friend and I get to give you a gift oh great and so let me just quickly go through this so This Life of the mile uh logoed hat we had at the Mid-America truck show I will confess this I went into that a million square feet of of uh exhibit space 80 000 people I don't know anything about truck driving and we did I think 23 podcasts while I was there I had to really ask Jesus to help me this hat was loved I think because of the Patriotic theme and and the like and then of course we're in freightworks one Studio here right around the corner from our beautifully appointed drivers lounge and Andrea farmer and Josh I'm hoping to get both of them on together soon her fingerprints are all over the beauty of that Lounge that's our freightworks One logo and then winter is upon us and so these beanies have been popular we've got these beanies with the Life by the mile leather patch there so we don't have to mail these to you because we're neighbors and we're all here together which one of these may I give you probably that blue one there the freight works one right I like that there we there we go that's that's freightworks one this is freightworks one Studio this is Bill creason uh and you know Bill I I appreciate so much that you've described for people what it's like to be in the trenches when you're on the phone you're taking hold of drivers that are all over America and dispatch is more than just a word or a title it's a Ministry assignment and you've made that so very clear so whether you're a person of Faith or not whether you're somebody that's following after God or or not the reality is Facebook this place uh freightworks is a great place for you to come because it's going to be in a family context that you'll learn how to work and grow together sure and we all look out for each other and so bill is there to look out for you as somebody on second shift right right and who's on third shift it was it's the um offshore team yeah in the Philippines we have an offshore team but 24 7 there's going to be somebody to help you if you you come here and you're a driver and uh you know for the days ahead uh Bill we don't know what the Market's gonna look like there are cycles that are up and down but we know that that you and I serve an unshakable God sure there's no shadow of turning and we depend on him every day and I'm just so grateful personally uh being here less than two years uh to have people like you that I can work with so thanks so much for taking time away from what you do to be with us today well thank you butch it's an honor and a privilege it's life of the mile delivered by freightworks make sure you tune in two times every week like share engage push it out so we can grow the audience and in the days ahead make sure you make comments about some topics that you'd like us to consider we'll look forward to being with you again soon thanks for watching this episode you know life by the mile delivered by freightworks is one of the newest largest and fastest growing podcasts actually produced by trucking company now we want you to like and share this episode if you'd like to see more episodes click here and make sure that you subscribe to this channel by clicking here we'll see you there

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