Since 1974, Marcia Taylor has been building her family-owned transportation and logistics company, Bennett International Group, into a global corporation with annual revenue in excess of $315 million. As the most recent presenter in the College of Business at Clayton State University’s Jim Wood Speaker Series, she took the time to go into depth about Bennett’s success story.
“My goal tonight is to talk with you about Bennett’s 40 year journey of starting and growing its business and some of the lessons we learned along the way,” she said in opening her Clayton State presentation. “Bennett is a family-owned company with my three grown children, David, Danny and Lynette, all involved in the business, along with four of my seven grandchildren. We are faith-based, with a strong foundation of core values; a network of more than 3,000 owner/operators, agents and employees who have made us what we are today.”
Taylor continued with a brief history of the company, and then spoke about Bennett today and its growth through the years, in a growing diversity of operations, including: a wide variety of freight services; warehousing and supply chain management; an oil and gas industry pipe yard; manufacturing of buildings, both portable and onsite constructed buildings; and the newest venture into cranes and rigging services.
Of course, there are a lot of successful transportation and logistics companies in the marketplace, so Taylor explained what makes Bennett special – the firm’s core values. These include;
Financial Strength – the importance of fiscal success
Patriotism – honoring those who protect and serve in our country’s military
Family Culture – our Bennett Family - We truly care about our employees and their well-being
Bennett Drivers – Bennett has a heart for drivers, and as a woman-owned company, a special place for women drivers
Giving back to the community – which comes from being faith based. The Taylor Family Foundation – a formal way to give back.
Indeed, The Taylor Family Foundation is known for its activity in the community, including Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s simulation room, Camp Bennett – a summer camp where lives are changed, and the Taylor Foundation’s awarded a grant of $10,000 to the Clayton State University Foundation to support four upperclassmen majoring in Supply Chain Management at Clayton State.
“The Taylor Family Foundation and Bennett International Group are proud to partner with Clayton State University and the College of Business by making these funds available to students so that they may continue their educational dreams,” stated Lynette Alt, vice president of Bennett and the administrator for the McDonough-based Taylor Family Foundation at the time of the grant award. “The annual scholarships continue a tradition established by Mrs. Taylor and Bennett International Group to be actively involved in the communities in which we operate.”
In concluding her talk, Taylor left the following thoughts with her student audience.
“You can do anything you set your mind to do,” she began. “Don’t be afraid to try and learn new things. Be fearless. Always work to fulfill your customer or company needs. Take your time and make decisions wisely. Find and consult with a good mentor.
“As you complete your education and venture out into the business world, don’t be afraid to bring with you those core values and principles – whatever they may be – that make you who you are, and make sure they shine through in everything you do.”