What's it like to work at Flock Freight? An interview with An Le Nguyen and Keoni Sanchez

Published on
May 28, 2020
Contributed by

How two employees promote collaboration and innovation on our Product team

When it comes to working at Flock Freight®, no one has more office cred or stories than seasoned vets who have been contributing to the company for years. An Le Nguyen and Keoni Sanchez are two such people. To gain some perspective on life in the Flock, we interviewed them about their jobs, their teamwork on the Product team, and their attachment to the company.[caption id="attachment_4928" align="alignnone" width="647"]

Our Product & Engineering team (including Keoni, An, and teammates Ryan, Tony, Brandon, Nick, Nathan, Oliver, Suganth, Joel, Geoffrey, David, Brian, and Daniel) digs into dinner at NoW Sushi as part of a team building event last summer.[/caption]

1. When did you start at Flock Freight, and how has your role evolved since then?

An: I became Flock Freight’s first Product Manager in January 2018. Since then, I’ve grown into a Senior Product Manager.Keoni: I started at Flock Freight in August 2017 as a Pooling (Logistics) Analyst. In April 2019, I transitioned into an Associate Product Manager on the Product & Engineering team. In May 2020, I became a Product Manager.My role has evolved significantly since I started working at Flock Freight. I began working directly with the Operations team and carriers, identifying and organizing shipments that we could pool onto one truck. When I started to suggest improvements for our pooling technology in addition to my other responsibilities, I moved to the Product team. Now, I use my collective experience to help the Operations team boost efficiency.

2. In what capacity do you two work together, and can you provide an example of a project or a task that you collaborate(d) on?

An: Our work is highly interconnected. I focus on enhancements that directly affect shippers and carriers, while Keoni focuses on the internal workflows that underpin these enhancements. We’re in constant communication to ensure that the Flock Freight platform works seamlessly from end to end.For example, Keoni introduced massive improvements that help our Carrier Sales team find carriers that match with shipper loads. This effort is deeply related to projects that I’m leading, which will allow us to directly interface with carriers and help them grow into strategic partners.Keoni: An and I work together every single day on every single project, using each other to discuss, validate, and prioritize issues. She knows so much about working on Product and assisting our customers; I’m always learning from her! Some specific cross-functional projects that we are currently working on include streamlining the post-order process and increasing carrier engagement.[caption id="attachment_4929" align="alignnone" width="660"]

Keoni and An join coworkers Tony, Suganth, and Lu (along with other members of Flock Freight’s volleyball team) for some after-work fun at Wave Volleyball Club in December.[/caption]

3. What's the best part of your job?

An: I love the opportunity to invent solutions to problems and iterate on them.There is a common misconception that innovation is based on a single “aha" moment. In practice, innovation is more like a series of experiments that evolve over time.It's always thrilling when the engineers and I have a kernel of an idea to start with. Once we've experimented with the simplest version of it and that version is live, we can leverage feedback and data to continually find ways to make the idea better and better. This iterative loop is rewarding because you can see innovation happening on a weekly, even daily, basis.Keoni: Part of my job is delivering products that assist our internal teams with their key functions, which gives me the chance to work with many parts of the company. I love this! It feels great knowing that I’m supporting my coworkers and helping them make life better for our customers.

4. How do you identify with Flock Freight's company mission and/or core values?

An: On a meta level, I love the idea of pooling. It’s awesome to know that we are directly making the world cleaner and greener by driving efficiency in freight.On a personal level, I like helping people. By virtue of my job, I’ve been able to speak to lots of shippers, dispatchers, and drivers — hardworking folks who put in countless hours on the roads, on the docks, and in back offices to make sure that our world keeps running. It is satisfying to know that our work at Flock Freight is fundamentally designed to change the industry in a way that helps these individuals. And the thing is, we’re just getting started. There is so much more for us to do!Keoni: I identify very closely with our mission of pooling freight to reinvent the industry and help the environment. Throughout my entire career here at Flock Freight, I’ve had the chance to develop our pooling technology and put our company in the unique position of lowering costs for shippers, while increasing pay and available loads for carriers.[caption id="attachment_4930" align="alignnone" width="436"]

Keoni, An, and other members of the Flock (Brian, Oliver, Nick, Lu, Suganth, Ryan, and Brandon) live it up during our holiday party at Belly Up music venue.[/caption]

5. What's one of your team's projects that you're most proud of?

An: Launching FlockDirect™️ was a huge technical and operational feat. There were so many puzzle pieces to put together: Building internal workflows to service FlockDirect, costing automation, pricing automation, UI/UX, branding, analytics, and 5,000 other things. It was fun and exhausting.Keoni: I'm proud of developing an internal tool that prioritized our differentiated pooling ability and fundamentally shifted the way our organization thought about fulfilling loads. It encouraged our Carrier Sales team to focus on pooling loads instead of moving shipments individually.

6. What's your favorite Flock Freight memory?

An: Mine is skydiving with the team on a crystal-clear December day. I distinctly remember having a conversation mid-air with my colleague Alice as we were floating down to Earth, each of us attached to our respective tandem skydiver. I kept thinking, “This can’t be real. We just jumped out of a tiny plane with our CEO and a bunch of Sales and Engineering folks."Keoni: I remember the Series A investment on Halloween 2017, when Oren (our CEO) and Peter (our VP of Operations & Analytics) were watching the funding come in while wearing full costumes. Oren was donning a shark onesie, and Peter was dressed as a whoopee cushion.Having multiple investors (including GV) really validated early on that prominent people believed in our product, and it was very fun to celebrate and share that moment with everyone during the holiday festivities.A huge thank-you to An and Keoni for taking the time to answer these questions and for their invaluable contributions to our team!

About Flock Freight

Flock Freight thrives when employees like An and Keoni bring our corporate values to life.We work toward our mission of transforming the freight industry with algorithmic pooling by acting with an all-in mentality, thinking big, empowering our people, staying agile, and doing the right thing.More specifically, our proprietary product, FlockDirect, moves shipments via shared truckload service, creating efficiencies for carriers, savings for customers, and a smooth experience for all.Our technology would be nothing without our brilliant people, who obsess over growing our customer base, developing our carrier network, and improving our platform.At Flock Freight, we’re reshaping the North American trucking landscape — one shared truckload at a time. Are you up for the challenge?