A Day in the Life of a NATSO Truckstop Member


For Ron Hicks, overseeing operations at three travel plazas means that every day is different. As the general manager for Silver's Travel Center and Casino, Frog City Travel Plaza and Henderson Travel Plaza in Louisiana, Hicks starts his days early and is on the go until he walks out the door in the evening. He divides his time between the three locations he manages and schedules set manager meetings at each one throughout the week. To help industry suppliers better understand what life is like within a truckstop, Hicks shared a quick glimpse of a day in the life with Highway Business Matters.

“I get up about 5:30 in the morning and I'm at the truckstop at 7:00 or 7:30 at the latest. I check the fuel island and the gas island to make sure everything is in a good working order. I see if anything happened overnight that I need to address. After that I check to see that everybody is in place for the day's business.

The busiest time of day is the morning because you're checking all of that and looking at your numbers-the fuel and gas margins. After I check things out, I get my fuel readings to see if I need to order gas or fuel. After that I check deposits to see the numbers and see where sales are, I also look at where labor is. 

Then I check the restaurants and store. I check with my managers to see if they need anything or if I need to give them any information. By the time I do all of that it is almost noon.

Lunch is a busy time in the deli and your restaurant. There is a lot of activity during the lunch period, and the food service facilities are a busy area until about 1:30.

The afternoon is when you take care of your business. In the afternoon a lot of times I'll set up appointments with vendors or go over insurance. I check our EPA compliances. Then after you've done all of that before you leave you make sure your management team and shift leaders are in place for the evening.

Add into this any customer complaints you're trying to turn positive, employee complaints and employee issues, and it is a full day. By the time its time to go, you're ready to go. I head out around 5:30 or 6:00.”

{HBMHighway Business Matters is a brief semi-monthly newsletter created exclusively for companies that provide products or services to the truckstop and travel plaza industry. Highway Business Matters will keep you informed on trends, tactics, and tips to help you connect to the $65 billion truckstop and travel plaza industry. 

Help tailor Highway Business Matters to meet your needs by sharing your feedback and story ideas. Send your input to: atoner@natso.com.


Mindy Long's photo

Mindy Long

Before launching a full-time freelance career, Long edited NATSO's Stop Watch magazine. Prior to that Long worked as a staff reporter for Transport Topics, a weekly trade newspaper, covering freight transportation, fuel and environmental issues. In addition to covering the transportation sector, Long has written, reported and edited for a variety of media outlets. She was the Washington correspondent for WCAX-TV (CBS) in Burlington, Vt., a criminal court reporter in Chicago and a freelance copy editor for Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine in Washington D.C. Long hold a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in Evanston, Ill., and a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Westminster College in Salt Lake City.More
Highway Business Matters (HBM)
Retailer Featured:
Frog City Travel PlazaHenderson Travel PlazaSilver's Travel Center and Casino

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