A Day in the Life of Truckstop Operator Tony Moore


Tony Moore, manager of Simmons Travel Center in Emporia, Va., is either at work or on call 24 hours a day. Not only does his staff have his number, he leaves his cards throughout the location so customers know how to reach him day or night. His goal is to make customers feel welcome and he wants them to know he cares.

While Moore is available 24/7, he officially starts his day at 7:00 a.m.As soon as he pulls in the location, he rides around the parking lot and make sure everything is in order. Next, he goes through email and prioritizes his day. If any customer concerns have come up, he takes care of those first.

Moore also addresses any human resource issues that have arisen. “If your employees are happy, your customers are happy,” he said. Simmons Travel Center has 20 employees—16 full time and four part time.

To help keep employees happy, Moore sets goals for them. “Last month we were trying to increase pizza sales by 10 percent. The goal keeps them focused,” he said, adding that if they achieve the goal, the company takes the employees out for a meal or brings in food.

As for Moore’s own lunch, he usually grabs something after he finishes the daily bank run. After lunch, he meets with vendors and sales reps. Finally he makes a list of items for the third shift to ensure everything gets done.

Not only does Moore work to keep his employees engaged, he also works to keep his own productivity up. “You have to be a good time manager,” he said. “I have an open door policy, but I’ll shut the door for twenty minutes or not answer calls for twenty minutes. You don’t want to end up doing three things at once. You have to say no sometimes.”

Moore said the best part of his day is interacting with people. “The drivers like you to recognize them and know their name,” he said, adding that the location has at least 300 customers a day. Simmons Travel Center sits on 9.5 acres and has over 2,000 square feet. In addition to offering fuel, the location has a Huddle House restaurant, Hunt Brothers Pizza, CAT Scales and a hair salon.


{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. 

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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
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