In this episode Damien Pahulu of Frontier Packers discusses how he began in the industry after relocating from New Zealand to Australia in 1999, starting as an offsider (porter), and then a driver and now is a contractor for a large moving company in Brisbane, Australia.
As a contractor Damien is purely operations based and does international, domestic and government moves, where he and his team pack and load containers which are sent on rail or B-double trucks. Damien’s company, Frontier Packers, run a single truck and a Ute, with a crew of three.
Damien’s challenges were discovering that he wasn’t really cut out for managing large groups of people, even though he kept trying, but also his initiative into training videos was not well received by the global company he worked for at the time, so he made his own and released them on YouTube (link below).
The one thing Damien would like to change from his moving past is to have backed himself into going out on his own a lot sooner.
Damien’s highpoint of being in the industry is meeting company owners and learning from them.
Damien talks about AFRA, the Australian Furniture Removers Association, of which he is not a member, however, the company he contracts to is.
Damien would like to change three things within the moving industry, changing the mindset that more competition from the cheaper removers is bad, operation staff to dream bigger not only within their role but within the industry, and finally, to change or remove some of the rules set by the relocation companies regarding the forms that must be completed! And I challenge Damien on his mindset that more cheaper removers are good for the industry.
Damien’s advice to just starting out in the industry again is to give himself the confidence to back himself sooner and go out alone.
Damien believes that in the next 5 years technology will play a big part within the industry (maybe an Uber for porters), as too will be self-driving trucks.
Damien lives and breathes removals, but when he does switch off, he loves spending time with his family, and visiting family members and friends.
And as always we end Moving Matters with a funny moving story, regarding a wedding portrait (photograph).
Links to Damien: