Martin Baker

Use technology to streamline your workflow and give support to your employees to further educate you in what they do best.


Martin Baker is the CEO and President of Schumacher Cargo Logistics, an international vehicle shipping and overseas relocation company with over 40 years of history.

Martin Baker was born in Dublin, Ireland and moved to Los Angeles in 1996. His inter-company transfer from Europe to the USA provided Martin on-hand experience of the complexities of any international relocation. Early in the year 2000, Martin purchased a small three person freight forwarding company called “Schumacher Cargo” thus giving life to his goal of establishing a Classic Car & Relocation shipping company under one umbrella. Growth came fast to his new company with domestic expansions to Houston, Texas as well as in Elizabeth, New Jersey, and overseas expansions to Norway, Denmark, Germany, Holland and the United Kingdom. Today Martin still lives in Los Angeles and enjoys attending Classic Car events with his two young kids and wife.

Where did the idea for Schumacher Cargo Logistics come from

The original name came from the previous owner, Mr. Harro Schumacher. Harro was an ex-pat from Germany who I conducted shipping with during my early years in the USA. Harro Schumacher was looking to retire and approached me to purchase his company.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

My day starts when most people are asleep. I am an early riser and my mind never actually slows down when it comes to our company. I consistently seek ways to improve our customer services, reduce costs in the supply chain and support the great employees we have.

How do you bring ideas to life?

I believe all great ideas come from within an organization. I carefully listen to our customer & employees alike, then seek advice from the company management structures we have in place. From there we build an action plan and assign a key control person to oversee whatever we are attempting to create.

What’s one trend that excites you?

I was an early learner of the value of the internet and the use of technology. Learning what is new in our industry, watching new marketing trends on the internet then bringing all that together for our company, excites me more day by day.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I have never liked to use the word “entrepreneur.” I feel this is a word used by others to describe a position that they feel is of value. This is not the case for me. I am an old fashioned business person who seeks value in long term planning, and makes positive moves that have consequences for many people on a daily basis. This is just hard work and a love for what I do. This is my best habit.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would tell myself to have used my gut feelings a lot more. If you feel something is not right, seek change, and be a bit more patient with others.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

I evaluate people within seconds of meeting them. From the moment I meet a person, I immediately form an impression. First impressions are so important to me, so whenever I introduced to anyone I make sure they do not forget me by using humor, energy and acknowledgement of others.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Always surround yourself with good people that are far brighter, smarter and more educated in their professions than you are.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

About 10 years ago the company had to be restructured due overexpansion and waste. I had to then make the necessary change which started with ME! I had to become more focused on caring for the company, not just working hard, but working smartly.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

I expanded the company way too fast in our early years. Sales revenues do not equate to profit. Once I turned my attention away from sales revenues and focused on the bottom line by reducing costs and the size of the company, I and the company become way more healthy and focused on what is important to steady firm growth.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

Use technology to streamline your workflow and give support to your employees to further educate you in what they do best.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

I was recently was in Petco, you know the pet shop. A woman was collecting used dog toys for an animal care facility. I was listening to this young women explain to the cashier what her colleagues do for these abandoned animals. I just walked over to her and gave her the 1 hundred dollar bill I had on me and said, please use this however you want. Yes I do own a dog, but I am by no means an emotional person, just something hit a nerve and I reacted. It reminded me that there are good people out there just doing good deeds. It was my way of saying, Thank You!

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

I use frequently not because of the cost savings, but because of the ease, simplicity and customer value the on-line store offers to office bound people, such as myself.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

I mainly read newspapers instead of books to stay up to date to what is happening outside of my world. To understand people is to enjoy being with them, this relays to my employees, our customers and vendors alike.

What is your favorite quote?

“Listen twice as much as you talk”

Key learnings:

• Keep your company focused in the direction you set, do not get too distracted.
• Promote people from within before you bring new outsiders.
• Continually educate yourself and your employees, never stop seeking advice.
• Seek good customers that you enjoy doing business with.
• Always come into your company with a smile on your face and say hello.


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