A man there was and they called him mad, the more he gave, the more he had

A man there was and they called him mad, the more he gave, the more he had. -John Bunyan

To a logical thinker like me, I read that and “Yeah Riiiiiiight.” But the other side of my brain sees that it is absolutely true. A very wise man Bill Ferguson, once taught me “If you put your focus on yourself, your life is guaranteed to be full of crap, if you put your focus on others your life will be beautiful.” I have heard some true words in life, but truer words have never been spoken. Thanks Bill for the many lessons you have taught me.

Now speaking of wise men, I need to give you an update. Effective immediately, I will no longer be writing Blogs for Lake Truck Lines. The three of you that keep up with the blog, I am sure will be heart broken.

There is a much larger picture being painted right now and in fact the canvas is about 63 years and 3 months old. I am hanging it up in the running of the company. Nah, I’m not dying or retiring, something bigger than that is taking place.

For the first time, Lake Truck Lines, Inc. has hired a Chief Operating Officer (COO). I will still be President, but I felt that it was time for Lake to be run by a professional instead of a 30 year rookie like me.

With this, I announce the hiring of Mr. Bruce Booker as COO. Bruce has been our Houston Manager for the past 18 months and prior to that, proved his mettle by running the nightmare known as the Pennsylvania Experience. He will introduce himself to you three readers next week when he gives his first blog.

So, the lesson of the day is “The more you give, the more you Have”…..Hmmmm, I can work with that.

Today I will be just a tad selfish. The more I gave to the Company and to its employee partner family, I was rewarded tenfold. But that’s the easy part. Anyone can say “One Invested, Ten Returned”. But what happens when it’s “One Invested……..Nothing,” “One Invested…..Nothing?” Well what happens is that you change your paradigm.

You change seeing what you “Have.” “The More You Give, changes the More You Have.” It ain’t always apples to apples Baby. Sometimes it’s apples to oranges and sometimes it’s even apples to lumps of coal. My point is your rewards are everywhere around you and I mean everywhere. Sometimes, you don’t need the apple; you need the orange because you have a sore throat. Sometimes you need the lump of coal to keep you warm on a cold night. Maybe you gave an apple and all you got in return was a rock. Maybe you needed some recreation time…..and you skipped the rock on a lake…and it made you happy.

My point in all of this is do not give with the end in mind! Give just to give!

After thirty years, I have just started truly giving to the company.

Now to those of you concerned about reading my words of wisdom, you can find me at the website for Lake Oilfield Services at www.lakeoilfieldservices.com starting next week.

Thank you all for 3 decades of heartaches, blessing, challenges and achievements. Thanks to the Universe for determining whether I needed an apple, or an orange, or coal, or a rock. I will continue to give my all for my company and its many partners and employees.

God Bless and Good Night

Douglas Cain

Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.

Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle. – Christian D. Larson

Belief in oneself….and knowing oneself.  Different sides of the same coin.  Actually I believed in myself long before I knew I would be a success. Mostly it was just believing in the lessons I had learned earlier in my life, that I know would serve me and take me through all those ‘obstacles’ and take me through to the other side.

I am working with a contractor in Odessa right now.  It seems that no matter how hard he works he is facing obstacle after obstacle.   Each one seeming more insurmountable than the last.  I can relate and I am sure you can relate as well.  How many of us have asked ‘When is this ever going to stop’?  I propose to you an answer that is cold comfort…never.  And that’s good!

Why do we need to be challenged at every corner?  Is it some sort of masochistic self improvement plan I believe in.  No, not really.  It’s just that our lives are a collection of acquaintances, feelings, experiences, revelations, and loves.  This collection is what makes you what you are today.  But the book of your life has not been fully written yet and you are not yet what you are going to become.

I cherish each and every obstacle and challenge that has come my way over the past 3 decades.  And it is not as though, that even having a modicum of success, I do not find that I have any fewer obstacles.  The difference is I am now having the tools to handle those obstacles…and my tool bag increases with new tools each week.

And I know there is something inside of me that is greater than the challenges before me. The reason I am not worried about those future obstacles?  Because I have solved larger problems in the past and by solving those problems I have the confidence that the universe will bring me the solution I need to serve my company, my clients, my employees, and my vendors.

So the next time a challenge or obstacle is put in front of you don’t wring your hands and say ‘Woe is me’.  Accept the challenge, believe in yourself and look forward to coming out through the other side… with a new tool in your bag.

To be a great man, it is necessary to turn to account all opportunities

To be a great man, it is necessary to turn to account all opportunities
Francois La Rochefoucauld

Last blog I ended with the statement ‘just making the most of every opportunity.’ and I thought I would take up the statement of opportunities in this blog.  I am latching onto each and every opportunity like a tick on the back of an east Texas dog.

I was thinking about the first part of the statement, To be a great man.  Is that something that is important?  Not really.  For me whether or not I am great will be determined after I am long gone and only if the foundation that I am laying for my professional and personal life is well planned and well executed.  I will let the CEO of the Lake Group at its 100th anniversary in August of 2049 make that determination.  I will be busy taking a dirt nap.

I jumped at the opportunity to get the property in Odessa.  Many thanks to Richard Atwell and the fine staff at Coastal Transport for their assistance in this.  We are about 85 percent complete and should fully operational in two weeks.  Six acres, nice shop, nice offices, 90 seconds from I-20, about 10 minutes from Halliburton, what’s not to like?

I jumped at the opportunity to be interviewed for the ‘Critical Mass for Business’ radio show hosted by Ric Franzi.  The show has about 200,000 listeners and can be found on the internet at criticalmassforbusiness.com.  My interview will be replayed on September 4th and also be available as a pod cast (whatever that means) and in the archives.  My wife and daughter thought my Texas drawl and humor were a touch over the top, but those of you who know me understand that’s where I am at my best…over the top.

Took possession of the first aluminum pneumatic trailer ever built by Gallegos.  I have decided to take this opportunity to take it on a road show over the first couple of weeks and show it off to clients.  We are working on an 8 stop 6 day trip to show it to potential clients.  We are expecting it to be one of our biggest sellers.

What will be the opportunities of the next quarter…the next year?  I suspect that Lake Truck Lines will grow to 85 units by the end of the year and 150 within the next 15 months.  Moving to a company truck platform is on the horizon. I predict that Lake Oilfield Services will grow to 10 pieces of equipment and sales of $10,000,000 over the next 15 months.  Jess Stephens is doing a fantastic job and my partner Bernard Rojano is planning this out step by step.  Hell, I’m just along for the ride.

Our deal with Gallegos?  Well, I said on the radio program, that I envision a dozen Gallegos trailer dealerships within the next 5 years in the Southwestern United States.  I still see that happening……all I have to do
is take advantage of the opportunity.

Work is man’s best friend

Work is man’s best friend – Lila West, Rock Hill, N.C.

Life is a long line of opportunities. Wealth is not about making money, but in making the man while he is making money.  Production, not destruction, leads to success – John Wicker

Yeah, I know, I am a slug for not keeping up with my blog.  I got it, now let’s move forward.

About 5 weeks ago I was flying to Houston for two speaking engagements (I know, ‘who would want to listen to a hick trucker talk?’) and had the opportunity to sit next to a wonderful person.  Now I know I should have known something was special immediately when boarding in the final section of SW Cattlecar airlines, there in aisle 1, was a middle seat.  I asked the gentleman (who did not look up) and a sweet elderly lady if I may sit there and she said yes.

Little did I know that she would be the highlight of not only my day but my year.  As I told her my story, she became more and more excited.  This was sweet because this was a 82 year old black grandmother.  She held my forearm and asked questions and by the end of the short flight, she told me something that has been pricking my brain ever since.  She said, ‘You keep talking to people, Mr. Cain.  You have something that people need to hear’.  Thank you Lila West, you have made a difference in my life.

A couple of weeks later after returning from two other speaking engagements (roll earlier hick comment) I find on my desk a large envelope full of quotes, newspaper articles on Lila and her own personal copy of ‘ The Richest Man in Babylon’ by George S. Clason.  Now even though I am self-depreciating, there are times I consider myself a captain of industry.  But reading this simple 100 page book opened my eyes to a number of things I have doing wrong for decades.  This was Lila’s own personal copy that she had had for years, with notes and highlights and underlines throughout.  It is a true treasure to me. Thank you Lila, I am now following the 5 rules of gold.

One of the common things I have noticed over the past year is the number of opportunities that have come my way. I am certain that Karma is making up for lost time by giving me more opportunities in one month than came my way in 3 decades.  But I also believe that I am becoming more aggressive in dealing with every opportunity that comes my way.

Barite is a difficult product to come by and is absolutely vital in the drilling industries.  In the past 4 months I have had two very reputable men come to me and ask that I handle their barite out of their mines in Mexico.  I have been smart enough (at least I make that statement at this point) to try to send these opportunities to others that are skilled in this area.  I am keeping my focus of the core of our business: the transportation of drilling materials, and the sale/lease of oilfield equipment.      We are turning the corner on both of these ends and look good to double our revenue by the end of the year.  Since we have shown 500 percent growth in the last 12 months, I think we are on track to achieve all the goals set out in our business plan.

We are opening up a 10 acre terminal in Odessa this month.  This should cement Lake Truck Lines entrance into the Permian Basin from April.  We should start having our first oilfield equipment in stock by the end of August in Odessa as well.

The first Joe P. Cain Excellence Scholarship Award was presented two weeks ago at the Desk and Derrick Club and I was so very impressed with the first recipient.  Please look at the videos on the website for that evening.  It was quite special.

I spoke at 4 different events over the past month and made many acquaintances and business contacts. In fact I head on Tuesday to see Burlington Northern Sante Fe Railroad in Ft. Worth for doing the hauling of approximately 1000 truckloads of frac sand a month out of SA.

Production, not destruction, leads to success.  I am glad I have all my self-destructive tendencies behind me.  No procrastination, no excuses……just making the most of every opportunity.  Thank you Ms. Lila West for the all the wisdom you imparted on me in a 50 minute flight.

Until next week……

You better be dancing when the spotlight hits you

“You better be dancing when the spotlight hits you”
Richard Jan Hill 2012

Nothing could be truer.  I was thinking about that earlier, about it taking 25 years to have any success and thirty to get some acknowledgement on our efforts.  I thank Rich for teaching this little lesson; it has made it more fun to put my time in while we wait for the results.

Well, let’s see if I can even chronicle everything that has happened…..

Oh yeah, speaking of Chronicle, We were written up in the San Antonio Business Journal yesterday.  Fantastic article, great photos (I still look old).  That came from Dave Jagges’ tireless efforts.  I predict we will be swamped with calls next week.

We entered in with a Mexican mineral rights owned to partner with them on five barite mines on 18,000 acres in northern Mexico.  Truly a serendipity experience if I ever saw one.  Share a cigar and a sniffer of cognac with me sometime and I will tell you the story.

Took delivery of our first 4 bulk barite tanks and are entertaining offers for their sale and/or lease.  They look so good on the property that I might not sell them.

Got the Permian Basin Division going.  There is still more work that needs to be done, but have got it started.

We had a great article in the Midland Reporter Times.  I could not be happier with the kind reporter that spent over an hour with me in Midland.

Mr. Gerardo Gallegos wants to open a JV (joint venture not Junior Varsity) trailer leasing business with Lake Oilfield.

And finally, I was asked to give a 20 minute speech to the Desk and Derrick Club of San Antonio.  It was a great, great evening.  But what made it special was being given the opportunity to use this event to launch the Joe P. Cain Memorial Excellence Award Scholarship.  Please watch the video of that evening here on our website on the “Updates” page.
Daddy:  I hope I made you proud with that one.

Dancing when the spotlight hits you, yeah, I think I have been doing the Tango with Lake for about 30 years now.  We are both ready for the big time.

Until next week


It is less important to redistribute wealth than it is to redistribute opportunity
Arthur H. Vandenburg

Opportunity….We all need it and we all need to recognize it.  A couple of weeks ago I led with the line ‘we need to recognize the opportunity in every difficulty instead of the difficulty in every opportunity’.  Some will tell you today that opportunity is only afforded to the one percenters.  I say ‘Hogwash’!  Opportunity is for everybody.  It is for the illegal alien crossing into this country planning for a better life.  It is for the inner city poor that has saved money, found scholarships and going to start their first semester of community college.  It’s for the convict getting out of prison.  It’s for the 27 year old kid that hopes to take a little trucking company a long way…..even if it takes decades to break through.

We’ve been given the opportunity to take over most of the Permian Basin for Halliburton.  My guess is that I will need twice the equipment than I first predicted (50 trucks vs. 25 trucks) within the next 90 days.  Now opportunity even when realized is never without sacrifice.  Going without has been a mantra of mine for the past 30 years. Sacrifice fully felt will eventually be acknowledged, and fed.  My bride, Lisa wonders when we are going to quit growing and stop spending and borrowing money.  My best answer?  We will quit growing when the opportunities stop.

I find new opportunities every day in new clients, new deals, new processes and new people.  Sometimes a new opportunity is presented for your benefit.  But far better is when YOU are the new opportunity for someone else.  I want to welcome Jose Rangel back to the company after being away.  I wanted to give Jose a fresh opportunity.  Lord knows he deserves it.  I feel better because I was able to offer hope to someone who made the most of their own opportunity. The really big opportunity for Lake Oilfield Services will be happening next week. And that will be worth writing about.

Until next week…

Permian Basin Division Opening

Prosperity is only an instrument to be used, not a deity to be worshiped.
Calvin Coolidge

Well, another milestone is upon us.  We just birthed the Permian Basin Division (PBD).  We expect some great things out there.  Not just revenues but personal growth of people.  Good people, people learning how to think through problems, making good decisions, planning out their actions.

I am expecting great things out of our Manager of PBD, Latio Fernandez.  Latio started as mechanics helper on the yard but Operations Manager Jerry Santos and I saw more out of him than just that as time went on.  He’s excited, a little nervous, but mostly excited about this opportunity.  He is not only changing states by moving to New Mexico, he’s changing time zones.  What won’t change is his work ethic.

On top of this I am having everyone write out their job descriptions and present them at the next staff meeting.  I will even be writing mine.  Have you really thought about all the things you do in your day to day job duties?  It’s enormous!  Sometimes it’s hard to describe what your job function is because you do so many things outside the box.  Sometimes your job description morphs over time.  I dispatched for 28 years, every load, and every day but today I have not dispatched a load in almost 2 years (Best two years of my life).  I typed every invoice but have not done one in a couple of months.

We are having Latio work on his job description, my guess it will be a living document that will be modified weekly for the better part of six months.  Our growth will give him the education he needs in order to fully understand his place in the organization and perhaps teach me how far he can go.  I guess we can all take a lesson from that.

We send the six trucks and Latio out on Wednesday (along with Jerry for the first week).  We will have a photo session along with a video interview done and posted on the website next week.

Exciting days and this is just the start…

Until Next Week

You must look for the Opportunity in every difficulty, not the difficulty in every opportunity

If we are to achieve a victorious standard of living today we must look for the opportunity in every difficulty instead of being paralyzed at the thought of the difficulty in every opportunity.

Good Morning All:
As I sit at my computer and start putting out this blog (which is about a week late), I start getting a little overwhelmed with what is going on here. I think to the words above written by Walter Cole (early twentieth century merchant and politician) and I think to how I must be bold, wise of course but bold certainly.  No one has ever accused me of being a shrinking violet.

Halliburton has just awarded us the sole transportation responsibilities for Hobbs and Artesia, New Mexico.  I highlight this because not only will we have no third party carriers to compete with but there will not be even any Halliburton company equipment.  All transportation has to be taken care of by Lake personnel.  I am quite proud that we have built such a solid reputation that Halliburton trusts us implicitly.  We start with 6 trucks and then grow to 20 by June 1 by including their Odessa facility.  Projections have us at being at 50 units for the Permian Basin Division by the end of the year.

Lake Oilfield just took a major step and will possibly be signing a lease on a mine to provide 20,000 tons per month of pure barite over the next 5 years.  The tests have come back and this mine is producing an outstanding product.  Negotiations are already in the works to have over half of this product spoken for. This is huge because Lake Truck Lines and Lake Oilfield would be able to bundle all of ourservices; Raw materials, bulk barite tanks, and transportation.  All handled with one call and paid for from one invoice.  A competitive advantage that would put us far ahead of our transportation competition.

Our cover story in the Tank Transport Journal came out last week and we are getting a lot of inquiries about our oilfield equipment and trailer sales.  I even had a few contemporaries of mine call me after learning about our move to San Antonio from the article.  Click Here for link to article.

And now the Big Story:  Speaking of San Antonio, Just got out of an very productive meeting with Henry Cisneros, El Hefe’ himself.  He made me feel so at ease, like every word I said he was hanging on.  He just kept on asking ‘How can I help you’, I was quite touched by his generosity.  Well in the meeting he got us on the phone with the President of the San Antonio Economic DevelopmentFoundation, Mario Hernandez.  He is arranging to put me on the Eagle Ford Task Force for the panel discussion here in March, there is another Eagle FordFoundation he wants me working on and finally wants me to help Palo AltoCollege by asking me to speak to the students and making the best of their opportunities.

But with all of this going on, you have to be able to determine what get’s your two most precious and limited resources:  Your Time and Your Money.  Thank God I have Bernard Rojano here to keep me grounded (he also mentioned I am blessed to have my bride Lisa to do the same).  Figuring out what projects we fund and which projects I put our attention to is the most critical part of what Bernard does.  So thank you Bernard, I would screw this thing up for sure without you.

Opportunities and difficulties:  They both have a valued place in our world, and we need them both.  I would not be the man I am today if I had not had twenty five years of swapping dollars and no real success.  The success I am blessed withtoday makes me appreciate each challenge I was given back in the 80’s, 90’s andearly 00’s (in the words of Barney Stinson of CBS’s ‘How I Met Your Mother’: Challenge Accepted!).  I am truly thankful for every difficulty I faced.

So what difficulties are you facing today: lack of funds, lack of time, lack of motivation, lack of clients?  The one thing you DO NOT HAVE A LACK OF: OPPORTUNITIES. They are out there by the gobs full.  Sometimes the opportunity is just the opportunity to face the challenge, get through it, and learn the lesson. Not all opportunities wind up giving you checks.  Sometimes you get something much more valuable than gold.

Until Next Week…

Adversity has made many a man great Who had he remained prosperous would only have been rich

Adversity has made many a man great Who had he remained prosperous would only have been rich – Maurice Switzer

Ever wondered where greatness comes from? Is it something from within, or is it the adulation of the masses, or is it the quiet confirmation of a loved one? Or must it be a combination of all three in order to be effective?

I think you must have all three in order for your greatness or the greatness of a team to really show. The last 6 months has been some pretty heady stuff, doubling of sales, tripling of assets, and more than doubling of trucks and trailers. I have tried to keep my feet on the ground (sometimes successfully, sometimes not), and just trying to stay ahead of the curve. My beautiful bride Lisa, took the time out to sit me down and tell me some really nice things that she was seeing when she stopped and said ‘I have always loved you, but for the first time I admire you. Confirmation that you are doing it right always signals a feeling of greatness.

Just recently I was asked to be a speaker and panelist for an upcoming Eagle Ford Oil Industry Symposium. My first thought was ‘Lord they must be hard up for speakers’, but then I thought about the background of Lake and my 3 decades as president and over 4 decades of working for the company and decided they must see something in me that I could not. Knowing that others see your greatness lets me know that somehow, someway what we are doing right here at Lake…well we are doing it right and our greatness becomes validated.

And then finally, it hits you. Your company, the little engine that could, has built momentum, has gotten the clients that demand the highest level of service, built the assets you need in order to advance and most importantly has attracted the kind of partners/associates/managers/employees that by their very presence says ‘Heck yes, we want to be a part of this’. That’s when you know you have attained greatness. You have gotten to your first goal.

Next week I will share with you where your next step should be. Also there are about 4 really big things that are in the works this week, which I will share with you next week.

Until then…

Everthing Is Going According To Schedule

It has been a couple of weeks since I beat on the keyboard and a number of things have happened and a few more are just a few more steps away before being completed.

First off, Jerry Santos and I met with Antonio Medina down at Halliburton in Laredo to go over the final designs of three of our most ambitious designs: the Gallegos 1680, the bulk barite tank, and the triple pod aluminum bulk trailer. It looks like we are all moving according to schedule and we should be quoting on the aluminum trailers and bulk barite tanks within just a couple of weeks.

Halliburton has also asked us to take over the transportation duties at their facilities in Beeville and La Grange, Texas. That now brings to five the number of Halliburton facilities that Lake is the prime carrier at. Outstanding Job Jerry!

It looks as though Lake will be opening up a permanent terminal in Midland Texas for the exclusive use of Halliburton/Baroid. This could be huge for Lake due to the massive expansion of the Permian Basin fields, Halliburton’s increased use of our assets, and the shortage of experienced dedicated equipment out there. We will start with 5 units and I suspect will be up to 20 by the end of spring.

Started the preparation of the back five acres for Lake Oilfield Services. Hope to have it level and surfaced by April 1st. Our plans are to have 3 service bays by the end of the summer to take care of all the fabrication and maintenance work due to occur because of LOS.

Lake is the cover story for Tank Transport Magazine for February. This issue will focus on the oilfield industry. Thanks to Dave Jagge, our Publicist for putting this together.  Both Lake Truck Lines and Lake Oilfield Services are major sponsors for the 5th Annual Coalition Blowout on January 28th.  Over 500 of our clients will be in attendance.

Wow!  That would be enough….but we have even more going on.

Until next week…