02 Jul Meet the Team: David Abell, CTB
We sure hope you’re enjoying the Meet the Team series. It’s been a lot of fun hearing from the team members about their likes, dislikes, and favorites. This week we’re featuring David Abell, Managing Director at Squirrel Works and Chief Marketing Officer for AM Transport. He’s been with AMT for nearly 9 years.
Color: I am a stereotypical male. I like blue. My wife always messes with me because she claims all of my dress shirts are some variant of blue.
Music: I really like all kinds of music. Pre-children, I attended quite a few live concerts. Here are a few notable ones.
- Garth Brooks (5 times)
- Snoop Dog
- Mumford and Sons
- Chris Stapleton
- Ludacris & Chingy
- REO Speedwagon (3 times)
- Eric Church
- Dave Matthews Band (3 times)
- Def Leppard
- Chris Rock
Sport: Anyone who knows me knows that I’m not a sports person. I have to try really really really hard to hold a conversation about sports. I respect people who are big sports fans though. It’s such a huge commitment and time investment.
Podcast: I’m an OG podcast fan. Tim Ferriss is probably my favorite one. There are so many out there to choose from now. I just really like the way Tim interviews and provides value to his audience. I think there is a science behind being a good host and asking good questions.
Beer or Wine: Right now beer is probably Heineken NA or Busch NA. Something notable about my personality is I have a habit of becoming fixated on things. I heard this podcast where a guy decided to quit drinking alcohol for a year. He simply wanted to see if he could do it and what effects it would have on his life. I decided to take up this challenge. The last beer I had was in Canada on September 19th, 2019. I do enjoy both beer and wine. But currently, I’m pretty committed to this challenge.
Skittles or M&Ms: M&Ms are marginally better than Skittles, but I could probably go the rest of my life without eating either.
Power Ranger: I’m trying to remember . . . I think the Red Ranger was the cool one? I’m sure I’ll get a chance to go back through them with my kids.
I’ll be married 9 years on New Year’s Eve. I have two adorable kids. Claire is 5 and Jack is almost 4.
What do you think about when you are alone in the car?
I like to think I’m a pretty alert driver. It probably comes from my military training to always be on the lookout for an IED or someone trying to shoot a rocket at you! These days that skill transfers into thoughts like these: Wow, when did he paint his house? or Man, they really need to mow their yard. If I’m in Olney, it’s immediately DOESN’T ANYONE KNOW HOW TO USE A TURN SIGNAL? Hmmm, maybe I need to think about how to be a less critical driver . . .
If you could be any animal in the world what would you be?
Definitely a tiger. Didn’t you watch Tiger King?
How long have you been in transportation? How did you end up working for AMT?
August 1st, I’ll have been here for 9 years. My undergrad is in IT, and at the time they were building out their technical capabilities and needed someone to help them through it. It was one of those friend-of-a-friend type deals, and here we are.
What do you do at AM Transport?
I’m the Managing Director for AMT Squirrel Works, as well as, the Chief Marketing Officer for AM Transport.
What apps, gadgets, etc. can you not live without at work?
- Laptop (I don’t think I could go back to a desktop at this point)
- Google Phone
- Google Chrome
- Noise cancelling headphones
- Internet connection: I’ve used this set up to work all over (India, Paris, Portugal, Belize, and Panama).
What’s the best Christmas gift you ever received; the best gift you’ve ever given?
I’m not really sure about the best gift I’ve received. I try not to focus a lot on materialistic things. The best Christmas gift I’ve ever given is a great story! My dad always enjoyed messing around with scratch-off lottery tickets. I gave him a bunch for Christmas one year, and I put a gag gift winner ticket in with them. He opened them, and casually scratched a few off here and there throughout the morning and eventually got to the fake winner. He was so excited when he scratched it off, but I immediately felt terrible. After all that, it ended up being a pretty funny Christmas that we still laugh about.
What’s the funniest thing that’s happened to you recently?
Since we have been working remotely lately, I was on a video call with a vendor a few weeks ago when my kids stormed into the room and jumped on my lap and proceeded to talk before I even knew what was going on. Jack told them that he loved them multiple times and Claire was doing mic tests and posing for the camera. These are the times we are living in now.
If someone gifted you an elephant, what would you do with it?
Probably Facebook Marketplace. If not, I’d see if Tyler Boyles wanted to add it to his funny farm. I’ve got backyard chickens and they are more than enough work for me.
What are your thoughts on garden gnomes?
I’m a fan.
How do you recharge?
I really like to travel and read. I have a problem shutting my brain off, and traveling helps me use those resources for something else. I also love to learn new things through reading. I like to play with my children as well. I think having the ability to play is underrated. As we become adults, we forget how to play. There is something about just playing cars on the floor or throwing a frisbee around the backyard with my 5-year-old that helps put things in perspective.
What are you currently reading, or what do you recommend?
I’m almost done with Dan Crenshaw’s book, Fortitude. It’s a little political but a good reminder about perspective. I’m an avid reader, but I’m terrible at recommending books. I’m the last person to ask about fiction as well. I usually read a novel every couple of years.
What’s your superpower?
I’m really good at tuning my kids’ whining out. I can be deep in thought or reading and completely tune them out. It drives my wife crazy. Especially when we are on a long car ride. It’s good for them and builds character.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
I’ve been given lots of good advice. Here are a few of my favorites.
- Stay humble. None of us do this alone. There is no successful person who didn’t receive help along the way. People follow humble leaders, and end up resenting those who aren’t.
- Learn to be a really good listener. Seriously. Quit worrying about what you’re going to say next.
- Be very selective in choosing extracurricular activities. Everything is not an opportunity. Being super busy isn’t a badge.
- Don’t interrupt people when they’re talking. It’s rude and a bad habit.