GCP Member Feature: Bonnie Speed

Updated: Nov 16, 2020

Bonnie Speed is a full-service logistics company headquartered in Cleveland who serves its customers by servicing with excellence and building connectivity in meaningful and intentional ways. When the executive team set “pivot” as their 2020 word of intention, little did they know how impactful and necessary it would be to move through the year.

As the spread of COVID-19 shut down non-essential businesses in Northeast Ohio, the logistics company’s innovation team sprung to action, checking-in on customers. On the business front, they pivoted to a residential focus as their clients were rapidly adapting to a work-at-home environment.

Internally, they relied on a combination of remote contingency planning, video meetings, weekly calls with drivers, and surveys to stay connected and keep their business going. As an essential business that remained open, Bonnie Speed provided care kits to team members and drivers as a thank-you for the commitment and dedication during the pandemic. The company hosted a leadership meeting on mental health and instituted a well-being day for team members, encouraging team members to take the time to care for themselves.

But that was not all – as the business learned about the community needs, it instituted team lunches to help support local restaurants. They donated freight services to the Cleveland Food Bank as they grappled with unprecedented demand, moving 32,000 lbs of food in April & May.

“COVID-19 was a litmus test – it showed me that the culture we have is exactly what we need for continued success” ~ Kenya Guess, CEO of Bonnie Speed

While Bonnie Speed was hard hit by COVID-19, 2020 has resulted in transformational cultural change for the business, including a heightened awareness around equity. All these pivots ultimately resulted in the creation of the Bonnie Give Back account.

To date, the program has provided a variety of community services including free delivery of masks and PPE, continued partnership with the Cleveland Food Bank, and delivery of overages of Girl Scout Cookies to healthcare workers and teachers in partnership with Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio. Bonnie Speed is pursuing a FEMA certification to assist in crises.

Business activity has picked up since June and Bonnie Speed intends to take the lessons learned during this crisis to continue to innovate, collaborate and pursue creative solutions to meet customer needs.

“I don’t want normal, I want better, and we’re thinking about what does better look like” ~ Kenya Guess, CEO of Bonnie Speed.

Over her tenure as CEO of Bonnie Speed, Kenya Guess has turned to the Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) several times for community introductions and a read on business and community sentiment. This year she is taking her relationship with GCP one step further by serving on GCP Business Growth Services INGEAR Committee. The committee will provide guidance and support to the GCP and its partners. Industry leaders will identify needs and opportunities that will shape GCP’s suite of services, accelerate the region’s economic recovery, and define GCP’s business growth and development program priorities and objectives.

Learn more about GCP Business Growth Services and its activities to benefit the Northeast Ohio business community via the 2020 Semi-Annual Report.

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1240 Huron Road East, Suite 300

Cleveland, Ohio 44115

(216) 592-2208