The Women in Fleet profile series introduces fleet managers to some of the most influential women in fleet. Every month, we will get to know another positive force in the fleet industry.
This month, we spoke with Lori Olson, Pulse fleet sales director and VP of Kinetech, LLC.
Getting into Fleet
Olson is a newer member of the fleet industry, with just over five years with Kinetech. But, fleet was a natural fit for her.
“As my husband, Mark, and I prepared for our youngest daughter to transition to kindergarten, I also started to consider where to transition into full-time work. I was working part-time in non-profit and Mark owned and managed the Pulse distribution. He suggested I come on board to branch Pulse sales into the fleet industry,” she recalled. “Several of his dealerships had a fleet side, which is what inspired this new avenue of sales for the company.”
Olson quickly learned that there was much more to fleet than what the dealerships offered.
“I joined NAFA, exhibited at the 2015 NAFA I&E, learned about the Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association that same year, and have stayed actively involved in both organizations ever since,” Olson said. She is also a member of the Women in Fleet Management task force.
And, like most of us in fleet, Olson wears several hats. “As it relates to the organization for whom I work, I lead the fleet sales and distribution channels,” she said.
Olson is constantly looking forward, stating, “My greatest success story is still being written.”
When she entered the fleet industry, there was an open road ahead of her and no map.
“In the past five years, I’ve built a thriving avenue of fleet sales from the ground up for my company by being willing to learn and build relationships with everyone I meet. Every day that my team and I get to keep not only a fleet driver but also those around them safer on the road with our product, is my greatest success,” she said.
Olson attributes her continued success in fleet to a constant strive to be the best; she doesn’t like to lose.
“I’m motivated by my own fear of failure! I don’t like to lose or fail, because when I do, others lose too. Supporting my employees, clients, and friends in fleet also means helping them all strive to do their own personal best.
Olson’s advice for women currently in fleet or considering it is positive: “Just jump in! This is a vibrant and ever-changing industry with the most generous people I’ve ever met, who ultimately want to succeed every bit as much as you do. There are mentorship programs, webinars, and conferences that will help you meet new folks and learn what is coming around the corner,” she said.
Get to Know Me
Experience is only part of our story and what someone likes to read, watch, and listen to can help paint a fuller picture of their personality. Here are some of Olson’s favorites:
- Book: “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. We read and listen to a lot of stories in our house, and this is one our girls introduced me to. I absolutely love how it connects history, fantasy, adventure, and a little moral character building in a wonderfully told story,” she said.
- Movie: “There are many good ones, but it would probably be either The Great Gatsby or Moulin Rouge. I really appreciate how Baz Luhrmann combines those eras in history with modern music, making the movies feel engaging and relevant,” Olson said.
- Songs: “One is just not possible! I really love music in general. Classical, pop, soundtracks from musicals, a little jazz, religious, new age, even a little country. I’d say the only music I am not so fond of is rap or hip hop,” she said.
- You May Not Know: “I grew up as the youngest of five kids and there were two things we all enjoyed: water skiing and music. From the time I was three, I did both (and still do). Most Sundays, you’ll find me playing my violin with our church band, coaching our middle daughter on the violin, and sometimes playing duets with our other two daughters who play the piano,” Olson concluded.