Three tenets of building a successful self-driving company

A message from the Torc CEO

As a new decade begins, I’ve spent some time reflecting on some truisms as CEO of Torc for the last 15 years. There are many things that can be attributed to our success so far, but I believe the following three are critical.

Winning teams 

Surround yourself with good people focused on a common mission. For us, our mission has been saving lives through self-driving technology and our ‘Winning Teams’ core value. We would not be here today without the many Torc’rs that have committed themselves to our mission. Good people are a prerequisite for success. 

It’s a marathon

Great things are not accomplished overnight. I’m reminded that we started this journey in the 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge; well before the “hype” of autonomous vehicles and even before the creation of the SAE levels of automation. The Torc team has grown through continuous, dedicated work. If you run a marathon as if it is a sprint, you will collapse before you cross the finish line. This endeavor is a marathon.

Create Value

Technology has no impact without a business case. If companies focus on the “coolness” of a technology and not on the value it creates for its customer base, there is little impact. For the last decade, Torc has shipped self-driving products to customers across several markets. I believe the trucking industry is the next mover in the self-driving space.

In 2019, Torc joined the Daimler Trucks family to focus on bringing automated trucks to market to help transform an industry that so many of us depend on every day. The effort will be a challenge, but Torc is used to creating solutions that have never been accomplished before.

I believe we have the people, the drive, and the business case to succeed in our continuing mission to help make the future of transportation safer.

Michael Fleming, CEO of Torc