At an industry event last night I was talking with a colleague about the industry and the fact that many drivers don’t seem to want to improve themselves once they begin driving. They go to class to get their licence because they have to but don’t try to upgrade themselves outside of that. They assume they will learn everything they need to know at the school and many of us know they couldn’t be any further from the truth with that thinking.
On the business side it is amazing to me how many owner operators have time to worry about new changes in the industry but aren’t looking to do anything about them. For instance many owner operators are upset about the new mandated law for log books coming in 2017. They feel this new law will stop them making money if they are not somehow able to fudge their log books. The question is how much are you really making by cheating?
In both of these scenarios these drivers are incorrect, not that they don’t have the right to worry about the future or don’t like the classroom situation. It is the fact they are not trying to make their situations better by learning how to improve those situations.
In the old days there wasn’t so much to learn, you shifted gears, delivered on time, and were done. These days the industry is quite different. Rules and regulations are abundant, customers are placing more demands on the industry, and technology is taking over many responsibilities. A driver needs to be much more educated and work a lot smarter than they did in the past.
Business is said to be the biggest game in the world and in my mind it’s true. Think of it as the Olympics that everyone can participate in. The reason it is marked as the biggest game is because you can never rest on your past achievements. The way you ran last year may not work this year as the industry changes. It is important for the business owner to be continually changing their business and improving the way they operate.
In the case of the owner operator not wanting to use new technology it is important to start looking at their operation and learn how to improve it while implementing technology. There are owner operators making very good money and doing well. When talking with those we find that those particular owner operators have specialized in their services and are continually investing in their business.
The important thing to remember is that in today’s transportation industry a driver or owner operator need to keep improving themselves and the way they operate. That means getting information on how to improve wherever they can and constantly looking at their business or careers so they can find areas to improve. Nobody will want to improve as much as you do so make sure you are constantly looking for ways to make things better. Your career depends on it!
About the Author
Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, podcast host, and speaker. TTSAO also known as the Truck Training Schools Association of Ontario has certified member schools in the truck training vocation ensuring quality entry level drivers enter the transportation industry. To learn more about the TTSAO or to find a certified school in your area visit www.ttsao.com