It’s okay to complain, but what are you doing about it?

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 Truck on highwayhave 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

Toronto Truck Driving School Becomes Member of TTSAO

Please welcome Toronto Truck Driving School to the list of accredited schools with TTSAO. They can be contacted through the information below.

Toronto Truck Driving School
Contact: Supinder Wraich
Email: admin@torontotruckdrivingschool.com
Phone: 416 675.7500 Fax. 416-674-7908
Address: 225 Claireport Crescent, Toronto ON M9W 6P7
Website: www.torontotruckdrivingschool.com

Toronto Truck Driving School

What’s Your Reason Behind Your Rule?

John comes into the dispatch office with his map book, lays it on the table and proceeds to tell the dispatcher, ” See these pages that start with the letter N? I don’t go there, don’t ask me, don’t send me, because it isn’t happening! I don’t run the Eastern Seaboard!” The dispatcher looks at him and says, ” No problem!” John says, ” Good, now that we’re clear where is my load going?” The dispatcher says,” Home!” John is now sitting at home for two days because they don’t have a load where he wants to go.

Betty is a new driver with one year of experience. This is the first winter that she has driven a truck in the snow and is nervous in her first big snow storm. The weather is bad and traffic is moving slow. She has turned down the radio and is putting all her efforts into concentrating on the road. She wants to stop and pull off the road, but the message from dispatch keeps turning in her head, “This is an important load do the best you can, they need the freight.” Betty keeps going against her better judgement.

I often talk about operating under your own rules because it helps

Blonde woman truck driver
s.

drivers understand their comfort levels and how they play a part in the success of their careers. Unfortunately many drivers don’t understand how to implement those rules for themselves or communicate them to the company. Even worse is when rules are used to avoid certain situations that the driver may not want to do, like running to the Eastern United States.

Running by your own rules is meant to help you realize your strengths, keep you safe, and understand your limitations. For instance, one of my rules is for winter driving. If I am driving in a snowstorm and cannot safely drive more than 40 kilometres per hour then I will park the truck and wait until the conditions get better before continuing on the trip. Now most drivers feel they must continue in bad weather or fail to communicate to their dispatch that they have stopped due to bad conditions. If you don’t communicate when you first stop and when you begin to move again then it sounds like a lie or a story instead of a safety move.

The situation with John above was very common in my time of driving and still is in the industry. Drivers telling the company where they want to go and when. They believe this is running by their own rules when in truth they are running by their own agenda. Dispatchers are famous for letting drivers sit at home for days as they wait for freight to come in for their preferred area of choice. There are two problems with that. A driver may be leaving lots of money on the table because they don’t want to run a certain area. Two a company will have to hire more drivers than required in order to have freight lanes covered properly for their customers.

My rule for running places like New York City was that I will go to those areas, but prefer not to sleep there if possible. I communicate that early on and try to work with the company to ensure the freight and myself will be safe and secure. Explaining why and be willing to work with the carrier has never been a problem as long as it was explained from a safety standpoint and not just out of choice. Setting rules for how you run and communicating properly is what a professional driver does. You need to work with a carrier to ensure their customer’s freight is delivered in a timely manner. A professional driver knows what their limitations are and why they have them set in place. Don’t leave money on the table or for the wrong reasons because you have an agenda.

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

Mike McCarron receives first ever lifetime membership from TTSAO

Mike McCarron received the first ever lifetime membership from TTSAO. Mike and LeftLane Associates was hired by by TTSAO to lead them at their strategy session. The main goal of the sessions was to lay the foundation for the direction of the TTSAO.

You can learn more about the TTSAO at www.ttsao.com

What Does Mandatory Entry Level Training Mean For You?

Mandatory Entry Level Training has been in the forefront of the training industry over the last couple of years and made national headlines on television this week. Mandatory Entry Level Training or M.E.L.T. as it is known is a program with many partners from Government Agencies to truck driving schools and other members of the transportation industry. TTSAO has been at the forefront in helping to craft new regulations for the future. Although details are due out any time now, parties involved are confident that it will help the industry and improve safety on the roads in the future.

In a training session the other day I was asked by a student how M.E.L.T. would affect them and their careers? After all, students in certified schools already have to complete a certain number of hours of training in order to be qualified to drive. The problem is the uncertified schools that are looming in the shadows and producing unqualified drivers in the industry. It doesn’t help to hear news articles on the news each day such as the deadly crash that happened in Toronto the other day. It is being reported for the accident however not confirmed that one of the truck drivers may have been at fault.

In answer to my student’s question I could have just said it will make things better for the industry but there is much more than that. Oh sure it will offer certificates for students to show they have mastered certain skills. It will ensure all students have been trained on all aspects of the position and road types from highway driving to navigating on city streets. The largest benefit in my mind will be the movement and vision of our industry from dumping ground to skilled trade.

It has been a long time since the industry has tried to improve the view of truck drivers to the public. Is M.E.L.T. enough to do the trick is yet to be seen but it certainly is going in the right direction. Certified training however is not enough to change the face of the industry. Changing the regulations is one positive step but will never Truck on highwaybe enough without the dedication of the driver. As an instructor in the industry and knowing many of the instructors that work for certified schools we do our best to provide quality training to students. For myself and I can’t speak for others, I offer real world training in my courses and encourage leadership from the beginning of the course right through to the end of their career. I know the instructors at many certified schools take training seriously and want their students to be successful and safe once licensed and in the industry.

At the end of the day the safety, vision, and standards in the industry will be decided by the driver. We can train the drivers to the top degree but if the driver or student doesn’t believe it once on the road by themselves then it will never work. I look forward to seeing how the new regulations will look and what they will do for the industry, but it will take all of us to bring this industry to the professionalism many of us know it to be.
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

Three Keys to Becoming a Successful Owner Operator

Drivers ask two questions when I deliver courses or presentations about becoming an owner operator. The first question is from the new drivers asking why they should become owner operators? The second questions is from existing owner operators asking how to be successful as an owner operator? Everyone has different reasons and criteria for getting into business but there are three keys that should be looked at in order to make good business decisions or evaluate the opportunity of business ownership.

Key 1-Mindset

The first key to any business and in my mind the most important factor in becoming an owner operator is mindset. This key alone can make or break a business or determine whether to embark in a business. Without the right mindset you won’t be able to properly process information on how to start your venture successfully. If you already are an owner operator lack of mindset as a business owner will stop you from growing a profitable business and possibly cause you to go bankrupt if not properly managed. We see it all the time in the industry where an owner operator starts their business, begins to get large income cheques and spends the money on non-required items like motorcycles and pick up trucks. Those folks aren’t thinking like business owners, they’re thinking like lottery winners!

Key 2-Income

The second key is income. This key ties into the one above in that a business mindset will help an owner operator decide on the areas and runs to focus on. Instead of operating in areas that seem easy and less stressful a proper business owner will decide which run will bring in the most profit and best income potential. Instead of looking at the amount of work involved with a delivery an owner operator should look at the income and potential for specialization by getting involved with a certain delivery style. It may be the income boost that the business owner needs and also help them to create a new service. Looking at the way you’re paid, your delivery areas, and the work involved in a delivery can be the difference between a profitable business and a bankrupt business in the world of trucking.

Key 3- Operations

The third key is the operation of the business. Many of us start our businesses on a shoe string budget and as a sole owner. We do everything such as driving, administration, and maintenance and often wonder what we got ourselves into. This is a normal feeling for all business owners, but there is a way to get over this. Taking your ttsao truck at sunset largebusiness seriously, planning for the future, and taking steps to grow your business for the long term is the key to a successful business. It is important to watch the costs associated with your business, but if you only focus on costs you can stifle growth. The successful business owner must focus on both.

So if you are thinking about becoming an owner operator focus on these three keys when evaluating information and create a business plan that will solve problems for these issues. If you are already an owner operator then focusing on these areas and evaluating your business on a regular basis will show you opportunities for growth and where your business may be costing you money. Look at your business as the CEO that you are and you will find you become the successful owner operator you want to be in the future.

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

The Money Might be in the Work!

You’re sitting in class for a trucking school listening to the presentation being made by a recruiter thinking how much money will I make if I sign on with them? They go through their equipment list, their benefits, and training routine. So far it seems the same as the carrier that came in last week and then the recruiter says one thing, their pay rate. Your ears perk up and you sit straighter in your chair. At this point you are excited and begin to listen a little more intently. Then the final piece of information is given to you, you wait for the recruiter to spell it out and they do. They tell you the work involved in order to make that terrific salary. Your jaw drops and you have a sinking feeling in your stomach. Inside you say to yourself, ” They want me to do all that? No way!”

This is a normal situation for many students that are looking to enter ttsao truck at sunset largethe transportation industry. The situation started back in the eighties with “no touch freight” and has progressed even more as time goes on. Back then we had much of our freight on the floor and it was the driver’s job in most cases to unload the freight or stack it on pallets on the receiving end. There is nothing like standing at the back of a trailer with a full load of magazines on the floor knowing it is your job to unload them. Many drivers started looking for companies that had “no touch freight” because they didn’t like to hand-bomb, it was too back breaking! In today’s trucking industry much of the freight is no longer hand-bombed on a trailer with a few exceptions but has that made us lazy as drivers. What is worse is that you could be leaving big money on the table if you are looking for easy work in this business.

We all get to a point where our bodies will tell us that we have had enough when it comes to back breaking work. Like any industry the more you do something the more you get used to it and don’t see it as the same workload as someone who has never done the job. Think of an old brick layer that has been doing the job over many years, he no longer thinks about the work involved. His work is now an art that he can perform without thought. What I am getting at is that many of the best companies, the highest pay, and the best equipped carriers have some hard work involved. If you shy away from hard work you may be leaving big money on the table.

When I started in the transportation industry I was on the moving side where we moved people from house to house everyday. Some days I would do two to three moves in a day. When you do that professionally you don’t think of moving the way most people feel about moving themselves. You develop a system and go through the motions until the job is complete. When I hauled magazines we had to deliver to independent distributors, that meant we had to carry the bundles in one by one. At the chemical company our deliveries meant we had to push large drums into a location and then deliver the contents. When I was in the city many of our deliveries were either hand delivered or we walked them in to save time.

Even though these companies had us do hard work I look back over my career as a driver and they were some of the best companies that I have ever worked for. They had the best systems, paid great pay, had great equipment, and respected the work done by their employees. Not one of those companies did I leave due to the hard work involved with the position. So if you are trying to stay away from hard work you may be looking at the transportation industry in the wrong light. You could be leaving big money, a great work environment, and unique benefits on the table.

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

TTSAO Gives Thumbs Up to MELT-Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  

May 31st, 2016 -­‐ Hamilton, ON  –  The  Ministry  of  Transportation ttsao logo of  Ontario  (MTO)  was  quick  to  react  to  the   Truck  Training  Schools  Association  of  Ontario  (TTSAO)  for  not  endorsing  the  draft  standards  of  Mandatory  Entry   Level  Driver  Training  (MELT)  in  Ontario.  After  numerous  meetings,  since  the  TTSAO’s  response  to  the  MTO  and   the  transportation  community,  the  association  has  agreed  to  endorse  the  current  draft  standard.  Senior   representatives  from  MTO  has  made  the  commitment  to  ensure  all  concerns  raised  by  TTSAO  will  be  addressed   prior  to  the  full  implementation  of  MELT  in  2017.

“Our  executive  team  and  board  of  directors  along  with  the  TTSAO  Carrier  Group  were  all  very  pleased  with  the   end  result  of  the  recent  conversations  and  commitment  of  the  MTO.  They  have  agreed  to  a  timeline  to  ensure   the  concerns  raised  by  our  members  will  be  dealt  with”  said  Kim  Richardson,  Chairman  of  the  Board  for  The   TTSAO.

In  a  recent  press  release  TTSAO  could  not  endorse  the  draft  standard  because  of  key  issues  still  being  left
unclear  to  the  association  and  its  membership.  These  concerns  included:

  • -­‐ Instructor  qualification  criteria
  • -­‐ Minimum  requirements  for  training  on  standard  transmission
  • -­‐ A  clearer  definition  of  on-­‐line  training
  • -­‐ Road  test  booking  procedures  and  vehicle  configuration  for  testing
  • -­‐ Night  time  training
  • -­‐ Maximum  training  hours  per  day
  • -­‐ Clearer  definition  of  hour  breakdown  of  in  yard  training
  • -­‐ Verification  of  training  hours

Mike  Millian  President  of  the  Private  Motor  Truck  Council  (PMTC)  and  board  of  director  of  the  TTSAO   commented,  “The  MTO  has  been  great  to  work  with  through  this  entire  process.  Their  engagement  with  all   stakeholders  has  been  appreciated,  and  necessary,  to  ensure  this  standard  was  a  close  to  perfect  as  possible.   Their  recent  response  to  the  TTSAO’s  concerns  was  appreciated,  and  showed  their  commitment  to  ongoing   engagement  with  all  stakeholders.  We  look  forward  to  continuing  to  work  with  the  MTO  on  MELT  going   forward”.

Some  of  TTSAO’s  issues  fall  under  the  Private  Career  College’s  and  the  Ministry  of  Training  Colleges  and   Universities.  The  TTSAO  and  MTO  have  agreed  to  work  together  along  with  the  TTSAO  Carrier  Group,  membered   insurance  companies  of  TTSAO  and  other  industry  stakeholders  to  ensure  all  areas  are  addressed.

Geoff  Topping  Chairman  of  the  TTSAO  Carrier  Group  and  Senior  Director  of  HR  at  Challenger  Motor  Freight   commented  “Great  progress  has  been  made  in  this  process  to  insure  the  MELT  Standards  meet  the  needs  of  all   Stakeholders  and  most  importantly  help  the  province  of  Ontario  to  be  leaders  in  Transportation  Safety.  Various   groups  and  associations  have  all  worked  together  with  the  MTO  to  insure  that  this  standard  will  produce  high   quality  drivers”.

The  TTSAO,  along  with  their  industry  partners  believe  that  keeping  on  track  with  the  timeline  set  by  the  Minister
of  transportation  is  important  for  all  involved  and  the  new  standard  for  entry  level  commercial  driver  is  critical
to  eliminating  the  licensing  mills  and  ensuring  entry  level  commercial  drivers  are  properly  educated.

For  more  information  about  this  Press  Release:  

Kim  Richardson  –  Chairman,  TTSAO  –  KRTS  office  –  1-­‐800-­‐771-­‐8171  x  201  or  cell  –  905-­‐512-­‐0254  or  by  email  at
krichardson@krway.com

Mike  Millian  –  President,  Private  Motor  Truck  Council  of  Canada  –  Office:  905-­‐827-­‐0587,  Cell:  519-­‐932-­‐0902  or
by  email  at  trucks@pmtc.ca

Geoff  Topping  -­‐  Director  of  HR,  Challenger  Motor  Freight  519-­‐653-­‐9770  ext.  2624  or  by  email  at   GeoffT@challenger.com

Charlie  Charalambous  –  Director  of  Public  Relations,  TTSAO  –  Northbridge  Office  -­‐  1-­‐800-­‐265-­‐7173  or  cell  (416)
473-­‐3986  or  by  email  at  charlie.charalambous@nbfc.com

Are You Trying Too Hard to Get The Perfect Job?

Finding the perfect company to work for in your career can be a daunting experience and one that many folks may never find over the span of their careers. We all want that perfect place to call home. We want good salary, benefits, and a professional culture. We want a safe and stress free environment so that we can go home to enjoy the fruits of our hard work with our families. If someone says they don’t want that then they’re lying! That’s a pretty tall order for anyone to find in one employer especially a new person. This is where the problem may lie in new people entering the transportation industry?

There is a recruiting shortage, no news there! In Ontario we have a program called “Second Careers” which helps people who are transitioning to a new career, trying to gain new employment, or looking for new opportunities to get into the the transportation industry. It is set up to help the industry and get people back to work. The problem is that the people are not always young and may be looking to improve their careers from the last employer by finding the perfect company.

In the transportation industry like many other industries you have to ttsao truck at sunset largework your way up the ladder. As a driver you must get competent training, become a master behind the wheel, have good people skills, and a host of other traits to make you successful. It is not a process that you can rush, but can be mastered over time with hard work and dedication. Many of the new people coming into the industry however are not looking to start over in their careers. Many are mid-life and looking to improve so they can advance from where they were before they started in the industry. I see it all the time in my training sessions with new students, they are all trying to find the perfect job out of the gate. In fact this seems to be a trait of the new generation from many employment reports.

If you are one of those new drivers that are looking for that perfect opportunity then my suggestion to you is just get started. You may not want to start at the bottom but you have to start somewhere and you can’t start at the top unless you start your own business. If you are in a training school it is very easy to get started if you follow the advice of the instructors and work with the carriers that associate with the school. You only have so many choices as a new driver so choose the one closest to the goals you have for an employer. Just pick one! The drivers that get into trouble when looking for a job are the ones that try to beat the system and go right to the top. They usually end up working for someone that doesn’t treat them right or causing them larger problems.

You may have to get creative to get a great job but it can be done. If you want to be home more then try finding an employer that has a flexible open board. If you want to try different opportunities find a company that has different types of equipment. Just get that experience that will help you move forward in your career. Get out there for two years, learn all you can and you will see that many opportunities will open to you after that. You have to start somewhere so just pick a respectable carrier and get started!
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

Striving for Success in Training

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