Can a Safety Mindset Make You a Rock Star?

If you are in search of a new position in trucking then having a safety mindset may be the advantage you need. Often I talk about the importance of having leadership skills to put you ahead of the pack in your career and safety would fit into that category. Many students going through training facilities may be presented to with safety in mind, but do they truly understand the importance of taking safety seriously?

One of the largest issues I have come across when in training environments is students trying to memorize systems in order to pass their exams. What happens when you memorize things? Memorization may help you remember information but it also can stop you from recognizing hazards. If you have ever done the test of reading a sentence that is totally spelled wrong, but when you read it you fix the mistakes in your mind and the sentence reads correctly you will understand what I mean. Memorizing safety systems is the same thing. If you memorize an inspection routine like you would a song you begin to go through the motions, possibly missing important safety issues.

A recent article I was reading on wheel separations showing that incidents are on the rise for 2016 mentioned that pre-trip inspections and the torquing processes may be part of the problem. Drivers are required to stop after having a wheel or tire repair to have the torque checked to ensure the wheel has been installed properly and remains fastened. But how many are doing that after a repair? How many companies are supporting the drivers in having that inspection done? I know as a driver many times you are pressured to get the load delivered after a breakdown as it may already be late due to the initial incident. If a repair network has not been established then where does a driver go? Who pays to have the torque checked? All of these questions may cause some companies or drivers to bypass the secondary inspection process.

 

This is why that safety mindset may be the best advantage a driver ttsao truck at sunset largemay have. You don’t need to have the answers, but you need to have the knowledge to ask the questions. If you know that you need to have a secondary inspection done after a wheel repair at least you can ask a question of the company or repair person as to where, when, and how to have the repair checked. So how will a safety mindset help you get that next great job?

Many carriers say that new drivers have trouble with the inspection process on an interview. As mentioned earlier much of that from my opinion is that many are being taught to memorize the process due to time limitations. If a student really learns the importance of the inspection process and why they are conducting that inspection then they should do better inspections. If they want to make sure the vehicle they are driving is safe they will ask the questions and stop for that secondary inspection from a wheel repair. Knowing to ask these questions can make you a Rock Star to a recruiter.

So get that safety mindset from the beginning of your training and keep it throughout. It will make you understand the importance of the driver in keeping our roads safe and will help you look like a Rock Star on the interview front.

About the Author

Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an artist, author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, 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

Next TTSAO General Meeting will be March 29th 12-2pm

The next TTSAO General Meeting will be March 29th 12-2pm at:

Tim Horton’s Distribution Centre
950 Southgate Dr, Guelph, ON

Please RSVP as seating is limited. Directions will be emailed to you to access the meeting room.

Before the TTSAO General Meeting will be the PMTC/TTSAO workshop. Seating is also limited – please register for each event separately.

PMTC / TTSAO Seminar
9:00-11:00am registrations: Contact Vanessa Cox at info@pmtc.ca, or at 905-827-0587 to register. Space is limited, so register early to ensure you do not miss out.
$25 for TTSAO or PMTC members, $100 for non-members

PMTC-TTSAO Partner on March 29th Seminar

TTSAO General Meeting
12:00-2:00pm registrations: Contact Sara Fitchett at ttsao@ttsao.com , or at 416-623-5461 to register. Space is limited, so register early to ensure you do not miss out.
Light lunch served
No charge
RSVP date: March 25, 2016

PMTC-TTSAO Partner on March 29th Seminar

Are You Being Held Back By Loved Ones?

Could the same people who love you be holding you back in your career? This concept may seem strange, but it is more common than you might think. The thought came to mind the other day when I was listening to a radio show about careers and business. The guest on the show was talking about his relationship with his father and how when starting his business his father tried to discourage him from going forward. Today this person is a very successful entrepreneur. I was listening and thinking that in the trucking industry this is all too common.

It happens to many of us. We are about to embark on a new career or business venture, have investigated it and have our mind made up to definitely move forward. The excitement builds about the new venture and we begin to tell people such as our family and friends. We assume that our friends and family will be excited about any venture that we attempt and tell them for support and confidence. Then it happens, the frown, the roll of the eyes, and then the comments. We are told something like that industry can’t make you money or you can do better than that!

The truth is that they may be trying to protect us from something that they perceive as a flop or venture that won’t be successful. The real truth is that they may not have the proper information or the experience to make proper judgement on YOUR decision. This same thing happened to me at the beginning of my career in trucking. I was told by a friend that he tried trucking and didn’t make any money so he urged me not to get into the business. I am glad I didn’t listen to him as I have been in the industry for over thirty years. In many cases our family and friends want the best for us, but they may just not have all the information. This is why it is very important that you don’t listen to people that don’t know you or the venture you are about to embark on.

How many potential drivers have been turned away by an employment specialist that doesn’t understand the trucking industry? Not everyone is suited to this industry and I don’t want to paint this fake rosy picture of the industry, it is a hard job! There are many benefits to the industry however that may be just the right fit for the person trying to get started. I have been saying for years be careful who you listen to.

I am certainly not suggesting that you don’t ask your family and friends for advice as they are a great support group, however if they don’t have knowledge on your venture or they offer a negative vibe without knowing all the facts then make sure you talk to someone that has the proper information before making a final decision. You will be glad you did!
About the Author

Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an artist, author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, 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

Could a Lack of Education Be An Asset to Your Career?

I know what you’re thinking, how could a lack of education be an asset in anything? I am certainly not suggesting that you don’t get an education, but when starting a new career a lack of education may be the perfect asset. Think about the last time that you attended a course or even gave one if you are an instructor or trainer? You get all different types of students included in the class. I have found many times that the ones who know it all, or at least think they know it all usually stop listening and taking in the information. In the case of the new person as long as they are interested in learning they will often be successful at the end of the course.

In the world of truck driving there are many drivers in the past that did not do well in educational settings or get years of post education but are exceptional drivers. In fact I was one of those drivers and so were many of my friends. I hated school when I was younger and much of that was due to the way the environment was designed for learning. It wasn’t until years later after having found what I was interested in and finding encouraging teachers did I begin to love learning. That encouragement has taken my career and life to new heights. That’s because I had an open mind and was interested in learning whatever topic I was trying to master.

I see similar situations in my training classes. The transportation industry is so complex in routes that a person can take in their career and different from the generic working environment that it puts most students on a level playing field. We have people who are educated and come from other career paths so they listen with an open mind. We have people in class that are not educated, but know they want to drive so they listen with an open mind. The students with a lower education level many times equal the others because of their interest to learn the job.

Of course as an instructor I don’t know the education level of my students unless they tell me, but it is an interesting observation of people. The whole point of this article is two things. One is to never judge people based on their education level because they may surprise you. The second thing is that if you feel you are not highly educated, but interested in learning about a topic or career to give it all you’ve got. You may just be the smartest person in the room.
About the Author

Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an artist, author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, 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

Want to Attract Women? Think Like One?

Yesterday was International Women’s Day and women and men across the world have been celebrating the contributions women make in the world. It’s easy for men to think we can do it all, but the reality is that women make our lives better and add a certain amount of flair. In fact I was so impressed with a class of women that I recently did some presentations to for the trucking industry that I wrote an article about how they might be changing the face of the trucking industry. You can read that article by clicking here if you wish. So if your goal is to attract more women to your team or business how do you do that?

I was listening to one of my regular business shows the other day and the discussion was about hiring women on to your team and how to go about doing that. The discussion focused on the difference between men and women and what attracts them. It was stated that women want more information and will buy from those they trust. On the other hand men will go anywhere that has what they are looking for and purchase it based on the box text. This concept is very true and if you think about comparing how men and women go shopping, it will give you a clear picture of what I am trying to explain. My wife will window shop until she finds the right item, where as I head straight to the item I need and exit the store as fast as possible.

As I listened to the show I got thinking about the transportation industry and the recruiting shortage we face. Many different businesses within the trucking industry are trying to attract women to their teams whether it be a training school or carrier. In the discussion stated above it was mentioned that women prefer to buy from women because they feel more comfortable. I see this in many of the networking groups that I attend where there are many women only events and functions being promoted.

If this is the case then could your advertising be causing you to miss the boat when attracting women? For years an advertisement in the trucking industry meant a picture of a truck and bullet points about pay scale, benefits, and runs available. If you talk to women they probably don’t care about any of those things for the most part. Would it make more sense to have a women in the ad that is on the team, with information on security on the road or home time flexibility?

If you are trying to attract women to your team you may want to ask women already working for you what they think is important to promote for your company. It may just get you the leading edge in attracting the right team members to your team. To all the women in the world Happy Women’s Day, it is nice to see you celebrated as you should be.

About the Author

Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an artist, author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, 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

March 29th Seminar to Offer Insights into Road Check 2015 Results & How to Utilize Driver Mentors in Your Fleet

pmtc logo

The Seminar will be held in Guelph, Ontario, will run from 9am until 11am, and will cover 2 great and diverse topics.

Road check 2015 results and how to prepare for a Roadside Inspection:
Kerri Wirachowsky, the Head of the Enforcement Program Evaluation at the Ministry of Transportation will be on hand to take attendees through the results from Road Check 2015, and will go over the top defects discovered. Officer Wirachowsky will also offer insights into how a fleet and its drivers can be better prepared to ensure a road side inspection goes as smoothly as possible. At the conclusion of the presentation those in attendance will have
an opportunity to pose questions.

Driver Mentors Roundtable:
Stan Campbell from Trucker Radio and Alexis Broadcasting will moderate a panel of prominent fleets and lead a discussion on how best in class fleets utilize driver mentors to enhance their training and on-boarding of new drivers. These fleets will discuss how they select their mentors, what type of training they provide them, and what has and has not worked when it comes to developing and managing their driver mentorship program. If you have a mentor program, or are considering instituting one, this is an opportunity to learn from the experiences of those who have developed their own. The panel will consist of two For-Hire Members of the TTSAO Carrier Group Committee as well as two PMTC Private and Dedicated fleets.
On the For-Hire side we have:
Geoff Topping, Director of Recruiting and Retention, Challenger Motor Freight, Caroline Blais, Recruiting Manager, Kriska Holdings Ltd.
On the Private & Dedicated side we have:
Gerald Carrol, Director, Safety & Compliance, Fortigo Freight Services Inc. Jas Singh, Transportation Manager, TDL Group Corp (Tim Horton’s)

“As promised, the PMTC is continuing to provide and expand its value added educational and networking offerings to its members and partners. This latest seminar, in partnership with the TTSAO, is another great opportunity to come out and learn best practices from award wining fleets” says PMTC President Mike Millian.

“The Truck Training Schools Association of Ontario (TTSAO) appreciates the opportunity to partner with the Private Motor Truck Council of Canada (PMTC) to assist in offering an educational seminar that will benefit private and for hire fleets along with membered schools of the TTSAO.” commented Yvette Lagrois, TTSAO President.

Where: Tim Horton’s Distribution Centre
950 Southgate Dr, Guelph, ON

Time: 9 to 11am
Cost: $25.00 for a PMTC or TTSAO Member, $100.00 for Non Members

How: Contact Vanessa Cox at info@pmtc.ca, or at 905-827-0587 to register. Space is limited, so register early to ensure you do not miss out.

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Could Women Be The New Face of Trucking?

Could women be the new face of trucking? It is a question that may make some laugh and others cheer. The recruiting shortage has caused carriers to look into non-traditional methods and areas for people. Although women have been in the industry for decades in various vocations, lately there has been a real push for women to become drivers. As I work with many training schools here in Canada I see many women training to get into the industry and each year the groups get larger and larger.

I was training a class of future women drivers the other day and was

really impressed with the knowledge and quest for information that they showed during the class. When I conduct training classes for many of the men I find they are much more narrow focused on the

Blonde woman truck driver
s.

outcome and only listen to what they think they need to know. I found the women students were interested in learning as much as they can from whomever came to the class. For instance I still teach map reading in class even though GPS units are popular and available. It’s not that I think we should go back to maps, but it teaches students to look at the trip as a whole and think about what they may encounter along the way. You need that overview to do good trip planning.

The carriers I talk to understand that their industry is changing and if changes (which are coming anyway) in the way that runs are dispatched you may see more women in the industry. Women I find are not concerned with the type of work so much, but the hours. As single mothers and different ethnic backgrounds they want more consistency in home time. Other than that they are prepared to do the work and just want a level playing field of opportunity. If carriers can solve that problem making their operations more consistent in home versus away time you may find the industry more attractive to women becoming drivers. The women I taught in my recent class were willing to learn, listen, and do the work.

The women have already mastered the one trait that makes a good driver and that is attitude. Having a good attitude is the one thing that is very hard to teach someone, but with that trait mastered the rest of the industry specifics can be learned. So if you are looking for drivers and want drivers that are dedicated and willing to learn, then look to the women. You may have drivers willing to be the best they can be.

About the Author

Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an artist, author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, 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 areas visit www.ttsao.com

TTSAO Conference is a big hit!

The TTSAO has just wrapped up their first annual conference and it was a big success. The Stan and Dan Show was funny as can be and positive at the same time. The various panels gave great information and comments turned in showed people will be back again next year. Look for more highlights and information coming soon. Thank you TTSAO Conference Committee for a job well done!

Here is what I got from the TTSAO Annual Conference, what did you get?

People go to conferences for different reasons and I am no different. There are the reasons of networking, gathering information, or looking for that next great idea. All of these are great reasons for attending any conference and you may have your own set of reasons. As an entrepreneur and business owner I have to look at where I am spending my hard earned dollars and make sure every event is worth going to. I do this not only when registering, but after the event to make sure it was worth my money. It’s a similar evaluation to those that have reports to hand in showing the value to superiors and more. Conferences are expensive and need to move a company forward to be worth attending. So this internal evaluation goes on all the time and didn’t stop with the TTSAO conference. The reason I bring this up is that the TTSAO just wrapped up their first annual conference and I am doing my usual evaluation and thought I would share my findings with you.

conference picture
Conference Picture

As mentioned everyone has their own criteria for attending an event and I have my own set. On the networking front I often realize I could see many of the people in meetings for the association. The difference with a conference is that it pulls on people that maybe can’t attend regular meetings due to distance or membership. Networking is always top on my list and the reason I attend most conferences. The TTSAO Conference did not disappoint in that regard.

As for gaining new information I wasn’t expecting to find anything new, but since the topics presented are part of my business consulting I wanted to hear what others had to say on the topics. The information mark hit my measure and I was satisfied that the information was both helpful and pleasantly presented through panel discussions.

So the last piece of the puzzle was the great new idea. I always go into every conference or event hoping to come out with one takeaway that will help my life move forward. The funny thing is that it usually comes at a time when I don’t expect it. Although the takeaway from this conference wasn’t ground breaking it was well received. It came from the main event in an interview and wasn’t really mentioned to be a great idea. It came across with the right amount of passion and I think that is what made it great. One thing I practice in my business is to treat people right. I don’t take the quick road but try to build my business on principle and being someone of value to the industry. That’s it! That was the takeaway. The main interview for the afternoon, which I think was watched by many for the entertainment value and it certainly delivered on that, it was funny. It was also positive, a leader of this industry who has built an empire stressed the fact that playing by the rules and doing the right things is what built his business to the great size it is today. He also talked about having pride in the industry that has kept food on the table for so many of us. Not only did I leave feeling better about our industry, but good that the way I am building my business today can help in the vision of tomorrow.

So thank you TTSAO for a job well done and now to you. What did you get out of the TTSAO’s first annual conference? I hope you saw it the way that I did? If you missed it I hope to see you next year.
About the Author

Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an artist, author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, 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 areas visit www.ttsao.com

It’s education time, get started with the TTSAO conference!

Education seems to be on the forefront for the months of February and March. In fact there is a steady stream of conferences and seminars on the horizon in 2016 and education seems to be the main focus. With the return of Truck World to Toronto this year it seems like we will have no shortage of events to attend in the near future.

All of these events kick off with the TTSAO with their first annual conference set to go on February 23-24, 2016. This conference will focus on retention strategies and training which is a common theme this year. After that there are a host of seminars and truck shows from various associations and industry members. This year there seems to be a large focus on educating teams with a sharp focus on retention and uplifting drivers.

Education has always been important, but there is a real push to show the industry in a better light, as a place of career longevity, and a great place to work. The transportation industry is so large that there are many directions that a person can go in their career. Having these conferences and seminars available to people is a great way to improve both career and industry knowledge. If you are interested in getting the most out of the events coming up it is important to decide on where you need help and what information you need help with. Then target the events that offer that information.

Attending these events are important for a number of reasons. There is the networking component of which is always important in any industry, but the real benefit is the knowledge. I had a Manager from a past carrier tell me that “Knowledge is Power” and he was so right. The knowledge you will gain is important for your future. Often if you go to an event and come out with one piece of information that can change your career or future. If that happens then the event has been a success for you. So I hope to see you out at industry events over the next few months. You will have to look into each associations calendar for information on what is coming up for events.

The best way to start your year of education is with the TTSAO event being held in Mississauga. You can learn and register for the event at www.ttsao.com. We look forward to seeing you there.

About the Author

Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an artist, author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, and speaker. TTSAO also known as the Truck Training Schools Association of Ontario has certified member schools in the truck training industry ensuring quality entry level drivers enter the transportation industry. To learn more about the TTSAO or to find a certified school in your areas visit www.ttsao.com

Striving for Success in Training

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