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

TTSAO Announces Conference Speakers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

TTSAO Announces Conference Speakers

February 9th, 2016 – Hamilton, ON – The Truck Training Schools Association of Ontario (TTSAO) has announced their speaker line-up for their first annual conference, the TTSAO “Striving for Excellence in Training” Conference, scheduled for February 23rd and 24th, 2016 at the Sandman Hotel in Mississauga.

The conference is laid out in a two-day format; day one will be the TTSAO Board of Directors’ Meeting (Directors only), followed by the Association’s General Meeting, which is open to all members and those who are thinking of joining. After the General Meeting, there will be a cocktail party and registrants will be able to visit companies and sponsors who are participating in the trade show.

Day two will feature presentations from some of the industry’s best. These include:

• The Future of Recruitment in the Private Fleet Industry: Private Fleets are just starting to feel the pinch of the driver shortage. Why weren’t these companies affected before? What direction are they now moving in to recruit quality drivers? How does this affect our industry?
o John Harrison, Director of Transportation Operations, Huron Services Group Ltd
o Mike Millian, President, Private Motor Truck Council of Canada
o Dennis Shantz, Director of Fleet Services, Home Hardware Stores Limited
o Andy Walker, Ontario Distribution Manager, Molson Coors
• Recruiting Strategies from Trade Publication Experts:
o Stan Campbell, Host, Trucker Radio
o Manan Gupta, Road Today Publishing
o Ed Novoa, Over the Road
How to Attract and Retain Professional Drivers: Advice from Award-Winning Carriers:
o Caroline Blais, Recruiting Manager, Kriska Transport
o Alex MacKinnon, Chief Operating Officer, Mackinnon Transport
o Garth Pitzel, Director – Safety and Driver Development, Bison Transport
o Geoff Topping, Director – Recruiting and Retention, Challenger Motor Freight

Previously announced, the afternoon session will be The Stan and Dan Show, featuring a candid conversation about trucking with one of the industry’s best. Dan Einwechter, Chairman and CEO of Challenger, is without a doubt one of the most successful and respected trucking professionals in North America. Stan Campbell, the host of Trucker Radio will chat with Dan to find out how he and his team have triumphed over trials and tribulations within our industry.

John G. Smith, publisher and editor of Private Motor Magazine will be the event’s Master of Ceremonies.

Don’t miss out on this great event for only $199.00 plus HST per registrant.

The conference registration  form is now available at TTSAO.com.

TTSAO 2016 Conference info and Registration Form

Seating is limited so register soon.
For more information, please contact:

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

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Will You Be Ready When The Rubber Hits The Road?

Will you be ready? You may be asking ready for what? Will you be ready for a career in trucking of course? The truth is that most people interested in getting onto the trucking industry as professional drivers feel that as long as they go into some type of training program that they will learn everything that they need to know to be a professional driver. It is true that with a good school you will learn the practical skills and theory on how to be good at your position. There is some preparation for the position that can be explained in training, but you should really have prepared for before even entering the training program. The preparation required is your mindset and only you can handle that activity.

The TTSAO (Truck Training Schools Association of Ontario) has developed a Carrier Group which is a group of carriers that are partnering with the TTSAO to help improve their training curriculum to better train new drivers for a career in transportation. In a recent meeting by the group it was outlined that one of the potential problems with new people coming into the industry is that many are ill prepared for the lifestyle that is required for someone on the road for long periods of time. Potential drivers are being encouraged to go into transportation, but are not prepared for life on the road. Now being a trainer myself I know that this is brought up countless times throughout the programs in various ways. In many ways this is too late. A person has already committed to the course and may be hoping to find that perfect position at the end. It doesn’t usually work that way.

The real trick of course is in preparing yourself for your new career. How do you do that? To be honest there is no easy way to prepare, but it is possible. Do your homework before registering for a course and talk to people in the industry. Many new drivers I talk to said they enjoy driving long distances and enjoy the solitude of being alone. You need to evaluate the many parts of the job possibly even individually so that you can determine if you are a proper fit for the job. Being alone is just one aspect of the job. Do you enjoy meeting different people? Do you possess street smarts to help keep you safe on the road? Are you organized and good at planning? Are you willing to be gone days at a time? These are just a few of the questions and items that you should be prepared for long before entering a training program.

Preparing your mind before you enter a training facility will set you far ahead of the class so that you can understand the information being delivered and allow you to understand why certain topics are being covered more than others. A career in transportation can be wonderful and many of us that have put in the road miles in will tell you that it gets into your blood. Preparation is the best way to start that career in a positive way.
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.

TTSAO Talks Recruiting and Retention at Annual Conference in February

Recruiting or retention, which is more important? Depending on which side of the coin your job lies you may feel either recruiting or retention could be more important or both. The truth is that I know many companies that just a few years ago thought that recruiting was more important to keep the seats filled. Then the driver shortage came about and people were doing everything they can to hang on to the people they have on staff now. Some of that meant lowering the bar or excusing mistakes made. Over the last couple of years there has been a switch and focus on retention. The smarter players in the transportation industry have figured out that their drivers are important to the operation and livelihood of the company.

I have always said in my own articles and blog posts that every company should focus on the team members they have. Just like a business should focus on the clients they have as it is harder to get new clients than to keep ones already dealing with you, retention works the same way. Things are changing again in the transportation industry and there is now a strong focus on retention. There are just very few people coming into the system that if you don’t focus on retention there will be no people in the seats. I believe there will be a large changes for training centres as well in the future and TTSAO is already on the forefront.  Recruiting will always be important to the transportation industry, but if you don’t focus on retention the system will operate like a hamster on a wheel. If either area is of importance to you then the TTSAO conference is the place to be.

The TTSAO is helping on recruiting and retention issues through their first annual conference being held in Mississauga Ontario on February 23-24, 2016 at the Sandman Signature Convention Centre. The feature presentation will be with Challenger Chairman and CEO Dan Einwechter talking about how the company has become successful over the years. In addition to the main feature there will be breakout sessions with other transportation professionals and members of the private fleet industry. You can view the full schedule and register through the TTSAO website. The seats are filling up fast for the event and seating is limited. You will see that 2016-2017 will be focused on retention whether on a grand scale like a conference or smaller scale such as a team meetings. As many companies adjust to the changing landscape in transportation retention strategies will be at the forefront. Get ahead of the pack and join the TTSAO at their first annual conference. You won’t regret it!

TTSAO 2016 Conference info and Registration Form


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 area visit www.ttsao.com

Striving for Success in Training

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