There are many course options for a new person to the industry. In fact there are as many course options as training facilities. So which is the best course for you? Do you take M.E.L.T. (Mandatory Entry Level Training) , do you take the certified 200 hour course? Do you take a bus course or add heavy equipment to the mix?
These are all great questions and can be daunting to someone that doesn’t know which course will help them get a good job. One area I find people have trouble with is thinking far enough ahead and often only look at the potential jobs at the time. The secret is to think about the job you may want ten years down the road.
The thing about the transportation industry is that the career path can be as fluid as traffic on the highway. You may start in one position and within a short time find yourself doing something totally different. The same thing happens as a driver on the road. You train for a job driving van trailers and then find you enjoy flatbed work. You operate a flatbed and find you need to load heavy equipment. You get your truck license then realize you enjoy driving people to the casino with a coach. You never know what you are going to come up against.
How do you combat the problem of seeing the future while working with the training of today? First things first! Keep an open mind about your career future. It is amazing how many opportunities are available in this industry and until a student learns about the industry as a whole they won’t understand what’s ahead. Here are three things to help you keep your options open.
- Talk to various people in the industry about how they started?
- Talk to people and take notes about their careers. Listen to podcasts and videos about the industry and the people that have gone before you. You will be surprised about what you need to know.
- Learn about the different types of work in the industry? Trucking can sound very general but has specific requirements based on the type of work you do. You may not need that training at the beginning of your career but the knowledge will help you get to your goal faster.
Get as much training as possible, whether you think you need it or not. You may not want to work in construction but heavy equipment training can be a great asset to someone that wants to haul heavy equipment around. You may need to load it on the truck.
Keeping an open mind and getting as much training as possible whether needed or not can help you keep your options open for the future and have a successful career. A good place to start is with TTSAO and their Accredited Schools Page. Talk with a certified school to get the right information.
About the Author
Bruce Outridge is a veteran in the transportation industry with over 40 years in the industry in a variety of roles from driver to fleet supervisor and more. Today he is a media specialist in the industry producing a number of programs for the trucking industry such as his trucking podcast The Lead Pedal Podcast for Truck Drivers at www.theleadpedalpodcast.com or his radio station Lead Pedal Radio at www.leadpedalradio.com
Disclaimer: This article is written and based on the opinion of the author and is for general information only