Bob had been coming to the end of his four week training period with Randy his trainer, he had been doing pretty well and felt confident he could handle the duties of a long haul truck driver. He had done well in the classroom, he had done well on the road, and this last week had been just for him to refine a few items and build confidence. At the last stop Bob had noticed something that Randy hadn’t talked about too much, relating with the customer. Randy was a good trainer and had of course shown Bob how to deliver loads, check paperwork, and secure his loads. He had also shown Bob how to call ahead if late and so on, but he hadn’t shown Bob the sales part of succeeding in trucking, he didn’t because that is not something new people need to deal with until later in the their career. Bob had noticed Randy talking with shippers and exchanging business cards but didn’t really think anything of it until it had happened a number of times. On this latest run Bob had noticed a Randy doing it again and when they returned to the truck he thought this time he would ask why he was doing it.
Bob pulled out onto the highway and when both were comfortable he decided now was a good time to ask the question to Randy about his conversations with shippers and receivers they delivered to. Bob started not sure how to approach the situation because he didn’t know what was involved. “Randy, I notice that many times after we load or unload you talk with the shipper and then hand them a business card, I was wondering what that was all about?” Randy sat quietly before answering, and then piped up. “Well Bob, if you think about the size of our small company we are the only people from our company that the customer sees, so in a way we are the sales representatives for the company. I enjoy working here and am treated very well, so if the experience at a customer has been positive I will often ask if everything is okay and then hand them a company business card should they be looking for a transport company for future business. Often times this has resulted in a new steady customer for the company. In order to do that we have to offer good customer service, deliver on time,and be professional in our jobs.” Bob thought about that and then asked Randy, “Do you get compensated for doing that?” Randy laughed,”The compensation is keeping your job with lots of work, getting promoted to better runs, and having a good place to work. Trucking is a team sport and it is everybody’s job to keep the company moving forward. If you aren’t doing a good job and sales are finding new accounts and then losing them the company won’t be around for long. If every person does their job to the best of their abilities then the company will be successful. If you can do a little extra that makes it even better for the future.” Bob took the advice and realized there is a lot more to trucking than just driving up and down the road. Bob was thankful that he had a professional trainer in Randy and that he was learning more than just how to drive a truck, but have a career.
About the Author
Bruce Outridge is a transportation consultant with over 30 years of experience and with or of the books Driven to Drive and Running by the Mile. To learn more about. Bruce or order his books please visit his website at www.outridgeenterprises.ca