Do you feel as exhausted as I do? It has been a crazy year, there have been the wackiest elections in history, the economy is up and down, and the weather is getting crazier every day. Social media has our everyday lives turning into a movie for all to consume and hatred seems to be running rampant in our communities. If you feel a world of uncertainty as the rest of us do then you are not alone, but what can you do about it?
We are told everyday that we can’t control other people or things that are out of our control and there is nothing more truthful than that. So how do you gain control in a world where there seems to be none. One of the best ways that I have found is taking stock in your own achievements. The reason this is a good step is because the only person you can control is yourself. For me, knowing I am growing in the direction I am wanting to go helps me feel on control. You’ve possibly heard that saying from the past, “If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail!” I have many friends that are artists and I to am an artist, but when I look at the successful ones they all have a plan as to where they want to go. Taking stock of the past is the first step to knowing where you want to go.
If you are entering into the transportation industry then you may be thinking all I want is a job. In many of my training courses I see the lack of a plan in many students. They are hoping to get through a course and then hope to be at the top of their game. As many find out, a new student at that stage is just beginning their career and has a long way to go, no matter how well they can drive a truck. That is because there are so many other areas to that job that make the difference between a professional driver making money and a licensed driver that can’t get a job. How you approach the industry and connect with key people are what makes the difference.
Where are you on your journey? Have you investigated in the training required to get you started? Have you created a plan on how you are going to make money in this industry once you get to that point of being hired? Do you even know what you want to do? Did you increase your network allowing you to reach the right carriers and companies to improve your life as a whole?
If you are saying there were no opportunities then you’re wrong. Any of you that are local to Ontario had the chance to attend free seminars offering information, networking, and ways to improve your brand and get your career started on the right track. The presentations included how to improve yourself as a driver at a carrier allowing you to increase your financial picture through better lanes and operations. For the owner operator the seminars included information on improving your tax situation and operating profitably. For the supervisors there was information on working with data that can help improve the safety of your fleet and improve your team. Building your network with industry experts and our sponsors such as Fleet-Tax Services, Challenger Motor Freight, Ontario Truck Driving School, RS2000 Tax Consultants, and Spectra Products are all vital to getting information that can help your career.
If you aren’t able to get to an actual seminar then podcasts, webinars, and video platforms all offer information to help you improve your career. It is up to you to go and get it. Wondering where to start try The Lead Pedal Podcast for truck drivers, the Women in Trucking webinars, the Owning Your Success Newsletter, and industry publications such as Road Today Magazine and more. You can learn more about these items at bruceoutridge.com
The important thing is to take advantage of programs available in the industry, grow your network, and have a plan for the future. Having that plan will help you know which opportunities you should take advantage of for the future.
About the Author
Bruce Outridge is transportation consultant with over 30 years experience in the industry. He is the host of The Lead Pedal Podcast for drivers ( www.theleadpedalpodcast.com), author of the books Running By The Mile, and Driven to Drive, and is a trainer and consultant for the industry. You can learn more about Bruce and his work at www.bruceoutridge.com