Wheels of Justice
It's the end of the year - now what?
It’s that time of year again; you know, where the end of 2005 meets the beginning of 2006. It’s time to take stock of how you did last year and plan for the New Year. So get out the No. 2 pencil and the Big Chief note pad, and let’s make some notes.
Since I am writing this article, I will assume you decided to pick money as the most important thing to you. I chose money because it will apply to more drivers than the other choices since every driver has different family, religion, health, issues, etc.
Let’s see what society and carriers are looking for in the best paid truck drivers. I guess the most important thing is to pick up the freight on time and deliver it damage free on time. They also want safe drivers, which means a clean MVR, and they want drivers who work well with other people. Every driver comes in contact with shippers and interacts with the dispatchers of their own company. Nobody likes a driver who looks menacing or sloppy, has bad body odor or bad manners. Look at yourself in the mirror and see how you look right now. Are you nice and well-kept, or do you even care? If you don’t care it will show in your appearance and in your actions. By being creative, you can become what the carrier is looking for in a driver, and isn’t that your real goal, to become the driver every carrier will bend over backwards to hire and to keep?
If I have convinced you that attitude is more important than skill in your employment as a driver, then I hope you will believe that your attitude will dictate your future. Once you reach your decision on attitude, then your goal should be to maximize your income. To do so, you will need to set your goals and use your creativity to reach them.
If you decide to be creative and set goals, do it and don’t look back. You choose your attitude, and you choose your skills. Why not work to make your attitude one that will ensure you receive all the benefits you need and deserve? Strive to make 2006 the year people think of you as caring, honest, reliable, safe, qualified, accurate, sincere, genuine, candid, honorable, incorruptible, upstanding and an overall good guy or gal. Start by contacting your boss and ask what you can do to improve how you do your job and how to help the company. You want to become the name they think of when they need anything from a load delivered to asking what the drivers think about anything. Make your name the one they think of first, and the money will follow.
Jim C. Klepper is president of Interstate Trucker Ltd., an organization that provides legal defense protection to commercial drivers. Jim is a lawyer who focuses on transportation law and the trucking industry in particular. He works to answer your legal questions about trucking, and he holds his Commercial Drivers License.