Freedom liberates us, at the same time freedom binds us with responsibility. The way of freedom may not be facile always. We have to understand the fact that nothing comes easy so is the Freedom of Trucking. Freedom demands certain accountabilities. Make sure you are prepared for this freedom before getting into the trucking industry. You should understand the meaning of freedom with trucking and how it works, in what sense it is flexible. The job of a trucker is way more different than conventional jobs. In structured jobs, working hours are well scheduled. Most of us are habituated and known to structured jobs. You don’t have much flexibility but you know what to do and when to do it. We are aware of the amount and hours of jobs.
The freedom related to trucker’s jobs often requires a commitment to the idea of adjustment. You can test this “liberty adjustment” to notice how this flexibility works for you. You need to work hard to get adjusted to flexible hours of work to sense its freedom.
I was in a conventional job for a few years of my life. I was comfortable and confident in that life. But I certainly wanted to leave that comfort zone and try something out of the box. Leaving that comfy couch and complacency of life, it was more likely to be challenging to me. During my training, I needed to know how to realize possible troubles and understanding of it. The trainer let me drive his vehicle during the training period. I released myself into right trucking and liberated to roll on freeways and the vast byways.
I enjoyed the new journey of my life as a trucker and was thoroughly intrigued by its liberty and freedom. Most of the companies offer drivers a begin date and time, a delivery date. We have to maintain that accountability. In conventional jobs, you may have your co-workers and associate poking their nose into your job and may provide you unwanted suggestions. In the trucking industry, these things are not normal. You will have Freedom in true sense, freedom of doing your job independently. This concept of freedom may be challenging for new drivers. Don’t overvalue or understate the freedom. It may swing either way.
Time Management, The Key Tool
Time management can initially be daunting for those who switch from a completely different industry. They need a lot of practice to improve their skill, so did I. Before starting your hours you need to calculate how many miles you can cover within a limited time. It took a toll on me in my initial days. I realized with no delays that “Trucker Freedom” has a price. The more you will be aware of the fact, the easier it will be for you to articulate your plans of time management. A reality check is necessary. That let us grow from the core.
I plan my route, estimate the duration time. Several highways, freeways, or toll-free roads take less time and ease my journey. These are small steps to manage and save time. I also consider taking break stops and including break time is also a part of my plan. Few Trucking apps are there (such as- tpMobile, uShip,CamScanner) that help truckers to track activity, possible risk, speed, truck’s fuel consumption. If you know about these beforehand you can plan accordingly and adequately monetize your time. A notebook or notepad on your phone can be a very helpful tool on the road. I use my notepad to write all my to and fro info down, but I also have a notebook where I jot down my speed, hours, and miles. At the end of the day, it helps self-evaluation.
That way our attitude will develop towards responsibility and it will enhance the idea of freedom. The primary agenda is to work hard on trip planning and work ethic to enjoy “Trucker Freedom”.
Try Not To Depend On Your GPS
I relied on GPS for different destinations, once I aligned the GPS using the look-ahead feature with the written instructions on the Costco trip-sheet for each store. It took me the opposite lane of the store and told me to make a U-Turn and tried to route me 5 miles out of the way. I was familiar with the area and suddenly realized that GPS was routing extra miles unnecessary. I am not saying all the time GPS is wrong. It will be correct 98% time but that 2% time it can re-route you or detour you extra miles; that may affect your reputation of time management to your Customers.
I started compiling route notes from one destination to another; it gave clarity about different directions, areas, and routes. That idea is a huge time saver. All reminders, notepads, and tracking of places, routes, and durations are blessing indeed. This facilitates “liberty adjustment”.
Sketch Plan Before Each Delivery
Plan before each delivery. Calculate travel hours; include break time, fueling time. Take an idea of the route before starting, you can check which route can have less traffic and speed up your travel. This way truckers can make their life easy, they can be confident and build their reputation to clients.
I adapt this as a part of my daily plan. Have a basic understanding of the way of your work. You should know where you are going and what to expect along the route and at the customer’s dock. If dock ingress requires a specific approach and you guess wrong? The result can be devastating for your goal and career reputation.
Strong Relationship Is A Core Part
Develop Relationships with Driver Leaders, associates, and Planners. As you developed a better understanding of the entire operation, after a certain period you can request them about your delivery date a day advance. If you are in good relation with a planner, they can reveal about the delivery schedule to you beforehand, utilizing this opportunity you can politely ask them to switch your destination or delivery. This is called a preplanned and detail-oriented work.
This is the basic step; I applied for the skill development, that’s the natural outcome of the entire process. The great bonding between the members of the association is necessary to manage the Freedom of Trucking. Accountability and responsibility are two major elements required for Trucking Freedom. These are work ethics no matter what job you have.
Good Communication, The Foundation To The Progress Of Any Industry
One should act in a proactive way to maintain good communication. While truckers are on road they can communicate driver leader (dispatch), and give an update of any possible troubles or delays by using an electronic device like Qualcomm. If drivers communicate with the dispatch and give an update, they can avoid possible troubles and provide precautions.
Understand the entire system step by step and analyze it. Jot down what to do and when to do, practice it. Be your monitor, monetize your skill. It’s like a muscle, once you know the ‘liberty of adjustment’ and its practice; it will make you grow personally and professionally.
Be flexible; be in charge of your life, and sense ‘Trucking Freedom’ to grow.