Every trade requires certain qualities and strengths of character, and we will all agree to that. When it comes to trucking, though, everybody thinks they can do it. What can be so hard – it is just driving, right? However, according to researchers, truck drivers should possess certain traits to perform well on the job. I believe, though, that with adequate training and practice most people can manage to drive a semi-truck.
Top truck drivers traits:
Reliability and Responsibility
In the transportation industry, deadlines are very important, and truck drivers should be able to plan effectively and stick to deadlines. Individual customers and businesses have schedules and meetings that may depend on the trucker’s timely performance. Reliable truckers are the solution to a shipping problem. But are the truckers really the problem? Today the trucking industry is facing challenges, and one of them is the shortage of truck drivers. What is the real issue here?
Alertness and Fitness
Driving requires multitasking, which, in turn, demands alertness. To be alert one needs to be in good physical condition. This straightforward logic tells us that one is not happening (or at least at its best) without the other. That’s why these two characteristics go together. Alertness and good physical health will help truck drivers recognize and react to challenges on the road. Drivers should be able to easily evaluate a situation and react on time.
Patience and Flexibility
This trait will help a trucker manage stressful situations efficiently. A long-distance truck driver should not take it out on his family or a dispatcher every time a load is late or the truck breaks down. Road conditions also affect this industry often meaning the driver has to be ready to adjust plans, timelines, and routes. The truck driver has to have people skills because, in fact, drivers deal with many people all the time during their work hours. So, be polite and cool if you want to be a good driver.
Independence and Boldness
It’s not a coincidence that most truck drivers are independent contractors. Or is it? Truck drivers must be self-dependent, able to handle their responsibilities, and rely on their decisions. Most truckers don’t have a manager or support team to help them resolve a problem. They are alone most of the work day and have to rely only on themselves. This requires, just like in many other professions, keeping up to date with the industry standards and best practices. Drivers must be able to solve problems with loading and traffic for example, whenever they occur.
Another important trait, or rather a skill, is being mechanically trained. Truck drivers should have a basic understanding of the truck’s engine and mechanics, so they can fix minor problems like changing a light bulb, for example. The more a truck driver knows about the truck mechanics the better. It is an advantage that will allow them to assess a mechanical breakdown and help avoid possible overcharge at the auto repair shop.
After some research I discovered that these are the major traits one should have in order to be a good truck driver. I still think that after a good training course and some practice most of us can manage to be a truck driver, but there are always exceptions.
These traits are common for many other professions. Being a trucker, though, is more difficult because besides all these necessary traits one should be able to handle and maneuver a big rig. It is not easy. Let’s congratulate all those hard working truck drivers on the road and thank them for what they do. At Corsia Logistics we thank them every day! America runs on trucks after all.
What do you think are the most important traits for truck drivers? Do you have what it takes to be one?