Who is pack­ing your parachute?

Team­work is an in­te­gral part of run­ning a suc­cess­ful busi­ness; in road trans­port the driv­ers are vi­tal mem­bers of the team, writes Lynette Gray

Owner Driver - - Owner / Driver -

“START­ING A BUSI­NESS is a lot like jump­ing out of an aero­plane and as­sem­bling the parachute on the way down.” – Un­known

I heard a story the other day that demon­strates there are many peo­ple work­ing in a suc­cess­ful team and we some­times don’t recog­nise the im­por­tance of what each mem­ber con­trib­utes.

Charles Plumb was a US Naval Acad­emy grad­u­ate and jet fighter pi­lot in Viet­nam. He had com­pleted 75 com­bat mis­sions when he was shot down. Plumb ejected from the plane and parachuted into en­emy hands. He spent the next six years in a Viet­namese prison. For­tu­nately, he sur­vived and to­day lec­tures on the many lessons he learned.

One day, he was eat­ing at a restau­rant with his wife when a man came up and said, “You’re Plumb? You flew jet fight­ers in Viet­nam from the air­craft car­rier Kitty Hawk. You were shot down!”

“How in the world did you know that?” Plumb asked.

“I packed your parachute,” the man replied. Charles Plumb in sur­prise and grat­i­tude had to catch his breath.

The man then shook his hand and said, “I guess it worked!” Plumb as­sured him it had, and said, “If your chute hadn’t worked, I wouldn’t be here to­day.”

Plumb thought a lot about that man who had packed his parachute and the hours he spent at a wooden ta­ble at the bot­tom of the ship care­fully pack­ing his and oth­ers chutes. He held in his hands the chute; the fate of some­one he did not even know. ─ An ex­cerpt from The Power of Kind­ness by Mac Anderson.


In our life, many peo­ple have a hand in our para­chutes. Are we tak­ing the time to ac­knowl­edge them, thank them and re­ward them?

My best def­i­ni­tion of a team in the work­place is: “When a group of peo­ple work to­gether co­he­sively, to­wards a com­mon goal, cre­at­ing a pos­i­tive work­ing at­mos­phere, and sup­port­ing each other to com­bine in­di­vid­ual strengths to en­hance team per­for­mance.”

Just re­cently, a seven-year- old boy from Suzhou, Jiangsu in China tried to use an um­brella to catch his fall as he plum­meted 10 storeys from an apart­ment build­ing af­ter see­ing some­thing sim­i­lar on a car­toon. His fall was bro­ken by power lines and as he sprawled hurt on the ground, peo­ple ran to as­sist him. The boy’s in­juries were se­ri­ous, but for­tu­nately not life-threat­en­ing.

Or we can talk about Dar­ren Mor­gan, four-time Aus­tralian Top Fuel Cham­pion.

He has one of Aus­tralia’s most suc­cess­ful motorsport teams on the track.

The DMR crew, who are all vol­un­teers, con­tinue to out­per­form other teams that have more ex­pe­ri­ence, ad­di­tional man­power and big­ger bud­gets. In­stead, DMR re­lies on its fun­da­men­tal val­ues of team­work, com­mit­ment, pas­sion and process, com­bined with a “win at all costs” at­ti­tude that has been in­stru­men­tal in its record-set­ting per­for­mance.

In the words of Dar­ren Mor­gan: “The dif­fer­ence be­tween win­ning and sec­ond place is mi­nus­cule.”

The DMR Top Fuel Drag­ster has an ac­cel­er­a­tion of zero to 100mph in 0.8 sec­onds, zero to 275mph in 3 sec­onds, and zero to 320mph in 4.6 sec­onds. It has horse­power of 7000, up to a max­i­mum 8300rpm and runs on 95 per cent nitro­meth­ane.

Who do you think packs Dar­ren Mor­gan’s parachute? How much trust does he have to have in his team to en­sure the safety of driv­ing a Top Fuel car? Who on your team works on your parachute? Or will you try to use an um­brella?

We would love to hear what you think. You can find us on Face­book at Load So­lu­tions.

Have you got your parachute packed and ready to use for Em­ploy­ment Re­la­tions?


In the past, I have used the com­pany Em­ploy­sure as my parachute. They gave me peace of mind with tai­lored so­lu­tions for Fair Work com­pli­ance and a com­plete set of uniquely tai­lored workspace doc­u­ments.

Have you got your parachute packed and ready to use for Work­place Health and Safety?

Em­ploy­sure can help here as well. With the iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of ar­eas of non­com­pli­ance, they can struc­ture a plan to im­ple­ment best-prac­tice so­lu­tions. They can re­view your work­place pro­cesses and doc­u­ments to iden­tify spe­cific gaps and so­lu­tions in your trans­port busi­ness.

Do you have a health and safety man­ual and hand­book specif­i­cally tai­lored to your busi­ness? Do you have a sys­tem to stay abreast of leg­is­la­tion and in­dus­try up­dates?

What are the other para­chutes in your busi­ness? Do you have a great ac­coun­tant? Who in your team ac­tu­ally does the in­come-pro­duc­ing work? How would you re­ward them or treat them spe­cially? Do you make them feel like they are ap­pre­ci­ated?

Make them feel like the para­chutes they pro­vide are im­por­tant? Be­cause they are.

No driv­ers equals no de­liv­er­ies and no busi­ness.

When many peo­ple work on your team, you some­times don’t recog­nise the im­por­tance of what each does.

If you want to know more, I can of­fer you a 30-minute free dis­cov­ery ses­sion where we can talk about who is pack­ing your parachute in your life and busi­ness. Or we can go deeper into your busi­ness, your fears, your story or your bat­tles.

You can con­tact me via the web­site www.load­so­lu­tions.on­line or on Face­book https://www.face­book.com/load­so­lu­tions.com.au

Feel free to share this ar­ti­cle if you think it can add value to fam­ily, friends and col­leagues.

I hope you learned some­thing new from this short read.

“No driv­ers equals no de­liv­er­ies and no busi­ness.”

Dar­ren Mor­gan’s Top Fuel Car in ac­tion in Jan­uary


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