HOW DID YOUR YEAR TURN OUT?

Road Today - - Guest Column -

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 of 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 want 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 too 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 li­cenced driver that can’t get a job. How you ap­proach the in­dus­try and con­nect with key peo­ple is 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 Smart Trucker 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 www.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.

Bruce Outridge Bruce

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