Top Five Must-Have Qualities In The Trucking Industry
When thinking about all the qualities that make a good truck driver, some of the basic things that come to mind might include being able to back a tractor-trailer, adept at following directions, having a clean driving record, etc. However, the top truck driver skills include much more than just being able to steer an eighteen-wheeler. The best professional truck drivers are well-rounded individuals who possess unique characteristics that set them apart from the competition.
Driving is a big part of a career in trucking, but that’s far from all that comes with the responsibility of driving a truck. Speed, safety, foresight, documentation, and a warm, friendly personality can make all the difference in today’s bustling marketplace. Without a set of intricate and important qualities to back up your driving skills, many amateur drivers find that trucking is more than they bargained for. However, practice makes perfect, and there are several ways to boost your demeanor.
So, whether you’re considering a career in the trucking industry, or are a current driver looking to improve your skills, here’s a list of the top five must-have qualities in the trucking industry.
1. Critical thinking and problem-solving
Being alert and aware at all times when driving is crucial for your safety and the safety of those around you. There are several different factors to be mindful of while on the road: the traffic, the quality of the road, the condition of your truck and trailer, and more.
Critical thinking and problem-solving skills will ensure you’re using all of your senses. Did you feel a weird vibration run through your truck? Do you smell something unusual or alarming? Being alert and identifying when a problem is on the rise is one of the ways to ensure you are making safe choices on the road.
2. Oral and written communications skills
A lot can happen while a truck driver is on the go that prompts them to improvise the day’s original plans. Whether heavy traffic, extreme weather, change in assignment, or consignment issues, a driver needs to keep all parties in the loop about any changes. Not communicating properly with a manager, customer or planner can result in missed loads, loss of miles, and delays in freight. If a professional truck driver keeps all lines of communication open, they will be successful more often than not.
3. Professionalism and strong work ethic
Professional truck drivers can face challenging situations, such as having to wait to offload their freight or dealing with reckless drivers out on the road. Competent truck drivers find ways to stay calm and professional during frustrating situations. Stressful situations could also comprise having to move high-value freight within short deadlines. Staying professional and having a solid work ethic can help a good truck driver keep calm and perform to their best abilities during these challenging circumstances.
4. Teamwork and collaboration
While this might seem a strange quality to have for a solitary job, it is a critical one. Truck drivers spend most of their time solo on the road, but they must also have frequent interactions with clients, employer’s offices, and warehouse crews. Having strong teamwork allows truck drivers to represent their employers well and provide excellent customer service to clients.
Being a good leader is a vital skill truck drivers need to possess. Truck drivers with good leadership skills can face the challenges that show up unplanned when on the road. Great truck drivers with leadership skills are also willing to help fellow truck drivers that they cross paths with. The best truck drivers offer guidance to amateur truck drivers when they need help and work as a team.
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