It’s not unusual for the rookie truckers to be pretty intimidated at the beginning of their career, given there’s a lot that can go wrong for them, both on and off the road. It’s only fair to say that this is a serious and quite a responsible job that needs a lot of commitments and preparations, so if you are a newbie in this field, please make sure to research a bit on this topic before you take a seat behind the wheel.
Here is the list of the six most common mistakes you are about to make if you are new to the truck driving business, so please read the lines below and prevent yourself from losing a lot of time, money and nerves.
Not knowing the road
This is the very first thing rookie truckers do wrong – they forget or don’t find it important enough to prepare for the road. Yes, you do have a navigation system at your disposal, but no, that’s not enough. It is highly recommended to go through a route you are about to take and to get familiar with all potential problems and details about it. Find out if there are some road work sections, construction zones, or intense traffic spots in order to avoid being trapped for some time.
Being overly confident
It turns out that licensed company truck drivers have a problem with authority pretty often and that they behave overly confident, which can be a problem. It’s great that you have the knowledge that will allow you to start this new job of yours, but let’s not forget how important experiences are in this line of business. Be smart and listen to your older colleagues, they can share a lot of wise and practical advice with you. Don’t be pushy, and don’t act like you know it all because you don’t.
Not being safe enough
Even though all the newly drivers went through safety practices, it turns out very few of them keep everything they learned in mind when on the road. The main thing when you are on a mission is to keep you, your vehicle and your load safe. And the only way to do that is by following all of the rules and protocols, even those you find to be unnecessary or a bit silly.
Not asking for help
You are new at this, and it’s completely normal to have some doubts or questions. So please, don’t hesitate to ask for help when you need it. Not all rookie truckers will do that, which is the reason they often end up in some sort of trouble and completely unnecessary. It’s not embarrassing to ask for clarification regarding the route, the loading protocol or any other thing related to your task.
Having unreal expectations
The truth is being a truck driver has a lot of benefits, first and foremost the financial ones. But on the other hand, there are some renunciations you will have to make. Truckers are often away from home for days, sometimes even weeks, and it can be a lot to handle if they have families who are waiting for them to return. Also, they are working long hours and often don’t have enough time to rest, eat well or socialize. So it is crucial to be prepared for all of that in order not to fall into crises the very first time you are on your mission.
Having a bad relationship with management
And finally, what often seems to be a problem is a miscommunication between the trucker and the management. If you want to be stress-free when doing your job, you should make sure you have a good relationship with dispatchers because they can make your life a living hell if you are not on the same side. They can be your first line of support when on the road, and they can provide you with clear instructions and help whenever you need it. Or not, it’s up to you.
We won’t lie to you, your job is super responsible and very demanding. But if you take what we talked about into consideration and adopt these suggestions, you will most definitely be able to handle everything that’s coming in the future. Just stay humble, make sure you have all the details always, prepare yourself for the route, and remember to ask for help if you are uncertain about something or in trouble.