The Benefits Of Staying With Your Starter Company Beyond One Year - Article By G-Town

Topic 22822 | Page 4

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Kim T.'s Comment
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We really need a like button...one that we can hit several times.

Very well said, Old School!!

Robert W.'s Comment
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I loved the end of your story. Golden!

Excellent article G-Town, really great stuff!

I just now finished my busy day and had a chance to read it. Many of you know that I started my career at Western Express. Despite all the online horror stories about them, I did remarkably well there. I learned so much by working at a company that was bringing in approximately 150 new drivers every week, because they were also losing that many each week.

I learned that good solid drivers always manage to come out on top - it makes no difference who's name is on the truck's doors. I also learned that trucking companies quickly recognize those drivers who exhibit a consistent ability to keep things moving efficiently. Those drivers are consistently favored and put in the best positions for maximizing their pay.

The outrageous falsehoods that people believe about trucking companies begin to be verified in their minds the very moment they hit a little snag in their job. Now who doesn't hit a few snags when trying to start their trucking career? But when we start it with the ill conceived ideas that we allowed to be planted in our mind by fools we've never even met, we do ourselves a real disservice. Most trucking careers are doomed because of foolish online lies that have morphed into legendary "facts" concerning this whole career. It's hard enough overcoming the mountain of difficulties inherent with this career, but on top of that, today's rookies are up against a virtual flood of misinformation that hamstrings most of them right from the start.

I have invested a lot of my personal time over the years trying to raise a standard against the flood of Bovine Excrement that has literally destroyed many budding truck driving careers. I think it's sad that a career that I have found to be extremely rewarding is so maligned by the riff raff who never had what it takes to succeed at this stuff in the first place. I know what we do here has helped so many people, but it is just alarming at how many are still being blown off course by all the bad information that they find when researching this career.

Just yesterday I was sitting in a terminal rat's nest at our terminal in Atlanta, GA. Two driver's were discussing how they started their careers at Western Express, but they both quit within 90 days because of how bad the company was. They couldn't get any miles, their pay was never right, their driver manager wouldn't answer their phone calls, blah, blah, blah, until I wanted to vomit. One of them told me he was waiting on his driver manager to route him to the Gulfport, Mississippi terminal because he was "quitting the company." (Knight) When I asked him why he was quitting, his response was clear and bold, "I told myself that I would give these guys three months to show me what kind of operation they had going here, but so far it's been the same old bull s**t type of treatment I got at Western Express. I'm moving on to someplace that will show me some respect. There's a big demand for drivers right now, and I'm going to find me someplace with a nice fat sign-on bonus."

Haha! He had stepped right into it at that point. I calmly told him, " I've worked for two trucking companies who treated me with great respect and big fat paychecks." "Which ones were that," he asked. I paused, looked him in the eyes, and said, "Western Express, and Knight Transportation." They looked at each other and pretty much fell silent. One of them decided he needed to go outside to smoke a cigarette, and the other one said he would come out and join him.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Driver Manager:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
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G-Town

Great Article! You hit the nail on the head! Job hopping is such a pain in the ***, from health benefits to 401 k's, etc. Not mention the fact that you start at the bottom again. But great food for thought to any newbies and returning drivers. So much has changed in this industry, but the not the work ethic.

thanks again G-town, and Brett for bringing this article back to the forefront.

G-Town's Comment
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Raptor making a good point...

Consider Swift only be able to couple to only Swift Trailers. "Sorry G-Town I don't have a Swift Trailer for you to haul today," says G-Towns Dispatcher. Are you getting my drift?

That would be a Hoot,...I can count the number of Swift trailers I’ve been under on one hand since I started running Walmart Dedicated.

Good point regardless.

Dispatcher:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Raptor making a good point...

double-quotes-start.png

Consider Swift only be able to couple to only Swift Trailers. "Sorry G-Town I don't have a Swift Trailer for you to haul today," says G-Towns Dispatcher. Are you getting my drift?

double-quotes-end.png

That would be a Hoot,...I can count the number of Swift trailers I’ve been under on one hand since I started running Walmart Dedicated.

Good point regardless.

Oops,...wrong thread. Meant for the now Famous Matching Trailer and Tractor thread. LOL

Dispatcher:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

G-Town

Great Article! You hit the nail on the head! Job hopping is such a pain in the ***, from health benefits to 401 k's, etc. Not mention the fact that you start at the bottom again. But great food for thought to any newbies and returning drivers. So much has changed in this industry, but the not the work ethic.

thanks again G-town, and Brett for bringing this article back to the forefront.

Thank you Robert.

RealDiehl's Comment
member avatar

Hey, G (or anyone with an opinion),

What are your thoughts on bouncing around to different positions within the same company. For example, moving from an OTR position to a dedicated position, then going back to OTR or regional? Any drawbacks to doing this? Or...could it be seen as something positive in that you're gaining experience doing different types of driving?

Great article by the way. I enjoyed reading it and all the replies.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

RealDiehl wonders:

Hey, G (or anyone with an opinion),

What are your thoughts on bouncing around to different positions within the same company. For example, moving from an OTR position to a dedicated position, then going back to OTR or regional? Any drawbacks to doing this? Or...could it be seen as something positive in that you're gaining experience doing different types of driving?

Great article by the way. I enjoyed reading it and all the replies.

I did just that with Swift. My first 5 months were classic OTR. I was asked to move to shuttle (their term for line-haul), and I did. After about 4 months pulling trailers back and forth between Memphis and St. Louis (4 1/2 hrs one way), I moved to a GP dedicated run. About two years ago, moved back to shuttle. (Easier to take time off when the 2018 eclipse happened, among other things.) No one worried about "job hopping" then. Just remember to clear the move with the DM you are leaving.

Dedicated Run:

A driver or carrier who transports cargo between regular, prescribed routes. Normally it means a driver will be dedicated to working for one particular customer like Walmart or Home Depot and they will only haul freight for that customer. You'll often hear drivers say something like, "I'm on the Walmart dedicated account."

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

I bounce back and forth from Midwest Regional to Network Fleet (our OTR) with no problems. All I have to do is let dispatch and payroll know since NF pays a teensy bit more lol.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Oswald M.'s Comment
member avatar

Great article! G-Town made some good points that I hadn't really thought about. Wish there was a "reputation" system so I could give this gentleman a thumbs up.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

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