I Love My Company, But I Think It's Time...

Topic 32811 | Page 3

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Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

I have talked things over with my wife. We have both decided that if I do choose to hire on with another company, it will be because I am looking to do something completely different, like a home daily job. Or, if I go to another company basically doing the same thing, then it has to be a situation where there is no question that the pay would be better. Because of the way my current company pays east coast loads and how often I run them, it will really be hard to find an OTR or regional job that pays substantially better.

I have a few years that I must wait until I am able to get my Hazmat. I really am not all that crazy about hauling food grade tankers. I have no interest in getting into flatbed for any specialized freight in that arena. So, that leaves reefer and dry van opportunities. I am not going to get a noticeable bump in pay by switching companies to haul the same thing that I am currently hauling. So, just as you said Brett, a move for me would probably be just a lateral move, not an upward move.

Thank you, everyone, for the valuable insights. It really was extremely helpful to me. I came pretty close to making a move that likely would have been a disappointment when the reality of trucking set in. That reality being that every company hauling similar freight is dealing with the same issues. My best approach to the whole situation is to improve my situation by improving myself. I can tighten up in some areas, talk to me DM when I am feeling like things are repeatedly not going as it seems they should, and be creative in making my truck the first that a shipper or receiver wants to load or unload.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

PJ's Comment
member avatar

Ryan we have all been where you are. It’s pretty normal. A wise chief in the Navy told me aling time ago “Never say never” and “Always keep your options and eyes open”.

Always strive to learn and improve yourself. I learn something new everyday.

Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

Ryan we have all been where you are. It’s pretty normal. A wise chief in the Navy told me aling time ago “Never say never” and “Always keep your options and eyes open”.

Always strive to learn and improve yourself. I learn something new everyday.

It's hard, sometimes, to keep the perspective that even though many members here have been doing trucking for a lengthy time, all of you long-timers have seen the things that we greenhorns are seeing afresh.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
One was because of an accident that shutdown the highway while I was on it.

Do you have a CB radio? I lost count of how many times a wreck closed the highway, but I quickly went around it because I knew about it ahead of time.

Even without a CB, Google Maps gives real-time traffic information. I'm not sure if it only covers cities or the entire nation, but it will show a highway in red if traffic is stopped or at a crawl.

So those are two ways you may have learned about the accident and gone around it. That's why I asked, "Are you sure you did everything possible to get to your appointments on time?" Experienced drivers learn a ton of tricks over time and rarely arrive late. There may have been nothing you could do in this case, even with a CB and Google Maps. But whenever you're late, take a hard look at everything you did in the hours and days leading up to the delay. You will almost always find something you could have done.

Another late delivery was because dispatch and customer service got the delivery times of two loads going to the same place mixed up. I followed the information in the load plan just as we are instructed to do

I almost always contacted the customers before arriving, especially if I knew I might load or unload early. I would call and verify the appointment and the directions because one or both are sometimes wrong, or something may have changed. If you had called ahead, you might have discovered the discrepancy.

To be clear, I'm not at all criticizing you. I'm just giving examples of how a little digging will find opportunities to learn.

I am providing that information to say that I truly am a highly dependable driver whom my company knows will get the job done.

That's the key to everything right there. If you know you outperform most drivers, you have all the leverage in the world to pressure dispatch a little when your mileage drops or ask them for an extra favor once in a while. Dispatchers are acutely aware of who their top performers are, and they will take care of them. Of course, never forget that being kind, helpful, and cooperative is also big in trucking because so many drivers are not, especially when they're unhappy about something.

You'll make great money and get the treatment you deserve if you handle yourself like a pro. It's obvious you care deeply about performing at a high level. Never stop searching for ways to improve.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

One was because of an accident that shutdown the highway while I was on it.

double-quotes-end.png

Do you have a CB radio? I lost count of how many times a wreck closed the highway, but I quickly went around it because I knew about it ahead of time.

Even without a CB, Google Maps gives real-time traffic information. I'm not sure if it only covers cities or the entire nation, but it will show a highway in red if traffic is stopped or at a crawl.

So those are two ways you may have learned about the accident and gone around it. That's why I asked, "Are you sure you did everything possible to get to your appointments on time?" Experienced drivers learn a ton of tricks over time and rarely arrive late. There may have been nothing you could do in this case, even with a CB and Google Maps. But whenever you're late, take a hard look at everything you did in the hours and days leading up to the delay. You will almost always find something you could have done.

double-quotes-start.png

Another late delivery was because dispatch and customer service got the delivery times of two loads going to the same place mixed up. I followed the information in the load plan just as we are instructed to do

double-quotes-end.png

I almost always contacted the customers before arriving, especially if I knew I might load or unload early. I would call and verify the appointment and the directions because one or both are sometimes wrong, or something may have changed. If you had called ahead, you might have discovered the discrepancy.

To be clear, I'm not at all criticizing you. I'm just giving examples of how a little digging will find opportunities to learn.

double-quotes-start.png

I am providing that information to say that I truly am a highly dependable driver whom my company knows will get the job done.

double-quotes-end.png

That's the key to everything right there. If you know you outperform most drivers, you have all the leverage in the world to pressure dispatch a little when your mileage drops or ask them for an extra favor once in a while. Dispatchers are acutely aware of who their top performers are, and they will take care of them. Of course, never forget that being kind, helpful, and cooperative is also big in trucking because so many drivers are not, especially when they're unhappy about something.

You'll make great money and get the treatment you deserve if you handle yourself like a pro. It's obvious you care deeply about performing at a high level. Never stop searching for ways to improve.

Thanks for this feedback. You are a true Ace.

Oh, I didn't have a CB back then, but I do now. It has helped me avoid an accident that shutdown I-80 near PA/OH border. It helped me know to find a place to park because of high wind gusts along I-90 in IN. It also helped me find a place to park at 22:00 near Cleveland when finding that spot can be really tricky in some places.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Check out Google Maps and their live traffic feature if you haven't already. Super helpful.

Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

Check out Google Maps and their live traffic feature if you haven't already. Super helpful.

I do use it frequently. It's right in the frequently used app section of my home screen. 👍

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