A Little Upset With The Industry.

Topic 607 | Page 1

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Mike H's Comment
member avatar

Don't get me wrong I love driving and also love doing otr. But I am working with a not so good company because I have issues on my background. I have been safe and productive for over 3 months now. Also just got made a trainer. My problem is I am really trying to get a different job and I was told when I started school that between 3 months to 1 year things start to open up and people forget about your past. Well things are not opening up just yet and I am starting to get really frustrated because I see these companies that are telling me no hire these drivers that have no clue as to what they are doing. They park in the fuel isle for hours while the shower, or shop, or whatever. Can't back to save their lives, don't have a clue what a turn signal is and if they weren't in trucks that were governed would probably drive 85 mph is a 65. Now before those of you start replying about if I wasn't an ex criminal I would be fine and I should have thought about that before I did what I did in the past let me say this. Yes I messed up in the past but I am a safe driver and it really makes me upset that a company will take an unsafe driver over a person with a bad past and an excellent driving record. These company's aren't even saying well get a full year or over a year its just plain no not until its been 10 years since your conviction. Really doesn't make sense to me.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Why do you feel your company is "not so good"? What problems are you encountering with them?

3 months isn't very long. You're still a rookie. You still haven't proven yourself. It sounds like you've gotten off to a great start in showing this company that you can be safe and productive, but you're still very much a newbie. They're still learning what you're made of. I would venture to say that whoever told you doors would start opening and people would forget your past at 3 months didn't know what he or she was talking about. Generally, a rookie should stay at his or her first company for at least a year before expecting more from the company or leaving to look for work elsewhere.

If you have a checkered past, you should probably just be grateful that you have a driving job at all. While everyone else out there has told you no, the company you're with right now said yes and gave you a chance. Don't be angry with them because they haven't measured up to your expectations. If it weren't for them, you'd likely be unemployed right now. No company ever starts a rookie off with all the best loads and the most miles. The "good stuff" goes to the more experienced, proven drivers. You need to give your company more time and keep doing the best you can to prove to them that you're reliable and safe, and I bet as time goes on you'll start to see things slowly but surely improving. Expecting so much right out of the gate is only going to lead you to disappointment though.

Also, I feel I should comment that companies don't hire unsafe drivers. The examples you've mentioned in your post are simply examples of young drivers making rookie mistakes. I'm sure it's annoying to more experienced drivers, but it happens. That doesn't make them unsafe drivers, though. As a trainer, you should know that.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Mike H's Comment
member avatar

Why do you feel your company is "not so good"? What problems are you encountering with them?

3 months isn't very long. You're still a rookie. You still haven't proven yourself. It sounds like you've gotten off to a great start in showing this company that you can be safe and productive, but you're still very much a newbie. They're still learning what you're made of. I would venture to say that whoever told you doors would start opening and people would forget your past at 3 months didn't know what he or she was talking about. Generally, a rookie should stay at his or her first company for at least a year before expecting more from the company or leaving to look for work elsewhere.

If you have a checkered past, you should probably just be grateful that you have a driving job at all. While everyone else out there has told you no, the company you're with right now said yes and gave you a chance. Don't be angry with them because they haven't measured up to your expectations. If it weren't for them, you'd likely be unemployed right now. No company ever starts a rookie off with all the best loads and the most miles. The "good stuff" goes to the more experienced, proven drivers. You need to give your company more time and keep doing the best you can to prove to them that you're reliable and safe, and I bet as time goes on you'll start to see things slowly but surely improving. Expecting so much right out of the gate is only going to lead you to disappointment though.

Also, I feel I should comment that companies don't hire unsafe drivers. The examples you've mentioned in your post are simply examples of young drivers making rookie mistakes. I'm sure it's annoying to more experienced drivers, but it happens. That doesn't make them unsafe drivers, though. As a trainer, you should know that.

Ok let me start by saying this. Companies do hire unsafe and unprofessional drivers as long as there background comes up clean. Weather they keep them around long after they find out how unsafe and unprofessional they are is a different story. Next you may be right they all could be rookie drivers making these unprofessional decisions but then that means 1 of 2 things either there trainer didn't train them properly or they just don't care. I'm not going to get into why I don't like my current company but I will say it has nothing to do with the loads or miles I average 6k miles per week that is far from the issue. And regardless of what you say 3 months @6k miles per week is more then enough time to know how to safely drive and do it in a professional way.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Freightdog (Shaun)'s Comment
member avatar

Sounds like a problem of high expectations and low acceptance. I've found that living life with a high level of acceptance for whatever is thrown my way and low expectations of how things "should" be instead keeps me much more centered, happy, and healthy than when I lived the other way around. It sounds like you've been given a pretty good opportunity to keep distancing yourself from your past, so just keep rolling with the punches, maintain a good attitude (try going an entire day without complaining about anything at all, either out loud or in your head and then try again the next day, and the day after, and so on. Be pleasant and smile with anyone you come across, even if you have to force it. I'll bet that within a week you'll be amazed at how differently you feel.), and keep a safe driving and service record, and before you know it the next right opportunity will come along. Best of luck to you, driver.

Mike H's Comment
member avatar

Sounds like a problem of high expectations and low acceptance. I've found that living life with a high level of acceptance for whatever is thrown my way and low expectations of how things "should" be instead keeps me much more centered, happy, and healthy than when I lived the other way around. It sounds like you've been given a pretty good opportunity to keep distancing yourself from your past, so just keep rolling with the punches, maintain a good attitude (try going an entire day without complaining about anything at all, either out loud or in your head and then try again the next day, and the day after, and so on. Be pleasant and smile with anyone you come across, even if you have to force it. I'll bet that within a week you'll be amazed at how differently you feel.), and keep a safe driving and service record, and before you know it the next right opportunity will come along. Best of luck to you, driver.

Yes freightdog you may be correct. And I like your advise and will give it a try. Thanks

crazy rebel's Comment
member avatar

1.companies can afford to be very picky at this time there are more students now than before 2.trainees take on the trates that the trainer teaches,,so keep that in mind since ur training,ur bad habbits become someone elses 3.some drivers are bad at what they do but its like a 4 wheeler behave till test is over then become a moron on the rd 4.keep ur head up dnt have a high expectation 5.never figure ur the better driver on the rd for ya will always be a rookie noone in there lifetime knows how to drive 5.im in a governed truck and still do 85 mph lmao i liked how ya said that

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Yeah, I totally agree with Freightdog. I've watched people for years struggle to get a shot in the trucking industry with problems on their record. Some people never do get an opportunity and wind up finding work outside of trucking altogether. It seems to me you have every reason to be thrilled that someone is giving you a chance to show you can be a safe, professional driver in spite of past discretions.

And 3 months in the trucking industry proves nothing. That's barely dipping your toes in the water. It's definitely going to take at least a year to get more opportunities with major carriers, and possibly longer. Some carriers have a policy of no felonies or DUI's in a person's lifetime and they won't give you a chance at all. But many will eventually give you an opportunity, but not after three months.

To be out there getting fantastic miles, making extra bucks as a trainer, and having an opportunity to drive a rig for a living in spite of your past is an incredible blessing that I hope you can appreciate and make the most of. I think your expectations are definitely a bit too high.

And I know I'm not the only one that's wondering what you're unhappy with at your current company. If your expectations of getting an opportunity with other companies after only three months were a bit too high then maybe your expectations of your current company are a bit off track also. They took a big risk by giving you an opportunity. They've made you a trainer. They're giving you awesome miles. From the looks of your picture you're driving a real nice Volvo. I'm not sure what else they're supposed to be doing for ya at this point.

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

Mike H's Comment
member avatar

Yeah, I totally agree with Freightdog. I've watched people for years struggle to get a shot in the trucking industry with problems on their record. Some people never do get an opportunity and wind up finding work outside of trucking altogether. It seems to me you have every reason to be thrilled that someone is giving you a chance to show you can be a safe, professional driver in spite of past discretions.

And 3 months in the trucking industry proves nothing. That's barely dipping your toes in the water. It's definitely going to take at least a year to get more opportunities with major carriers, and possibly longer. Some carriers have a policy of no felonies or DUI's in a person's lifetime and they won't give you a chance at all. But many will eventually give you an opportunity, but not after three months.

To be out there getting fantastic miles, making extra bucks as a trainer, and having an opportunity to drive a rig for a living in spite of your past is an incredible blessing that I hope you can appreciate and make the most of. I think your expectations are definitely a bit too high.

And I know I'm not the only one that's wondering what you're unhappy with at your current company. If your expectations of getting an opportunity with other companies after only three months were a bit too high then maybe your expectations of your current company are a bit off track also. They took a big risk by giving you an opportunity. They've made you a trainer. They're giving you awesome miles. From the looks of your picture you're driving a real nice Volvo. I'm not sure what else they're supposed to be doing for ya at this point.

Guess it's the "grass always looks greener on the other side' thing I was going thru. My problem with my current company is dispatch and the way the planner plan the loads. Also the fact that we the drivers do everything from setting the appointments to constantly talking with the brokers. I have 4 friends that work for 4 different companies that say this is not normal for a company driver to do. Dispatch messages me the load and fuel route and that is it I'm on my own. Now on the plus side my 4 friends 2 of which work for the 2 big companies tell me I'm making way more money then them so I guess I should follow everybody's advice and don't worry too much about the dispatch issues I am having. Just do my job the best I can be as safe and professional as I can and be patient and things will fall into place. And Brett it a 2011 International Prostar not a Volvo.

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

Starcar's Comment
member avatar

Boy, I'll tell ya...after getting some crappy directions from BOTH dispatch and brokers, we ALWAYS call and get both directions and an appointment ourselves. That way, if theres a problem, theres only 2 people who coulda messed up. Most company drivers don't have that luxury, so you should consider yourself really lucky....Jsut learn to do it in the mosr economical manner, and stay safe...

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
And Brett it a 2011 International Prostar not a Volvo

Oh, my bad. That sleeper looks just like a Volvo sleeper.

I definitely think you had a case of "grass is greener" syndrome. Every company has its little issues and policies that you'll wish were different. There is no perfect company. And one of the toughest challenges early in your career is knowing where you stand in the trucking industry. Are you with a good company? Are you with a good dispatcher? Are you being treated fairly? You really don't know what to look for or what to expect because you're brand new to all this.

That's why I say you should stick it out with your first company for a year no matter what. That will give you a chance to prove yourself as a great driver, get to know some important people at your company, learn how to handle that rig, adjust to life on the road, and learn more about the trucking industry in general.

I've seen so many new drivers make career-changing decisions long before they knew enough about their company or the industry to make good choices. You simply don't know enough in the beginning to be making major decisions and chances are you're going to make some major mistakes.

Just stick it out where you're at. I think with your background it's 10 times more important that you establish yourself as a strong, steady, hard working, reliable driver. You're not on a level playing field with everyone else. You have even more to prove than most people. So stay where you're at and show em what a fantastic driver you are. You won't get the treatment you'd like from any company until you prove yourself and that takes time. If you try going elsewhere now, not only will you likely wind up in a worse position than you're in now, but you're going to be starting from scratch trying to prove yourself all over again.

I'm really glad you've come here to talk this out. I think leaving your company right now could have been a huge mistake. I'm hoping a lot of others will take the same advice and stay where they're at for a minimum of one year.

Keep us updated on how things go for ya. You've already found out you're making a lot more money than a lot of other drivers and I suspect the more you talk around the more advantages you'll find you have right where you're at.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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