Hopefully Tomorrow...

Topic 8486 | Page 1

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J. Snow's Comment
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I'll get assigned another Mentor. My first one decided quickly that I wasn't going to work out for him and that left me high and dry on Saturday. Which is fine. Rather get that figured out before I got on the truck. Some statements he made:

"I'll tell you how to do something once. If I have to tell you a 2nd time, we will have a problem." "If you don't know how many points there are on a pre-trip, we are going to have a problem" "I'm a Diamond driver and I'm not going to loose that because of you"

And a few other choice statements. Once he realized that none of that was sitting well with me he made up a story to give to dispatch and left. I spoke to them and then said go home and we will call you on Monday. So they called and I'm waiting for them to call back.

Welcome to Trucking! LOL :)


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.

Steve L.'s Comment
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That is some diamond-encrusted BS. Sorry to hear it. I'm surprised 'cause most companies (I thought) only used fairly level-headed people for that part of the training/orientation.

At least he relieved you of having to put up with him. Let's face it, if you DID do anything to tarnish his sterling record, you'd feel forever guilty about it. My guess is; someone talked him into being a mentor and he's fighting it tooth and nail.

Good luck.

J. Snow's Comment
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And Nothing today. Not even a call saying-we are working on getting you a Mentor. If I get nothing tomorrow I'm jumping ship.

Errol V.'s Comment
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That guy is not a mentor. I think he wanted the "slave labor" that he gets benefits but it doesn't cost him anything. Mentor = Teacher. As a teacher, believe me, sometimes giving re-teaches are not enough, but that's what you need to do.

Swift orientation is finished Wednesdays, that's when the mentors come around. Double check, you might have to hold out till Wednesday.

J. Snow's Comment
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In Ocala it ends on Thursday... I went out and drove for Uber today to try to make some $$ and I'll call my DDM (driver development mgr) tomorrow. At least tell me I'll be in a truck on Thursday. I need something to go on.


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.
Chris L.'s Comment
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You probably dodged a bullet, I wouldn't want to be on that dudes truck. Hopefully you get a good mentor,good luck.

J. Snow's Comment
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I really.. just want to... well.. complain a little..

So the guy that called me on Monday to match me up to a Mentor and said he would call back either Monday or Tuesday. Did not. So I called this morning at 8:30. Got someone else who said they would send him a message (and his supervisor) to let them know to call me. Nothing. I called again at 12:50, got him on the phone. He acted like he didn't know who I was. Said to give him an hour and he would call back. He did not. I called at 4:15 today. He said 'oh yea, I sent an email, let me check on that... hold on a sec'... I waited about 15 secs hearing him punching keys, and got disconnected. I called back a few minutes later and got 'please wait, we will be right with you. I hung up. I called back after I got home and got the 'please wait, we will be right with you'... I waited. After 15 minutes someone else answered. I told him What was up, gave him my name and number, and he said 'I'll tell him to call you'. Of course nothing now...

My friend who was having issues getting a Mentor assigned got one today and is meeting her tomorrow morning.

Tomorrow will be 1 week that I've been messing around with getting this all sorted out. 2 days of the previous Mentor rescheduling, and now all of this after he and I didn't work out. I'm wondering now if the Mentor said something when we met on Saturday that is causing all of this.

I mean really-WTF.. I need to start making money. Sitting on my butt is not working anymore. The total lack of professionalism was ok at first. Now it's beyond that.

So, the rant is over. Tomorrow I'll go over his head I guess.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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I mean really-WTF.. I need to start making money. Sitting on my butt is not working anymore. The total lack of professionalism was ok at first. Now it's beyond that.

So, the rant is over. Tomorrow I'll go over his head I guess.

J Snow, you're starting down a path to ruin. Let me explain......

You're a total newbie who is just getting started with a well-established company. At this point you have no experience, you've proven nothing to no one, and they have no idea if you'll even work out or not. So they assigned you a trainer and after a short conversation you make it clear to him you're not interested in having him train you. If you would have asked me, "Brett, if I don't go out with the trainer they assigned me to, what will happen?" I would have said, "They'll let you sit in the doghouse stewing for two weeks and then hopefully they'll give you another trainer. Hopefully."

I understand you didn't like the mentor's attitude but you have to understand the position you're in. You're hoping for an opportunity to learn the ropes of a new career and you're expecting this company to invest their time, money, equipment, and experienced drivers up front to teach it to you. They're taking a big risk by doing this. So the very first thing they try to do is assign you a mentor with "Diamond" status who is surely driving a beautiful, brand new rig and you decide that isn't good enough. You're not shopping around for wedding rings ya know. They're not going to follow you around like salespeople and let you browse the catalog of available mentors until you find one that lives up to your standards. As a rookie with no experience they have no idea if you're ever going to make it through training and become a productive professional driver for the company or not, but they know the odds are against it. Many new drivers coming into the industry never even make it to their first day as a solo driver.

Unfortunately your disapproval of the very first assignment you're given is a huge red flag to the company because people who come into trucking with their own set of expectations and demands almost never work out. It's trucking....there's going to be a long list of things you don't like every single day of your life. they figure if you're not tough enough and determined enough to handle a demanding trainer with high standards then chances are you can't handle life on the road. Now you may be thinking, "That's not true at all. I'll be able to handle it just fine." But that's not what that trainer is thinking and it's not what the company as a whole is thinking either. They figure, "Here's another guy who is about to become a statistic."

So now the company thinks you're a pain in the *ss and you think they're unprofessional. Seems odd that a rookie who needs to be escorted around the country by someone who knows what they're doing would call a well-established company unprofessional after they were going to put you in a brand new rig with a trainer that has attained "Diamond" status, but that's how you've interpreted this. What was it they failed to do? Do you need them to hand you a dozen roses, too?

Listen, one of two things is going to happen here and at this point it's still up to you. You're either going to realize that you're a rookie who is in no position to make demands so you'll keep a great attitude, put on a tougher skin, and get to work. Or you're going to be tossed to the curb because they figure you're too soft and you'll never make it in trucking anyhow.

I mean, of course you'd love a trainer with a sweet personality to go along with Diamond status and a brand new rig. Heck, why stop there? Maybe you can find one that can cook and read you bedtime stories too. You're also going to wish the DOT left you alone, customers loaded and unloaded you quickly, people didn't give you the finger 10 times a day when you did nothing wrong, there wouldn't be terrible traffic and weather every single day, you got home to your friends and family anytime you wanted, and our society respected the risks and sacrifices you're making so their lives will be easier. But I'm afraid none of that is going to happen.

As a driver there is really only one circumstance where you can put your foot down and make demands and that's in the area of safety and legality. It's up to you to determine whether or not your rig is safe to operate. It's up to you to refuse to do anything you feel is blatantly illegal or unsafe beyond the normal risks the job entails. But beyond the realm of safety and legality you should be going with the flow and doing anything you can to earn yourself a reputation as a hard working, safe, reliable professional.

I realize I've stated all this in a rather blunt manner and it isn't what you expected to hear. But I want to see you succeed and I promise you these companies aren't going to stand for you being picky about things. The company is willing to invest their time, money, equipment, and top-notch drivers to help you get your career off the ground and they expect you'll be willing to show you're equally dedicated and worthy of the opportunity. You're in their doghouse now so you'll have to dig your way out, but that's totally doable.

Here's an article I wrote called New Truck Drivers: Beware of Rocking The Boat. Take it to heart.


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.


Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.


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

Scott M's Comment
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Brett. Thanks! I want it real bad. To succeed. You made it real clear who the boss is when you're a trainee. I have read a tremendous amount you have written. You can put this post at the top. I may sound like false flattery, but that is not true- I am thankful and excited.

Diamond status also probably means accident free, no tickets and on time delivery. Those are my top goals.

J Snow. There's ALOT of us rooting for you. Good luck.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Bleemus's Comment
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Great advice Brett! We are pulling for you J Snow so take his words to heart.

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