After the overdose of seriousness in my previous posts, I decided I’d come up here with something (a little) more light-hearted, and that can foster discussion as well! You see, the other night Stevie sent me an article on past versus the new, with a note – “you should talk about this on the blog”. I opened the link, read it, and had to agree with him. And here we are.
If you haven’t gone and read the article yet, it’s about the old-school way of looking at owner driver jobs, as opposed to the modern approach. They interviewed several veteran drivers, some of whom are retired, and gathered their views on how owner driver jobs should be conducted, and on how they are actually being conducted. The results are...well, let’s just say the ‘crotchety old man’ stereotype applies to this lot!
Now, this type of person, to me, is nothing new. I’ve known plenty of older fellows who like nothing more than to have a good whinge about how the ‘new generation’ just doesn’t get it. It doesn’t need to be about owner driver jobs, either; if you’ve ever been around someone my age, you will have heard them grumble about everything, from how smart-mouthed ‘kids today’ are to how they just won’t read, and are only interested in TV and PlayStation. This lot is not much different, except they’re moaning about couriers and van drivers.
The complaints these men have are quite common and familiar: how modern-day owner drivers don’t take pride in their job; how they think they know better than the vets; and how they disregard basic factors such as the speed limit. One or two of the interviewees (mainly the younger ones) do have a positive spin to put on the subject. One mentions a rookie driver he knows who is actually careful, while another states that the situation of owner driver jobs is not as bad as it is painted, and there is still plenty of demand.
The second page of the article is far more positive (even if there’s a few too many pie charts and statistics). Here, a specialist actually talks about how the focus of the industry should be on training and retention, as there is currently more supply than demand. Unfortunately, further down the page, the article mentions that many companies are hiring inexperienced rookies, and the rest are making owner driver jobs for themselves, which could lead to there being too many drivers and too little good service. There is also the fact that, while companies screen their potential employees, owner driver jobs don’t give that advantage, which could cause problems like the ones detailed above.
Oh dear – it seems this has turned out to be a serious post after all! I’m sorry – I promise something more light-hearted for next time!
Ta-ra for now!
PS: I’ve sent the link to Bill over at the Truck Stop. He says he will be talking about it shortly, so keep a look out!