Phoenix Capital Group took to the Twitter Polls, to find what posts our followers wanted to see more. We asked ourselves, “what can we do to help truck drivers, new and established. What could they use from a freight factoring company, besides cash?” Turns out, informative blogs are what the people want. Phoenix Capital Group set out to various social media platforms, Yahoo Answers, quizzes, and forums to collect the wisdom that current truck drivers have to share, and here’s what we found!
Phoenix Capital Group representatives asked truck drivers at the Mid-America Trucking Show what questions they had when they first started their driving career:
- Steve W. stopped by our booth and said his question was, “Are there opportunities for advancement, or will I be driving forever?”
What we found: There is not many opportunities to advance your truck driving career. There are a few limited opportunities in which you can move into an office position, such as becoming a fleet manager , but overall, there is very little in the way of advancement. Drivers tend to simply move to other companies as their experience grows to a better paying job or (if not already) become an owner-operator. Starting your own trucking company is a great way to advance in your career. Owner-operators can start with one truck, take advantage of our freight factoring program, add a few drivers to their fleet, then have the cash flow they need to survive without our help!
2. A young man named Jeremy S. said he didn’t know where to start once he decided to become a truck driver. “I have no idea what training or schooling I needed. Heck, I didn’t even know if I needed a high school diploma!”
What we found: If you want to become a truck driver the first step would be to find a truck driving school. TO drive a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) you will need a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) through the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in your state. Paying for driving school is a common bump in the road for most individuals looking to attend truck driving school (or any school, let’s be real). You can pay out of pocket, but sometimes companies will pay for your schooling if you commit to drive for them. As far as your high school diploma goes, there are truck drivers without high school diplomas, and others driving with Doctorate degrees!
3. Christopher, a truck driving Veteran, came by our booth and gave us a question that should have crossed his mind when he decided to become a truck driver, and followed up with a very honest answer; “Does driving a truck for a living put ample amounts of stress of your relationships?”
Christopher’s answer to his own question: “Absolutely. Driving a truck while married or in a relationship brings up unique issues that definitely rethink the lifestyle. I’m not discouraging anyone, but I’m honestly telling you it’s not a glamorous life. In every relationship, it’s important to communicate, plan dates, and Holidays. When you’re on the road so often, you have to put extra work into everything you do. Stay positive, work hard and you’ll get through the challenges together.”
After the Mid-America Trucking Show we were curious to who else had great advice who didn’t attend the tradeshow? We turned to Yahoo Answers to find out!
Advice for new truck drivers?
- Genesis replies, “Take your time on the road always, don’t sleep behind the wheel, get some rest, go to a hotel if needed, eat healthy, bring extra clothes with you, stay hydrated, and have a first aid kit.”
- Sammy says, “Go slow. The higher your seat is the slower it looks like your vehicle is traveling. Remember that your center of gravity is higher in a truck than a car, so you’ll flip over easier.”
- Mrs. Bears stated, “Stay on high alert at all times.”
- Wes replies, “When traffic is moving above 40 MPH give yourself enough space where it is about the size of your rig and what you are hauling. When your view is not obstructed, look at the cars and conditions that are about 5-7 seconds ahead of you. Look up garmin GPS devices, they have devices designed for truckers, gives better information for you.”
- Poppy told us, “Manage your money well so you are not risking everything you worked for. Stay focused on your driving, not your phone or music. Use care in truck lots to not hit anything or to get mugged by a thug.”
What do you WISH someone had told you before you became a truck driver?
- Ms. Bittner says, “Me personally, nothing. But our daughter dated a trucker for a while, and he often said he wished it had been made clear that many local and area truckers are expected to load and unload whatever they’re carrying. He hated that aspect, whether it was ice for bars and restaurants or appliances or something that was light and easy.”
Life on the road can be difficult. What do you do to make life easier as you live out of a truck?
- Ann suggests, “For food I have a mini fridge in my truck. Pack a few home cooked meals, when driving eating out isn’t that good because the fats. When driving if you do eat out Find A Way To Work Out. The fats in the food will keep up with you. A mini fridge is the best way to go it is an investment that will save you cash. For showering I have been to many truck stops and there has been shower. If your truck doesn’t have an AC take showers as much as possible.”
- Gearhead says, “Get yourself a good GPS and hands free cell phone!”
- Casey also says, “I take flashlite, gloves, small tool box, detergent as it’s expensive in truckstops, two towels, washcloths, baby wipes, enough clothes to last 7 days, shower shoes, briefcase for all the paperwork, blankets, pillows, sheets, cell phone charger, etc. All this really helps on the road!”
I’m new and about to go on the road as a truck driver. Should I use freight factoring? I’m heard the good, the bad, and the ugly.
- Jet tells us, “I’m a retired long haul truck driver. If you have a strong social life and close family, you may want to rethink your decision to become a truck driver. If you can’t give those things up longterm, find a job where you can stay home and sleep in your own bed every night.”