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Plumb the Depths of Youthful Brains to End Driver Shortage?

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Bud was perplexed. “What does this mean: ‘Research the cognitive functioning and behavior of 18-25 years-olds that could serve as the basis for graduated CDL criteria?’”

“Wow, Bud. You been taking some MBA courses that I don’t know about?” laughed Fritz as he ate his lunch at Bright Mountain Trucking. Cary gave a sardonic smile and munched away.

“Naw, but maybe I should. Sometimes I think I’m a dinosaur.”

“Well the first part means that people should look into how 18 to 25 year olds think and how they act. You know…what they like to do and why. Sounds like a tall order. Better be prepared for answers all over the map.

Then once they figure that out, they would use that information to come up with a scheme to get them a graduated CDL. I guess ‘graduated’ means that 18 to 25 year olds could somehow get their CDL in steps, rather than getting it all at one time.

“You mind if I ask where that question came from?”

“Figure out what these kids are thinking and then use that to get them a piecemeal CDL? You gotta be kiddin’ me. I got a survey from the American Transport Research Institute. They do a survey every year to find out what the critical issues are in trucking. I put down the driver shortage as one of my top three.”

“Makes sense”

“But then you have three more choices of what to do about it. That cognitive functioning stuff is one of the choices to solve the driver shortage.”

“Wow. Well, if it were me, I’d pick finding better ways to make trucking attractive. So I’d try to find out about what they like and dislike. Not just young people, everyone. There’s a certain type of person who’s going to last as a driver and then there’s a lot who won’t. It’s not for everybody.”

“Yeah, in the old days” offered Cary, “they said drivers wanted the open road, freedom, a chance to call the shots. Now you can monitor truck speed, hard braking, engine idling, location, whatever. Now they’re tethered with so many electronics…that can’t be a big deal anymore. Or if newbies think it is, they’re in for a big shock.”

“But I think you’d get more results if you find better ways to work with applicants,” continued Fritz.

“ Make sure that none fall through the cracks. Make sure that they get called back quickly before someone else takes them off the market. Make sure they’re treated right and not lied to. Make sure you’re explaining the company in easy-to understand language. Anything that makes the system more efficient is a plus. Think about it. When we made handling driver applicants a priority and got better systems to handle them, we began to improve.”

“Makes sense but those aren’t in the choices.”

“Oh! Well you could fill in the blank.”

“Yeah, but I’m more interested in filling my stomach right now.”

Lou Graziani: creator of Bright Mountain Trucking
“transportation guru, training expert, and imagineer.”

This story continues…

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