Use Treatment, Transparency and Trust to Cut Driver Turnover

Posted by Scott Rea on November 9, 2016 in the category Retention
Red, orange and yellow trucks isolated on white background

An Unengaged Workforce

A Gallup study from 2015 stated that 70 percent of American workers hate their job or are completely disengaged. You can’t run a successful business with a miserable and unengaged workforce. Brian Fielkow simplifies what to do about these miserable statistics with the three Ts: treatment, transparency, and trust.
In an article from Entrepreneur entitled “I suggest you replace your suggestion box with this,” Fielkow cites the three Ts as a necessity to engage drivers and reduce driver turnover: treatment, transparency and trust.

Treatment

  • Treat people how you would like to be treated. Would you want your family members to drive for your company?
  • Get to know team members as people first and employees second.
  • Make the management style of “shut up and do your job” a deadly sin that is not tolerated in the company.

Transparency

  • Humans want to belong to a tribe. Share the “why” behind any decisions that are made. Your employees will feel a part of the process and the tribe. If you make all decisions behind closed doors, they will feel excluded and begin to look for another job.
  • Your managers and drivers will make better decisions on what to do if they understand why the mission is important.
  • Your front lines–mainly drivers–often have the best handle on root causes of problems and the best solutions. It’s a smart idea to include them as part of the problem-solving process.

Trust

  • Trust is at the foundation of every relationship – drivers are no exception.
  • Do you trust drivers to make the right decision or do you automatically assume they are going to mess up? Your team will pick up on your first reaction to drivers and follow your lead. You need to give drivers the opportunity to earn your trust.Replace the suggestion box with
  • Replace the suggestion box with regularly schedule listening sessions to understand the pulse of the business from the front lines: your drivers.

Think back to the last five drivers that left your company and give yourself an honest evaluation on the three Ts. How did you treat those drivers? How transparent were you with them? Did you trust them and did they trust you?

Keeping your trucks full of safe drivers is complex because there are many reasons a driver leaves you. The three Ts are a good structure to organize an analysis of your current state. Treat your drivers like you would your family members. Share the “why” behind major decisions made in the company. Focus your energy on living up to commitments to build up trust with your drivers and expect the same in return.

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