If you're thinking about getting involved in the world of trucking, you may have a number of misconceptions about what the job could mean for you. Especially for newcomers, there can be a significant adjustment that takes some getting used to.
Fortunately, if you go in prepared, the transition is much easier to handle, and we have some facts about trucking jobs that should help on that front:
1) It's mentally demanding
You may think you would get tired if you're driving for many hours every day, and that's certainly true — but maybe not for the reasons you think, according to the Advanced Career Institute. You have to be highly aware of everything you do behind the wheel, and that takes a mental toll for which new drivers must be ready.
2) It's not always going to go smoothly
Think about any time you've taken a long road trip, and the traffic you encountered, the closed gas stations and restaurants, and everything else that caused a headache, the Advanced Career Institute said. Truckers deal with these issues every single day, and they can throw off your plans if you're not careful.
3) It takes some getting used to
Like any new job, there's definitely an adjustment period, but for truckers, the change in lifestyle can be extreme, according to Smart Trucking. There are a lot of things you have to keep track of and you will make mistakes from time to time. Don't beat yourself up over them.
4) You'll be starting at the bottom rung
As with a lot of other businesses, new truckers are usually going to have the fewest options for the routes they run, the days they're on the road and so on, Smart Trucking added. Seniority is important in this industry and you're not always going to have the easiest routes just because they're simple and straightforward.
5) You'll need to adjust to a very different schedule
As a trucker, you have a lot to think about, and the fact that you're going to be on duty for 14 hours a day will likely represent a big change to your work schedule, Smart Trucking further noted. You'll need to figure out a timing that works for you,and that might take some time early on.
6) Proper rest is going to be vital
In a lot of jobs, you can show up to work rather tired and still be fairly effective, but that's not the case for truckers, according to Trucking Truth. When you're behind the wheel of a big rig, you need to be fully alert and ready to react to any situation.
7) You should rely on trucker-specific tech
Sure, you've driven with the help of a GPS device, but that won't do when you're driving a tractor trailer, Trucking Truth stated. Your tech needs to be made specifically for big trucks, because it might otherwise put you on roads a vehicle that big rig won't be able to pass safely, or at all.
8) You have to up your communication game
Finally, a big part of being a successful trucker is staying in touch, Trucking Truth recommended. You need to check in with dispatch and your destination companies regularly, so communication skills are a must.
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