National Truck Driver Appreciation Week presents an opportunity to appreciate and thank drivers for their commitment, service, and dedication to an extremely difficult job in an extremely important industry. While drivers often get recognized for delivering freight of all kinds, the essential products that keep us healthy, safe and our economy growing, there are so many more things to appreciate about them.
Here are some things I admire and appreciate about truck drivers:
- Their hard-working nature. Drivers are some of the most hard working and committed people I know. They sign-up for long hours, have to multi-task in every aspect of their job, are some of the best communicators out there, and are away from their families for long periods of time. From pick-up to delivery, there’s so much more to a truck driver’s job that driving the truck.
- Their ability to solve problems. Think about everything a driver must navigate to deliver freight. Routes and traffic, weather and road conditions, pandemics, arrival and departure times, rescheduled events, parking, equipment failures and more. A driver’s ability to navigate all these potential problems, and get the freight delivered, is impressive and amazing.
- Their commitment to safety. Trucks are big and can be dangerous. Drivers are trained and qualified to operate them safely. It’s a big risk to sit behind the wheel and drive for long hours. They care about getting freight delivered safely for everyone.
- Their commitment to diversity. As a young professional in this industry, I didn’t hear much about women as a viable source of truck drivers. That has changed, and today women make up around 8% of the U.S. truck driver population. That number is growing strong. I thank and solute all the women truck drivers who show up every day to get freight moved, as well as the Women In Trucking Association for supporting women drivers.
- Their ability to grow business. A longtime friend and colleague, Scott White, who owns Alabama Motor Express started his career as a driver. He also had a plan to grow himself and his driving career into something bigger. Scott leveraged his driving experience, knowledge of customers and carrier operations and was able to turn his driving career into a business ownership opportunity. Starting with just that one truck he was able to grow AMX into a highly successful company. To this day I’ve not only had the pleasure to work with Scott, but also with his sons Collins and Taylor White. The family relationship we’ve developed is one I’ll cherish forever.