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Humble Pie Served Up by Drivers & Carriers Every Day

By: Shane Jackson, Account Group Director, ACS Advertising

I’m a marketing professional in the transportation industry by trade, but have been involved with athletics at all levels for nearly 27 years of my life. The last ten years I have been fortunate to serve as a college softball umpire amongst the top conferences in the nation. My travels have carried me to many universities across the nation from Tampa, Florida to Raleigh, North Carolina – Houston, Texas to Memphis, Tennessee. These trips have involved many miles of travel and plenty of access on countless interstates at all times of the day and night.

You may ask why this is even relevant to my day job of helping carriers face the challenges associated with driver recruiting and retention. I recently added up the miles I’ve travelled and estimated the total at nearly 100,000 miles. In this time period, I have had my share of incidents and a few accidents along the way. Fortunately, nothing of the severe variety. I pride myself as a safe driver. This was instilled in me by my parents from the first time I got behind the wheel and took on the road in my 1985 Ford Fiesta stick shift.

I’ve been to many corporate offices of carriers, and I’ve seen how companies promote their safe drivers internally. I’ve seen walls adorned with pictures of drivers with one, two, even three million mile safe driver awards. They recognize these drivers in many ways for a job well done with no accidents or incidents while driving 18 wheel tractor trailer trucks along heavily travelled roads nationwide. In comparison, I try to equate this to the small number of miles I have driven in which I have the luxury of operating a smaller vehicle on the same crowded highways and interstates they encounter every day. I quickly realized that it was not comparable at all.

What I’m trying to say is when you come across publications both print and online in the transportation industry and see drivers listed among those with millions of miles of safe driving, remember a couple of important points. It takes a focused, driven individual to complete this type of achievement in today’s world. Million mile safe drivers are truly remarkable and deserve kudos from those of us who have never driven in their shoes.

A big salute to the carriers who reward and honor these drivers and to the drivers who have accomplished this milestone. I thought my 100,000 miles was quite an achievement. That humble pie was mighty tasty.

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