Getting Along with Your OTR Trainer and Learning After CDL Training
After you complete CDL training, the next step in your journey to becoming a truck driver is to go on the road with a company trainer. Your OTR trainer will teach you a lot about the industry. During this time, you will get most of your hands on driving experience. Sharing a small truck with another person is no easy feat though, so today I’m going to share my tips on getting along and sharing a space with your company trainer.
The Right Attitude
A good rule of thumb is to have a positive attitude, pay attention, and have a willingness to learn. If you let your trainer, he or she will prepare you in the correct way to become a professional truck driver. After you upgrade to a first seat driver you’ll be thankful you paid attention!
Tips for Getting Along
Having two people in a small, confined space can be tough, but I have a few tips for driving with trainers and preventing tension in the truck. First of all, after the boundaries are set, honor them! Number two — Keep your area neat and clean. Don’t borrow something from your trainer’s area without asking. Don’t bring too many items with you so that your stuff invades your trainer’s territory. Remember, this is his truck. Give each other space and don’t take advantage of each other. If you smoke, crack the window, and if you dip, throw out your spit cup! Don’t be loud or overbearing, and do your best to treat each other the way you would want to be treated.
Learning from Your Trainer
Let the trainer know that you want to learn everything you can. Ask questions and tell the trainer if you’re not understanding something. Give the them an opportunity to teach you the correct way and write down what they tell you. Don’t make them repeat themselves because you’re not keeping notes. If you don’t know, ask! Prepare a notebook in advance. Section it off so that it will be easier to refer to later. Build a good relationship with your trainer, and ask them if they would mind if you called for advice when you need it.
If you keep these tips and suggestions in mind, you will learn a great deal during your time with your OTR trainer. Remember, your trainer has stood where you stand now. Listen to his suggestions and apply them to your own training, and you’ll be a professional truck driver in no time.