Truck Drivers’ Public Image: Avoiding Industry Stereotypes
The stereotypical truck driver doesn’t exactly have the best image. When most people think about a truck driver, they think of an overweight, scruffy looking male. While some truck drivers may still fit this image, it’s a misrepresentation of the trucking industry as a whole. So how can you, as truck drivers, make sure you project a professional image and how will that impact your career?
Taking care of yourself on the road
When you don’t have that typical situation where you’re reporting into work daily with your immediate supervisor looking over your shoulder, it can sometimes be very easy to allow yourself to fall into a downward spiral and let yourself go. How can we avoid this?
- Take a little bit of pride in yourself. When you look in the mirror, ask yourself, “Self, if I were at home, would I go out looking like this?”
- When you’re driving down the road and you take a deep breath and think, “Man, something stinks in this truck,” take a look around! When you see that you’re the only one in the truck, guess what? It’s probably you!
Truck drivers and their image
There are many people in the trucking industry that just don’t care. They crawl out of their bunk in the morning and just get behind the wheel and drive. Outsiders see these people and that becomes the overall perception of truck drivers. It’s the drivers that are dirty and smelly, who haven’t changed their clothes in several days and who haven’t showered in a week that people often relate to trucking. The driver that showers, changes his clothes daily, and looks for all outward appearances like everyone else in the general public usually is not even considered a truck driver when seen. One dirty driver tarnishes the image of ten good, clean truck drivers. This can only be changed one driver at a time, beginning with you.
Why should I maintain my appearance?
- If you look good, you feel good.
- Showering every day and putting on clean clothes will keep you healthy. If you’re healthy, you can drive and keep the income flowing.
- Eating a proper, well-balanced diet will keep your energy level up, and help keep you healthy, fit, and behind the wheel driving.
- When pulling through a scale house, or if you happen to be pulled over by a police officer on the side of the road, your appearance will definitely affect their attitude toward you. If you look like you just crawled out of bed and you smell like something died in your truck, the officer is going to take a closer look at you, your truck, and your paperwork. This can cause extended delays on the road when you would prefer to be driving, thus taking money out of your pocket.
Remember, a clean, well-rested driver who eats a well-balanced meal will not only create a positive public image, but will feel better and be motivated to make more money. A good rule of thumb is this: if your mother wouldn’t want to be seen out in public with you, it’s probably time for a change.
Keep the wheels turning!
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