There are heavy goods vehicle (HGV) drivers on all roads in the country. Some of them are in the early stages of their careers training with Easy as HGV and others are seasoned professionals who have been doing this for decades. However, they all have one thing in common. They are aware that the further they get through their HGV career, the more they’ll comprehend what it really takes to become successful. As you gain more experience as a HGV driver, you will gradually realise that there important qualities and skills that can make your working day smoother, safer and more efficient, once they are mastered. It is these skills that employers are after all over the UK when hunting for fleet drivers. So, if you’re in this field, or are planning to enter, it is worth learning them.
This is a key skill in every job, and it’s no exception in HGV driving. You might think organisation isn’t something you really need, as you are simply following a driving routine, but you couldn’t be further from the truth. Organisation is key when it comes to driving heavy goods vehicles. From planning your route to knowing what your load is, knowing the roadworks and even ensuring that all your paperwork is in order before leaving are all things that call for a keen eye in regards to organisation. You’ll be able to differentiate a successful driver from the rest if they know their route and alternatives in case they run into traffic.
Assuming Full Responsibility
Some drivers assume that once they load up their HGV, it’s not essential to know what’s inside. This is the wrong way of perceiving this form of career. Yes, it is your job to drive from one location to another, but it’s ideally your role to ensure that the goods get there in one piece. While some vehicles transport fabrics or food, others transport more fragile products and even valuable things like antiques. To ensure the load is safe, it is important that you take responsibility for the contents of your vehicle and become a guardian instead of just a driver. Once you have this mindset, you’re going to be keener in regards to driving habits and safety issues. A successful HGV driver takes responsibility for their cargo.
An excellent heavy goods driver will not just have an excellent understanding of how to drive safely in UK roads but will know a lot regarding vehicle mechanics. Understanding how a vehicle of such size works and a few basic tools to aid in minor repairs can make your life on the roadway easier. The ability to conduct your own maintenance not only saves you time and money but avoids breakdowns on the road.
Managing Your Stress
This is another important skill as HGV driving is no easy task. Even when behind the wheel, dealing with other drivers, getting stuck in traffic and driving through narrow roads can take a toll on you, both physically and mentally. There’s also the issue of spending long periods away from home and loved ones. Not to forget the loading and unloading heavy cargo and the pressure of meeting deadlines. An excellent heavy goods vehicle driver will know the causes and signs of stress and will take the right measures to handle it. This could be anything from taking regular breaks or using your time to listen to relaxing music. Know what works best for you and incorporate it into your routine.
Last but not least, an excellent HGV driver ideally knows about road etiquette. They know the driving rules and the behaviours and attitude of other drivers towards heavy goods vehicle drivers. Professionalism is to prepare for it and practice good etiquette while on the road. Not just while driving, but during any other activity, a successful HGV driver will conduct themselves professionally. True drivers take pride in their work, and this ultimately leads to professionalism.
There is no denying that driving a heavy goods vehicle is a challenging task. It is also a line of work that many do not like and tend to look down upon. However, possessing the above skills have can change the mindset of other people and make the roads safer. If you are an employer looking for such drivers, these are the key skills to assess.