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Publisher’s Comment: How to land that first job – and keep it!

Job security these days has become a bit of a challenge to find. It seems that a day doesn't go by without hearing of plant closures and massive layoffs....


Job security these days has become a bit of a challenge to find. It seems that a day doesn’t go by without hearing of plant closures and massive layoffs.

The latest news has GM eliminating 25,000 jobs over the next three and a half years.

Where in the hell will these people go? Job creation has unfortunately not kept pace with the times.

I’m one of the lucky ones. I started my career at 21.

After a year of college, I signed on with the Globe and Mail in the classified department as an ad copy boy.

A short time later, I was hired by Wadham Publications (I really miss those days) as an outside sales rep.

Two buy-outs and 25 years later, I’m still here.

In those days, companies were willing to put the time in to train the right individual.

Many of my friends landed great jobs right out of high school. Oh sure a degree helped, but lack of one didn’t necessarily eliminate the chances of being hired.

Many started on the order desk. From there, they moved into inside sales and finally, if they had proved their worth, they were promoted to outside sales representative.

Boy, have things changed!

I recently spoke to an executive of one of our country’s largest carriers. I asked him what many of you have been asking me.

How can new driver graduates possibly gain any experience considering no one will hire them without it?

He indicated to me that his company would bring in new drivers, providing an evaluation of their skills had been determined. In addition, one of their current drivers had to commit to spending at least six months on the road with the rookie.

If the newbie didn’t know anyone, the company would do its best to find a driver who wouldn’t mind being a mentor.

Sure, it’s not an ideal situation, especially if you’ve just forked out $5,000 for an A/Z course.

But I for one don’t blame fleet owners for being cautious.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out the investment they have in their equipment.

So what’s the answer for a new graduate?

Be the best you can be.

Your future employer will not only want to analyze your driving skills; he’ll also want to make sure you’re the type of person he or she wants representing their company.

Appearance, politeness and plain old good manners will go a long way in landing that all-important first job.

– Rob Wilkins is the publisher of Truck West and he can be reached at 416-510-5123.


Truck News

Truck News

Truck News is Canada's leading trucking newspaper - news and information for trucking companies, owner/operators, truck drivers and logistics professionals working in the Canadian trucking industry.
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