What Your Driving Habits Say About Your Business
There’s no question that safe driving is important. It saves lives, saves gas, saves your car, and might actually save you a little money on your car insurance rates. However, to a commercial driver, safe and conscientious driving can do a lot more than save you money on your annual premium.
It could help advertise your brand and boost your customer base. Really!
Now, don’t get me wrong. Commercial drivers face plenty of challenges on the road besides just getting from point “a” to point “b”. Time is money, and drivers must reach their destination quickly and in a timely manner. Also, the sheer amount of driving that one must do to get to point “b” can eventually take its toll, cutting into rest and sleep time and creating drowsy drivers. Not always anybody’s fault, really. Sort of the nature of the business, if you will.
The average private commuter will likely never think about this until they’re involved in a wreck due to a phenomenon called the “disinhibition effect”, says author, Tom Vanderbilt. We as personal drivers enjoy a sense of anonymity while we’re in our cars. Just like on the Internet, no one knows who we are, we can skirt the rules and be rude (mostly) without consequences, then drive away. As long as we don’t get a traffic citation, we feel that we’re off the hook… and in a sense, we probably are.
However, when your commercial vehicle has your company logo emblazoned on its doors or side, you are no longer anonymous. You are representing your business for better or for worse. As a business owner, you shake hands, pass out business cards, and share testimonial stories, but just as important is the first impression you make to people on the road: how you and your employees drive.
But how much does it really matter?
According to the statistical rise in driver training programs and “How’s My Driving?” bumper stickers, a lot. Though call centers still have to filter for legitimate claims, driver reports have not only made commercial drivers safer and more conscientious, but have instilled an equal sense of trust in those who remain transparent about their driving habits, even if the driver reporting hotline is never actually used. At least 10% of these calls were from people calling to actually pay the driver a COMPLIMENT. It may seem like much ado about nothing, but people remember things like that, and it reflects greatly on how your customers perceive you.
So, do you have to have a bumper-sticker on the back of your vehicle, too? Not necessarily, but it DOES illustrate the importance of good driving habits for your commercial automobiles as rolling billboards for your business.
Keep in mind that being punctual and productive is very important in the field of commercial vehicles, but at the same time, so is making a good first impression. Your car/truck/van/whatever will likely be the first impression you’ll make on your potential customer-base.
Make it a good one!
First Baldwin Insurance