Today we’ll share some tips for becoming a female truck driver, but first, let’s address the underlying issue. America is short on female truckers. This shortage of female truckers seems especially acute in Texas. I recently got a great lesson in just how hard it is to get a decent job driving a truck. When doing my research, I found that there is a battle of attrition between demand and the availability of truckers. Fuel costs are reasonable right now, and that’s wonderful, but it leads to more demand and not enough truckers, so we need to encourage more women to drive. As long as men have dominated the trucking industry, that fact has mostly gone unexamined. Today that is slowly beginning to change. There is a lot of social and cultural change in the trucking industry driven by demand.
It’s hard enough to convince a truck driver to come work for you. And when that trucker does agree to give you a shot, you need to show that you mean business. A truck driver who can deliver a carload of sweet, sweet money for your business and her family will be spending far more time at home than anyone can imagine.
I shouldn’t have to spell out why that’s the case. Can anyone be a truck driver? No. It isn’t a philosophical question: It’s a question of career choice and ability.
The key to success in trucking for women is this: encourage them to treat themselves seriously — to put themselves in the shoes of anyone else out there who may be looking for a job. They’ll try hard and rise to the occasion.
Training to be a female truck driver is no picnic. Along with the restrictions imposed by a male-dominated culture, there are additional challenges that every trucker faces: Knowing which type of truck to drive and in what truck; the narrow dimensions of commercial vehicles; working at night and weekends. But none of these are insurmountable.
If you’re an employer looking for a new driver, don’t wait for your chance. Show her why she shouldn’t be frightened off by the attitude of her employers. Let them know they won’t be scared off, of course, by the hostility that women may face in trucking, but show them that you fear the attrition rate at trucking companies nationwide, and you need the most capable person for the job.
If you’re looking to work on your own, get your carrier authority, and don’t stop talking about it when you are hanging out with the guys. Let fellow truckers know how lucky they are to have a woman driving with them. Let them know that there are other women out there. And then, when they call looking for a female truck driver, say, “I am a woman truck driver now.” It may take some effort, but it will be well worth it.
Ladies, don’t sell yourselves short. America needs more women like you. Take charge. Take the wheel. Succeed. Let our team put you on the right path to freedom on the open road.