3 Ways to Make Your Drivers’ Professional Development Plans More Effective

Est. 3 min read

For many fleets, building an effective training program is the difference between setting themselves up for long term success and acquiescing to a slow decline. For that reason, fleets need to arm themselves with training best practices to improve their safety culture and retain drivers.

When assigning or conducting a professional development plan (PDP), a few best practices include: 

  • Consistently engage at-risk drivers 
  • Generate buy-in to the training process 
  • Continuous coaching for all drivers

Here are 3 Tips to Improve Your Driver Training

Consistently engage at-risk drivers

Consistent engagement ensures a driver is likely to change behaviors in response to lessons learned in training. If a driver is only made to think about their training once every two weeks, the lessons are less impactful. However, if they are continually reinforcing their training, then they are more likely to apply their lessons “outside the classroom.” PDPs can be significantly more effective if your trainers are coaching drivers each week over the course of their PDP to reinforce the lessons they’re being taught (see example here). 

Generate buy-in to the training process 

With the right technology in place, safety managers can share a driver’s overall performance data with them, helping them understand their strengths and weaknesses in a clear, objective format. This visibility can help drivers better understand why they’re being given extra training and convince even reluctant drivers that there is room for them to improve. Oftentimes, drivers want to be better but just don’t realize how many alerts they are triggering each day. 

Continuous coaching for all drivers

While some drivers need less coaching than others, even the safest drivers need to continually brush up on best practices to remain safe for the long-haul. Sending out quarterly or monthly reminders to every driver in a fleet is an effective way to elevate awareness of safe behaviors—a key driver of safety outcomes. Simply sending out a newsletter or holding general safety training for all drivers can help remind them what behaviors will keep them safe.

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