Build a Positive Culture that Inspires Employees to Thrive

Laughing truck drivers

Every motor carrier has a company culture that reflects the organization’s values. This culture can be positive and beneficial to the organization’s success or negative and cause it to stagnate or even fail. In either case, positive or negative, a company’s culture is contagious. People tend to adopt the values of those around them, especially at work, and infect others with the good or bad. That is why positive values are so important to motor carriers.

Values are deeply-held beliefs or principles that influence decisions, and decisions are what dictate behavior. Behavior is the way a person acts, such as a safety-minded driver who uses three-point contact whenever climbing in or out of the truck. When a motor carrier declares safety as a core value by defining what is deemed acceptable behavior and holds all employees accountable to that standard, the organization sets the foundation for a positive culture. Employees will be inspired to give their best because they know their employers care about their well-being and are invested in their success.

When an organization is thriving, it can easily infect others, and the positive can be found in every aspect of operations. Take applicant screening, for example. Suppose an applicant driver comes looking for a job at a motor carrier, and, as a part of the driver qualification process, the motor carrier conducts a comprehensive road test and requires the applicant to pass an expanded physical as a condition of employment. Also, once hired, the driver must pass a probationary period that includes an extensive onboarding program that stresses crash and injury prevention training.

This would send a powerful message to the driver that safety is valued by the organization, right? Imagine walking into the terminal of a motor carrier like this. Many Great West insureds have achieved this kind of success, but it did not happen overnight. It took courageous leadership.

In her book, Contagious Culture, Anese Cavanaugh provides the key to creating a positive culture that inspires employees to thrive: intentional energetic presence (IEP). Cavanaugh says about leaders, “Studies have shown that up to 93% of our impact is in how we “show up”—while only 7% of our impact is in the words we actually say.” Her IEP methodology stresses the importance of leaders intentionally impacting others by projecting a healthy and energetic presence every day without burning out. This charismatic leadership style can be infectious, and, when supporting the organization’s core values, it can have a profound impact on the culture of the organization.

Source: Retrieved from


Call to Action

  • Document the company’s core values and communicate them to employees.

  • Intentionally stress the core values in regular and positive communications to employees.

  • Assign a senior leader to explain the core values to new employees during onboarding and  orientation.

Apply at least one core value to the company’s Safety Measurement System (SMS) results.

successful driver management book call to action

The information in this article is provided as a courtesy of Great West Casualty Company and is part of the Value-Driven® Company program. Value-Driven Company was created to help educate and inform insureds so they can make better decisions, build a culture that values safety, and manage risk more effectively. To see what additional resources Great West Casualty Company can provide for its insureds, please contact your safety representative, or click below to find an agent. 

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© Great West Casualty Company 2018. The material in this publication is the property of Great West Casualty Company unless otherwise noted and may not be reproduced without its written consent by any person other than a current insured of Great West Casualty Company for business purposes. Insured should attribute use as follows: “© Great West Casualty Company 2018. Used with permission by Great West Casualty Company.”

This material is intended to be a broad overview of the subject matter and is provided for informational purposes only. Great West Casualty Company does not provide legal advice to its insureds, nor does it advise insureds on employment-related issues. Therefore, the subject matter is not intended to serve as legal or employment advice for any issue(s) that may arise in the operations of its insureds. Legal advice should always be sought from the insured’s legal counsel. Great West Casualty Company shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss, action, or inaction alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the information contained herein.