Even the Great Ones Watch the Game Tape
You’re pretty good at your job, and you’ve been doing it for years. How crazy would it be if your boss one day said, “let’s take a look at the tape from yesterday’s meeting…let’s see what we can improve on.”
If you were a professional athlete whose success and livelihood depends on keeping skills sharp, it wouldn’t sound so crazy. Pro athletes, from golfers to quarterbacks, watch their game tapes to constantly fine tune their performance and get insights from their coaches on how to improve. So think about it…everyone has skills required to do their job well that they need to keep sharp to remain at the top of their game.
Driving is no different. Commercial drivers bring a whole set of specialized skills to the game that can over time get rusty, or, even worse, bad habits can set in.
Have you ever tried to teach someone how to drive? Just think about how many of the actions you explain that have become instinct to you. Putting on your seatbelt, depressing the clutch, downshifting and slowing your speed before turning a corner, putting on your blinker, looking both ways, checking your mirrors – over the years, these all become actions you do without even thinking.
That’s the way habits are formed – repetitive motion within a specific context, over time. But if a driver has gotten into the habit of not wearing his seatbelt, rolling through stop signs, or gunning it at a green light, he or she is creating a pattern of risk that will likely result in a collision.
Refining performance, breaking bad habits, and reducing risk can all be accomplished with a knowledgeable coach armed with good insights. The problem is, where can you get your hands on the game tapes?
Using video to capture a driver’s behavior can be of enormous benefit to a coaching program, and can help prevent collisions before they occur by revealing and helping reverse risky driving habits that have become ingrained. Video can also reveal exceptionally good driving habits that can exonerate drivers involved in an incident.
While there are a lot of solutions that will track rapid accelerations, hard braking and sudden swerving, without the video, it’s difficult to tell what’s happening. With a camera facing forward to the road ahead, a swerve may reveal that the driver missed a pedestrian. Good job, right? But a camera facing inside the cab, triggered by the swerve, may uncover a driver distracted by texting, and only missing the pedestrian at the last second. Now, that’s useful video providing insights for coaching that can help improve the driver’s safety behavior.
By tracking and analyzing driver behavior over time, patterns surface that are indicative of an eventual collision. Adopt a video-based safety-solution using events captured on video to identify risk in your fleet, coupled with behavior-based coaching insights, and you have the equivalent of a professional athlete’s performance improvement program. This is exactly what Terry Jenkins, Operations Manager of Cargo Transporters in Claremont, North Carolina did. Using the DriveCam® Program by Lytx, Jenkins had this to say about the technology, “We are a better company for the video event recorders that are there. We’re a safer company and we’ve changed those behaviors…”
As demonstrated in Cargo Transporters’ case, the added benefit of this approach is that you’re not just making your drivers better – you’re also taking steps to save lives and reduce costs associated with collisions.
If you have any questions on the above article, contact Great West Casualty Company below. Also, feel free to contact us for questions on truck insurance or quotes.