Leadership's Role In Controlling Risk

A motor carrier’s leadership team plays a pivotal role in shaping company culture and defining business practices. With this responsibility and influence, leaders are tasked with steering the company in a direction that best positions the organization to achieve performance goals. Arguably, one of the most important functions within a trucking company that directly impacts these metrics is risk control.

Risk control refers to a motor carrier’s efforts to prevent losses from happening and to help minimize losses after an incident has occurred. Losses can result from a variety of preventable and non-preventable incidents, such as vehicle accidents, work-related injuries, roadside inspections, and moving violations to name a few. Whatever the circumstances, a motor carrier’s leadership team should be actively involved in risk control efforts. Below are some ways leaders can demonstrate their support and be engaged in this critical function.


The leadership team can establish clear safety standards through defined policies and procedures. However, this can be a liability if the company does not practice what it preaches. Before any policy and procedure is implemented, ensure it will be communicated to affected workers and adhered to. Consider seeking guidance from legal counsel beforehand as well.

Additionally, promote accountability throughout the company by emphasizing that safety is a shared responsibility. This can include following regulations, obeying safety rules, and encouraging workers to report unsafe conditions. Correcting these issues sends a clear message that the company values worker safety.


Allocating resources for training and education are two ways the leadership team can promote risk control. New employee orientation and ongoing safety training are great opportunities to communicate risks and train workers on techniques to prevent accidents and injuries. Likewise, developing mentors and driver supervisors who can champion the risk control message is another way to keep safety top of mind with everyone.

Another way the leadership team can support risk control efforts is to invest in technology. Inward- and outward-facing cameras, collision avoidance systems, telematics, etc. can help provide real-time insights into driver behavior and vehicle performance. These technologies can also help to prevent accidents and can help exonerate a driver involved in an accident.

”Promote accountability throughout  the company by emphasizing that  safety is a shared responsibility.”



Measuring safety and compliance performance is another way the leadership team can be involved in risk control efforts. Conducting regulatory compliance audits, inspecting facilities, and monitoring individual and company results in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Safety Measurement System (SMS) can provide keen insights on the effectiveness of risk control efforts.


Leaders should regularly assess the effectiveness of risk control efforts and seek ways to continuously improve. Soliciting employee input is essential since they have front-line knowledge of operations, and when improvements are made, they are more likely to buy into the change and support future efforts.

In conclusion, a motor carrier’s leadership team holds a pivotal role in the success of the company’s risk control efforts. By fostering a safety-first culture from the top-down; implementing risk control measures; conducting safety training for new employees and providing ongoing education and development throughout the year, auditing, and measuring of safety performance; and promoting continuous improvement, leaders can better position their companies to reduce the risk of losses and achieve their organizational objectives.

For more information on how to manage risk more effectively, contact your Great West Risk Control Services represeantative and insurance agent.

Note: These lists are not intended to be all-inclusive.


  • Allocate resources to invest in new safety technology and comprehensive training programs.


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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