Attributes of a good lorry driver

3rd Nov
Be a good lorry driver

The UK definitely needs more lorry drivers, with several studies having estimated a shortfall of 50,000 or more. So, what are the skills and attributes needed to become a successful HGV driver? If you are already an experienced driver, what can you do to become even better at your job? And if you are considering driving as a career, is it the right path for you to follow?

A sense of responsibility. A driver is tasked, not only with handling a large vehicle over long distances, but also with ensuring that the goods they are delivering reach their destination in good condition. The companies that employ them, or engage them on short-term assignments, need to be confident that their vehicles are in safe hands.

Alertness. HGV drivers are of course on the road for long periods, and must ensure that they maintain the highest levels of concentration and adapt to changing road conditions. They need to know when to take a rest break, and when that strange sound or vibration coming from their truck could be a sign of a bigger fault with the vehicle.

Stress management. Drivers inevitably find themselves in stressful situations, such as being stuck for hours in major traffic jams, having been driving all day. Spending a lot of time away from home, and away from their families, is often part of the job.

Customer service skills. Drivers must be courteous to clients when picking up and delivering their goods. Deliveries and pick-ups must be made on time. Drivers can also expect to have to interact on occasions with their employers, other drivers and maintenance staff, and again courtesy is vitally important.

Ability to work independently. Drivers inevitably find themselves alone for long periods, and must be comfortable with this rather lonely aspect of the job.

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