It takes a determined individual to run a successful business as an owner-operator in the trucking industry. The pros and cons can certainly weigh heavily when deciding to become an independent contractor. There are some important factors to consider in the day-to-day operations that can help in becoming an effective owner-operator.
The following questions may help with any doubts that might be holding you back.
Personal Assessment – Is Operating Your Business Right for You?
The best way to answer this question is to stop and look at your own personal life and expectations. Evaluate your work ethics, desired time at home and your long-term career goals.
If you are highly motivated, then you may be ready for the responsibility it takes to be a business operator. It is important to cultivate the mental attitude you must handle as well as all the issues you will be facing. Individuals must understand how to take responsibility for everything that happens. You are making the decisions and the outcome of those decisions fall into your lap – good and bad. Be resilient and be prepared.
What Does Being an Owner-Operator Require?
Time management and patience are essential while working for a reputed nationwide trucking company, transportation logistics provider, and freight dispatching company such as Landstar. This will include being able to sit in front of a computer, identifying loads, planning trips and filling out the required paperwork.
Owner-operators should also understand the economy and sector of the business and keep revenue and income expectations realistic. Successful owner operators budget for the slow times of the year and usually have a backup plan.
Confidence in your methods and discipline will help you execute your strategies.
Will You Be Able to Perform Basic Maintenance on Your Vehicle?
Everyday wear and tear is a certainty with long hauls. As an independent owner-operator, knowing what to do will come in handy when your truck is calling for help. Becoming familiar with your equipment and maintaining it will minimize your expenses which will improve your bottom line.
Be proactive, be ready to change a battery or fuel filter. Have a good toolset and the mind frame to be ready to use them at any given time.
There are many other key characteristics of a successful owner-operator. Do not be afraid to inquire with others who are successful in the trucking industry. They can offer valuable advice that can help you attain the level of success that you desire as well as what they have achieved. Build on what you learn and you will be on the right path to becoming a successful owner-operator.