If you’re not taking advantage of picking the brains of your peers at industry events, you might want to start. In the transportation industry, peers play an important role in informing leadership. Safety managers, in particular, find value in learning from peers, according to Lytx Chief Client Officer Dave Riordan, who says their pursuit of best practices is fueled by their common mission to keep their drivers safe and make the roads safer.
Leadership, alignment, focus
“My experience has been that safety managers tend to be willing to share best practices that help the entire industry improve,” Riordan said. He cited the success of networking events hosted by the American Trucking Associations, the National Private Truck Council, and the International Foodservice Distributors Association. Lytx participates in these industry conferences along with nearly 100 other industry events to help share those best practices in managing fleet safety.
These events deliver information about successes based upon real-world experience that safety managers can employ at their respective companies and allow them to stay abreast of trends, he added. “A lot of safety managers want to create — or transform — a safety culture in their workplace based upon the most up-to-date information.”
Riordan cited Jeff Martin, vice president of Safety Services for Waste Management, as an example of a safety manager who is taking the lead in sharing best practices with his peers.
“He’s reached out across industries to clients in ground delivery, food distribution, and retail, among others,” Riordan said.
“He and members of his team share what they do that makes them successful. He’s invited people to their training facility in Florida. It allows his counterparts to understand Waste Management’s current practices and see how they stack up with driver training and driver safety benchmarks. Then his counterparts can change their own processes based on what they hear from him.”
Networking with industry peers also empowers leaders with a broader perspective that they can’t often obtain inside office walls. “That client-to-client interaction is a big reason why the Lytx User Group Conference and DriveCam Academy are so successful,” Riordan said.
The Lytx User Group Conference creates opportunities for people to learn how to operate the Lytx program better, Riordan says. He adds that clients who attend the conference learn a lot more than that from one another, sharing best practices about helping drivers understand the value of the DriveCam program, helping drivers manage distraction on the road and more.
DriveCam Academy, meanwhile, enables coaches from different companies to network with one another. It’s a unique opportunity, considering that most coaches usually only have the opportunity to share best practices and learn from other coaches at their own companies.
“We have found that the most effective way to share best practices is through having clients talk with each other,” Riordan said. “It’s better to have real examples from other people so you can learn about managing driver fatigue, for example. It’s about continuous improvement. Your job is to get better every year, and networking helps. If all you know is what you do, you don’t have a sense of what you could be missing.”