Trucking Risk and Insurance Podcast

NRRS, What Is It and Where Is It Being Held? With Kelly Henderson & Kim Richardson

March 12, 2022 John Farquhar & Chris Harris Season 2 Episode 20
Trucking Risk and Insurance Podcast
NRRS, What Is It and Where Is It Being Held? With Kelly Henderson & Kim Richardson
Show Notes Transcript

To Register:

More Information:
Kim Richardson, President – TransRep 1-800-771-8171 ext. 201
Kelly Henderson, Executive Director, THRSC – 1-877-858-1908 
Kim Sytsma-Hill - TransRep 1-800-771-8171 ext. 205

Your Hosts Are:
John Farquhar
Summit Risk Solutions:
1 226 802-2762

Chris Harris
Safety Dawg Inc:
1 905 973 7056

Hey, how are you doing today? Folks? Glad you could make it here to the trucking risk and insurance podcast with your hosts. Chris Harris, John Farquhar, two of the best looking risk management guys. There is in the industry, but enough of that, we're here to talk about our guests. We have two special guests today, and we're going to talk about a program that's coming up. It's going to be out in Atlantic Canada, and it's a conference or a symposium actually. And it's called the National Recruiting and Retention. Symposium. It says it's about recruiting and retention and it's all about trucking drivers staff within your organization. So without any further ado, let's get at it and we'll meet our guests, Kelly and Kim. Hey, welcome everybody. How are you? Well, you can already tell far choirs beyond himself. It's a Friday afternoon, right? Mr. Kim, how are you? Yeah, it's great to see you folks. Thanks for Avodah song. Okay. It's great. Kelly, can you do a brief introduction of yourself? Sure. So I'm Kelly Henderson, executive director for the trucking human resource sector, council Atlantic. We're a not-for-profit organization who works with the trucking industry on all their HR issues. And you guys do an outstanding job, Kim, I'll throw it over to you. Can you, can you introduce yourself? Yeah, absolutely. Thank you. I'm Kim Richardson. I'm president of care Ts, and also the founder and president of trans rep. The NRS is a trans up care test Fetcher. And we're partnering with, with our good friends out east, the people that we've partnered with this work for many, many years, and we're really, really excited to do what we're doing. So thanks again for having us. Hey, it's an honor. It truly is because of course, John and I at least, yeah, John, you attended the NRS. We sat together the one that was here in Ontario. So we got kind of a good idea of what to expect, except you've got some different speakers out there and I think we should also mention some awesome sponsors out there. Right? Well, I mean, let's give a shout out to revolution staffing. Our friend, Dave McDonald does a great job. And of course, Maryland from 10th street is also sponsoring, right? 10th street is a sponsor out there. So that's awesome that people have stepped up to the plate. Yeah, there are two key. There are two key sponsors. So we've done things a little bit different than the east and what we've done here, here in Ontario. And then they do things different out of the east and then always do things really well. But we have, we have two key sponsors. We have a bunch of other sponsors, which clued up event friends, sponsorship that include booths, but that's two major sponsors are really pleased to have the boat back because they sponsored it bath Well, and these events don't happen without a little sponsorship. They need some support. Now, the reason they happen And that's why I wanted to give a shout out to the sponsors because it is, it's extremely important that everything gets supported like this. Hey, I'll never go ahead, Johnny. I was just going to say the last two symposiums have not happened in face-to-face environments because of the pandemic. So, and it's great that postbox there's supported the, the virtual conferences that happen. So that was even great to continue that and keep moving forward into the, into the real life phase. Again, It, and who's not excited about having face to face handshaking events again. Yeah. I mean, Likes it when I, or Kim, Kim likes it when I come up and give them a hug and then Chris is more of a half hug. So Yeah. Well I know who you like more. Okay. Vera, am I pronouncing Tavira? Sherman's name correctly? It's Tova Tova Sherman. So like Nova Toba. Well, that's perfect, but hold, that is a speaker that I have not heard of before. And I'd love to use for both of you to explain what Tov is going to be talking about. So I'll jump in first. Tova is going to talk about people are not people with disabilities, but people who are underrepresented in the sector, so it could be people with disabilities. It could be people with, with other barriers to employment or what have you, but then she's also gonna tie into that mental health and how that impacts work and workplaces and how employers can do a little bit more to help make sure those doors are open for, for employees or potential new employees to be a part of the part of our sector. And when we're looking at shortages that we're facing, it is so important for us to be recognizing that we need diverse strategies to get more people into the sector. And there's a lot of good people that want to be a part of it. So we need to make sure those doors are open and stay open. Yeah. I was going to say, this industry has changed so much over the last 20 years. You know, we've got a different dynamic of driver coming in, and this is deserving. This isn't the old boys club anymore where, you know, I, you a hundred hours backwards for crying out loud. And I ran a nap. I'm good. That's not life anymore. We've got a lot of union folk in here and whatnot, and they still want a lot of home time, family time. So with all the pressures and stresses of the job and the industry and what goes on out there, it's great to have a coach like Tova to be able to give you some information on how you can manage these particular health related issues. And I, I, you know, in reading some about this, I thought, oh, disability, a lot of people would not think that a person with disability could work in the trucking industry, but they can, there's so many jobs within the organization that could be, be managed by people with disabilities. Absolutely. We're working with two groups right now, one with autism, Nova Scotia on getting a couple of people in as professional drivers. And we're also working with another group who removes disabilities or disability barriers, getting them into the warehouse, getting them in as a dispatcher. I mean, there's so many broad opportunities and we have really great careers from this. So from the sector itself. So why wouldn't we want to share that? Exactly. Kim, can you add something? Yeah, absolutely. You know, when, when we first started talking about Toba, Kelly made the recommendation, the first thing I did was go on YouTube and watch her. And, you know, I was blown away. She's energetic, she's she is herself dynamic. She has a, a very unique way of presenting, which I think is going to be really, really well-accepted by those who are attending, you know, Johnny, you talked about the different dynamics in our industry now with drivers and, you know, we all see that through the entire company. Right? I get so excited when I go on a zoom and, and most recently in the sub-meetings and walk into the terminals and offices. And I see those young people now and the different cultures for me, for me, that's, that's heartwarming number one, and it's needed. Number two are the future of our industry. Yeah. I saw the old guys with white hair are not immortal, you know, w we're going to move on and we need those young folks to come in and step up behind us and, and carry that on. You know, so, and, and, and it's, you know, I think that's a bit of a sad thing that we're seeing in the industry. You know, the, the pioneers, their kids, some of them have stepped in and taken and moved on and are running the companies and others have gone, not interested, have a nice day I'm out of here. You know, I'm going to go on a couple of McDonald's or Tim Martins, you know, so we need folks to come in because drivers are not growing on trees. Well, I recently I was talking to a general manager for a fairly large trucking company, about 200 power units. And he was saying that, Hey, I need truck drivers, but I need mechanics. I need a shop supervisor. I need a safety and compliance manager. I need a dispatcher. I need a customer service rep. He said, if you can find me anybody in trucking, I can hire them. That's why the national overtreatment our intentions and posing, I think, is so valuable and such a great leadership move by transcript to host. And to take that, take that on is because we do have so many needs in the sector. And we, we really tunnel vision that we need drivers, which of course we do, but we do need those other roles. In at least the symposium gives us an opportunity to actually showcase those roles, to highlight recruiters and also to look at different strategies for, as you said, Chris, for all occupations. Yeah. I don't think there's a position in trucking at the moment that has too many people. I think, look at all the skill though, like a diesel mechanic, my God, what a great profession that is, and we need them. Well, I think one of the things that we really struggle with in this industry, and I see it a lot, every time I go see a customer, I see the same thing everybody's looking for that experienced person, regardless of the role, regardless of the job they want, they're looking for that guy. That's got two years experience doing this or a year doing that or five years doing that. And we're just not finding them. They're not out there anymore. You and all the old guys like us are retiring off and not interested. What we have to start looking at is the new people coming in, you know, the young people and go have they got the right attitude? Have they got the work ethic? Because we can teach the skill. We can train. We can mentor Kim. I think you're above me. You got a training school, you know, and that's what you do. You take new people that have no experience and teach them how to drive a truck. You know, there's other places that teach people how to be a mechanic. And then you have all these great people already in your organization to go help me mentor these new people that will help you in retention. Because if I help these people, they're going to want to stay. They're going to want to enjoy what we do here. Maybe one of those people down the road will also become a mentor themselves. Well said, Johnny, I think we might've missed a speaker. Sorry to cut you off there. But once she gets The old adage that, Hey, I stayed at a holiday holiday Inn express last night, but I haven't done one of those in two years. There you go. Sorry. You were saying something. No, I was just commending Johnny on, on what he had to say and how he said it. It, you know, when you take a look at the insights of the operations of our companies, you know, we, we always see the drivers. We always see the mechanics and we see the external stuff. But when you take a look at what goes on inside to make that company successful, I think there's so many careers and job opportunities inside the building. And what excites me is that those individuals that are coming in and being mentored as, as Johnny referred to by like good people within the company they're growing within the company. And I think the industry is isn't a better place because we're, we're more business savvy than we were 25 years ago. Like what's the pace at trucking. The profit margins for their own carriers are pretty slim and have good people and retain them, keep them is really critical. So, you know, the HR, the sales, the mentorship, the it people, or the dispatching of human resources that is so critical to the success of an operation. Yeah. And you know, it kind of leads us to another speaker the way this conversation's going. And I, I didn't plan it this way, but some young fellow by the name of Matt Richardson, who's one of those up and coming, you know, transportation professionals is also speaking. Kim, do you want to talk about what Matt's going to be addressing at the symposium? Yeah, for sure. Thank you. And Kelly, please jump in at any time, that's actually going to be moderating a panel. It's going to be a panel of, of youth that are in our industry. And they're going to talk about the highs and the lows. It gets in the bads, what they like about the industry, what they don't, what companies can do to keep them what they need. You know, I'll tell ya when I take a look back at when we started and as we started to grow the rules of regulations and stipulations and uniforms, and you had to do this, I had to do that. Oh yes. If we had those SLPs in place now, I don't know if we would survive because they need flexibility. Their needs are much different than Kelly. What do you, what do you think? What do they think about that? I think it's true. And I think, I always think it's interesting because we talk about use then. I mean, you hear the, hear the, the feedback from employers for sales, or, you know, it's still hard to get users engaged and it's hard to work with youth and they have so many expectations. And I kind of sit back and say, are they really wrong? Look at the way that we all worked. You know, it was a badge of honor. It is a badge of honor to work, you know, 50, 60 hours a week. And, you know, to do all the traveling and to not be home and not have that family experience or as much as what other people want and have. And so I kind of look at it and think, why would we, why are we so shocked by what people want when they've seen their own family? And especially if they had drivers in their family, or Lou did a lot of traveling in their families and they know that they weren't around, they don't want to necessarily have that for the wrong experiences. So I think that'll be really interesting to hear that good in the, in the, in the experiences, but also the challenges that they, that they face. And I think we, as an industry, have to step back and say, you know, is what they're asking for really that much of a stretch. Like, you know, they want a work life balance. They want to be able to be around the family. I dunno. I think that maybe they're onto something and maybe we're, we're just outdated ourselves. Well, I'd agree with you there. I was going to use a perfect example is myself. Oh, wow. This is scary. Anyway, I've got two kids. They're now, well grown. One of them has got a kid of her own. And, and it's interesting because I was driving at the time and I was running my trucking company from the steering wheel of my truck while my kids were babies, you know, and I miss that opportunity, but I didn't think nothing of it, because that was the lifestyle. That's how things were back then. So you're exactly right. You're seeing it now. And you're going, yeah, man. I wish we were thinking that back in our day, we would, I would have had more time with my kids. You know, I would have watched them grow up and seen those first steps and got those first words and got to take them, you know, hooked to the park and stuff like that. But Hey, dad was too busy. Dad come home one day out of two weeks and you know enough to get the laundry done, repack the bag and giddy up and go. So now I try to spend as much time as I can with my kids. Even though they're older, it's like, Hey, I'm explaining to them, I've lost so much time with you guys. I'm trying to make it up. And it's a shame because we didn't have to, we just had to change our mindset and the way we did things. And I think the industry can adapt and can bring and allow people the home time that they're looking for. There's no reason we can't. I think it's going to have to, it has to evolve or like a dinosaur it's going to die. Yeah. We either change or we're going to lose them. There are so many other sectors looking for people. People have so many choices, right. So we want to be competitive. We have to be open to something different, something that is not traditional. Yeah. Sorry, not traditional trucking stuff. Yeah. All right. Sorry, Kim Parlay on what Kelly Sam there. I mean, I, and I often say this with given the opportunity. You know, our competition is not within our industry, has all, you know what, that they're jumping over this company, that our competition is every other industry that has something better to offer our youth or our, you know, middle age, whatever you wanted to find, because people are, people are very into what their wants and needs are. And it's important that kudos to that. I share a story with you. I can remember, I don't know, 15 years ago, maybe it was, we had an associate meeting with all of our people. I was addressing our company and all of this stuff, our teammates, and they said, you know, effective immediately. There's no more dress code. My daughter, Jamie was sitting in the meeting. We had a, we had a pretty stringent dress code, dress code. And how many shirts mean badges in the office? Jeans were only worn on Fridays and we abolished it and we abolished it because we knew that that was going to help people. I mean, that may sound really weird for people. They want to be able to wear what they want to wear within reason. We put some stipulations in place, no holes in the jeans and you know, no low cut tops and all that sort of good stuff. It's amazing work. But my daughter, I can remember Jamie slamming her hand on the table. She said, I never thought I'd hear Kim Richardson say there'd be no dress code because dress is always important. It's a first of brushing. Exactly. Exactly. So, yeah. It's interesting because you have a moderator for one of the panels who is in my mind, an outside the box thinker, you know, evolution of transportation, Michael's elec of a Wellington motor freight is one of the few carriers in this industry that has made the move to an hourly or salary type pay a compensation package for drivers. And that's like, so many people are like, whoa, you can't do that. No, there's no way. But look, what it's done for him. His retention level is through the roof, you know, just phenomenal. Yeah. Zero, exactly. Zero loss drivers out of that. So I think that's, that's one mechanism of, of trying to retain it, recruit drivers. So people have to start thinking outside the box because I think, well, I've tried to remember. It was that I, Albert Einstein that said doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result, definition of insanity. So we gotta change what we're doing. We got you. Can't the only way you're going to get a different result is do something different. And, and, you know, they have their own network of, of recruiting and retention people, kids, his own, I'm not going to say he has, they have their own group and they meet regularly. They got that. They got that team chat thing going on on their phones. And they're always talking with each other and sharing ideas and that that's, that's exciting. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And it's, it's the way those young ins do things today. The rebel, our industry. It's a good thing. It's about time it's been disrupted. Yeah. Mike Zelle is going to be one of the other speakers there. Kelly, what else is Mike going to be addressing? They're going to be focusing that panel on recruitment strategies and best practices, and they could focus on some of the challenges, but I think they really want to focus on really what is working and what might be new for the people that are sitting there listening that they can take away and, you know, possibly look at implementing in their own organizations. And I think that's really important when we looked at and we continue to look at who's going to be sitting in those chairs is really making sure that there's going to be some value for people that are actually in the audience so that they'll be able to walk away with some really great takeaways. I think that that's, that's probably, what's exciting from my perspective, being able to actually see that. I know if I attend an event, I want to walk away with something tangible that I can say I got something out of the day and not just sitting there listening to, you know, listening to people talk, but to actually give me something of value. So I'm excited about that. I know we're going to have a great day. We're going to be able to showcase some great presenters at that event. I think I got a feeling that all of your speakers, the people who attend will be walking away with something actionable from all of them, not just in Zelikow is going to do a great job. I know I've heard them before. It just, it's just not going to be just him though. It's going to be Tova and that Richardson guy as well. And then you've got, and then you've got that straight shooter, Trevor bent. And he's not he's straight. I know that cat. He's a good guy. He knows his stuff. He been doing this a long time. Yeah, Trevor's fantastic. He's going to really bring together the re the retention side and talk about retention. Talk about the strengths of a, you know, retaining a good workforce and why that's so important, you know, today, because really we focus so much on recruiting. That retention is such a big piece of it. We can't afford to lose good people at the end of the day. That's just not an option for us. So really focusing on retention is going to push us over the line. I think, terms of the deliverables, You know, I see it so often, way too often. And most of my companies that they are way too worried about recruiting, and they're not worried enough about keeping those that are already there. It would be so much less expensive to keep those ones that are there, then letting them go. And it's trying to turn the wheel again. Kim's sorry, Kim. I can see the bubble above your head there. What you're saying is, is in my opinion, so true. You know, we, we spend anywhere from on the low side, six to 10 gay to hire a new employee into our industry. I'm not just going to say driver, train them. You know, one of the things that just grinds my gears is when I hear, you know, well, come on and you don't have a 90 day probational period, right? Those days are gone. You know, it's not a probate. It shouldn't be a probation period. It should be an introductory period. And the good companies who utilize those words properly and say, listen, we do have a 90 day introductory period. And if it's not going to work for you, if we're doing something that, that doesn't fit with you early, let us know. So we can try to fix it because we work really hard at bringing you on and we want you to stay. And then after that period of time, what do you do for me next? Like what's a one year plan. What can they expect to be educated on? What's the opportunities for growth, especially with today's youth, man, if we don't, you know who you don't keep them excited, they're gone. I worked with an operation here that put an awesome program in place with their new hires. And it didn't even matter what experience level you had. It was a new hire. You could have a guy be a guy with 10 years, 20 years experience, or a new guy right out of school in the mentoring program. But they had people on a team and they were part of the, kind of the onboarding team. Or you could say, and what they did is every week, somebody in that team reached out to that driver or that employee to go, how's it going? How are your thoughts? What's happening? How's it working out? Everything going well, is there anything we can do for you? Anything we could change anything we can help and for a week, for the first two months, okay. For 60 days every week. And then after that, it dropped off and went to every other week. And what was interesting was this team was smart enough to realize that when something happened, whether it be a violation, an incident lost time of some sort or whatever, whenever there was some type of little thing, they were quick to blame themselves, not the employee, because they said we just failed that person. Cause we didn't follow through. We didn't provide instruction clearly enough, or we didn't that person up for success. And that operation is one in a million. And I wish more people would get into that because what did it cost them to have these people that were already working in this organization to reach out to that driver or employee? What did it cost? Nothing in comparison to what it costs to recruit that driver. So, you know, we need to invest in keeping them Well, Employees or associates, heart just, just deal with their family. You know, when their birthdays are, you know, what sports are playing, you know? And then that's, that's where you want to focus because this, this industry is let's face. It there's good people in it. There's, there's some of the others too. But if we stay focused on the families and the culture, that's two really key ingredients. Yeah. I heard of a, a large company out of the U S and I can't remember the name, to be honest with you, that they would send the, the drivers wife in particular, the wife, they would send her flowers on her birthday and on their wedding anniversary. And particularly if the driver was not like not home, if he was off on the road, that they would send that as an apology, that they couldn't get that driver home for her birthday. So they'd send flowers. Interesting enough. They added one more touch to it. If he was going to be home, they would supply him with the flowers to give to his wife. And that was the key because they said, if you can get the wife to stay, she'll make the husband stay. That's awesome. I think that is great. Kelly. When is the NRR S out in the Atlantic provinces? The reception is the evening before may. So that's May 25th. And the actual conference itself is may 26, A big city of Truro Nova Scotia. And I say that because I've been there and it's an awesome, awesome. Yeah, no, it's, you know what, it's a great town and we're really pleased to be able to host it here. So I think we'll have a great event and lots of hospitality. So come to the east coast and get to experience. So what a, what an event is like here, I think that's awesome. Kim, last word. Well, Kelly's being very humble as always the hospitality that they provide at their events and just making you feel so much at home and comfortable. And again, a lot of people say it's east coast way, but I'll tell you no one knows. No one knows how to run an event. Make people feel better than Kelly and her team Russell, fortunate to be able to partner with that. We really are. That's the truth. Been blessed to go to the east coast many times. I love going to these coast. All right, thanks guys. I appreciate you coming on. And that's it for the trucking risk and insurance podcast for this week. I want to really think Kelly Henderson and Kim Richardson for joining us on the show. And I would encourage you if you can get out there on May 25th and 26th is the event, the NRR S the national recruiting retention. And suppose you come out in Truro, Nova Scotia. So join them. Kelly promises to take good care of you. Thanks everybody. And we'll see you next week.