Trucking Safety “D” is for Don’t Hire This Driver
Trucking companies that use behavioral assessments to screen driver applicants have cut their accident rates and costs substantially, sometimes by half or more. Research and experience prove this to be true.
A study conducted by Behavioral-Values Research Associates in 1993 showed that behavioral style is a better determiner of safe driving practices than how much safety training a driver has had.
A behavioral assessment measures normal behavior in two areas: D (Dominant) and C (Cautious, Compliant to Standards).
The D factor determines how drivers tend to handle problems and challenges, the I factor looks at their interactions and influence with others, the S at how they respond to the pace of the environment, and the C at how they respond to rules and regulations set by others.
A DISC behavioral assessment shows how the applicant ranks in each of the four factors from 0% to 100%. Fifty percent is the midline; above this the person is said to be high in the factor, below 50% – low. The higher or lower the ranking, the more intense the behavior will be. In this article, we’ll look at the highs and lows of the D factor.
Research shows the safest drivers are low in the D factor. Here’s the reason why.
Drivers who score highest in the Dominant factor have a Core D style. They are bold, daring, results oriented, argumentative, and quick to challenge. They tend to be impatient. A slow-moving vehicle may cause them to take risks that can cause an accident.
This actually happened to one of my cousins. She was driving on an Interstate highway, passing a car in the left lane. A big truck came up behind her, so close it unnerved her. She sped up to pass the car and said the trucker got off on the road shoulder to pass her before she was able to safely pull in front of the car she was passing.
A Low D driver wouldn’t do this. A person low in the D factor tends to be cautious, agreeable, cooperative, humble, and mild mannered.
The Core D driver’s motto is “My way or the highway,” or even “My way on the highway.” This driver’s attitude is “Get outta my way, I’m king of the road.” The low D driver believes “We can all share the highway and get there safely.”
In a nutshell, the lower the D factor, the safer the driver.
People with Core D behavioral styles make excellent CEO s, entrepreneurs, and drill sergeants.
They don’t belong behind the wheel of your trucks.
Trucking Safety: “C” Is for the Cautious Driver
If you’re looking for drivers who are least likely to cause accidents, those with a Core C behavioral style are the ones you want to hire and retain. Caution is not only their middle name; it’s their first name.
Safety research shows drivers’ natural behaviors and attitudes are a greater predictor of their chances of causing accidents than their level of safety training. (Source: Behavioral-Values Research Associates, 1993) It makes sense. If a person’s main concern is safety, he or she will behave in a much more careful manner behind the wheel than someone whose first concern is, say, being in charge or interacting with other people.
Understanding behavioral patterns and values will tell you which drivers to hire if safety is your top concern. A behavioral assessment measures normal behavior in four areas: D (Dominant), I (Influencing), S (Steadiness), and C (Cautious, Compliant to Standards).
The D factor determines how drivers tend to handle problems and challenges, the I factor looks at their interactions and influence with others, the S at how they respond to the pace of the environment, and the C at how they respond to rules and regulations set by company and federal regulations.
A DISC behavioral assessment shows how the applicant ranks in each of the four factors from 0% to 100%. Fifty percent is the mid line; above this the person is said to be high in the factor, below 50% – low. The higher or lower the ranking, the more intense the behavior will be. In this article, we’ll look at the highs and lows of the C factor.
Research shows the safest drivers are high in the C factor. Here’s the reason why.
Drivers who score highest in the Cautious/Compliant behavioral factor are careful, cautious, detail oriented, and accurate. They follow rules to the letter. They are low risk takers and dislike making mistakes. In fact, the fear of making mistakes is one of their biggest stress factors.
Drivers low in the C factor are the opposite. They are high risk takers and tend to be careless, especially with details; they are likely to break rules and ask forgiveness, whereas High C drivers ask permission before acting or making decisions. Low C drivers can be arbitrary and hard to manage.
Your ideal driver has this behavioral profile: High in the S (Steadiness) and C (Cautious) factors, and low in the D (Dominant) and I (Influencing) styles. To see a sample of the ideal driver’s profile, click here. (If that doesn’t work, contact us and we’ll email you a sample report.)
Research and experience prove trucking companies that use behavioral assessments to pre-screen driver applicants and hire only those who fit the safe driver profile have reduced accidents, costs, workers’ comp claims, and turnover.
Most importantly, they have saved lives.