5 tips for female truck drivers: how to know your way in a man’s world.
Even though people don’t seem to agree on why women are underrepresented in most fields, it is a fact. The logistics industry is no different. Only 23% of workers in transport and logistics in Europe and Central Asia are women being employed mostly at some low-paying jobs. Recently, companies are trying to make a difference and we can see more women working as truck drivers, for example. Here are some tips on how to manage the job in a male-dominated world.
1 .Find a company that shares your values
Nowadays, many companies hire female truck drivers. But only a few of them do a good job of supporting them. If the company doesn’t share your values, they would probably hardly promote a woman over a man. To value hard work and understand the challenges women face in a workplace, don’t exclude each other.
2. Don’t settle for less
Like in every other job, you should be paid adequately for your performance. The gender pay gap is still a huge problem in today’s society. In the U.S., women earn only 82 cents for every dollar earned by men. This is also a reason why logistics is few in women. Therefore, you should be sure that the wage you are offered would be the same as an equally experienced and educated man applying for the same position.
3. Always stay safe
Because truck driving is a male-dominated field, you will probably mostly encounter male drivers on the road. Unfortunately, sometimes women don’t feel comfortable staying around groups of men based on possible experiences of assaults or harassment in the workplace. Even though it’s not a solution to the issue that troubles our society, by avoiding shady-looking rest areas with no people around, female drivers can prevent dangerous situations from happening.
4. Stay in touch with other female drivers
If you need to get an idea of what it’s like to work as a female truck driver before you take the job, don’t hesitate to reach out to some experienced women. It will give you a unique point of view on the challenges they have been facing and how they’ve handled them.
Or, if you are already in the business, check out if there are any associations or groups for women in trucking. By surrounding yourself with other successful women in the field, you can get interesting tips based on the experiences of others.
5. Be ready for anything
While on the road, basically, anything can happen. To feel the safest and most comfortable, you should pre-plan your drive carefully. If you already know your scheduled road, loadings, and unloadings, map out potential stops. It is essential to keep in mind that you need to take enough bathroom breaks, rest when it’s necessary, and eat and drink properly.
Always have enough drinkable water packed, but also some for a quick refreshment or for brushing your teeth. And little snacks would also come in handy while waiting in huge traffic jams, trust me. Don’t forget to have enough supplies for proper hygiene and a comfortable clean feeling.
Working in a male-dominated industry can be quite challenging, but the conditions seemed to have improved recently. Companies didn’t use to understand the issues women face on a daily basis. But thanks to the tireless work of unions, initiatives, and many exceptional women, that have broken the glass ceilings, work rights are, slowly but surely, being reformed.