You may have heard the expression, ‘when pigs fly’? It’s an expression used when referencing something that seems impossible. An example might be: Two people are having a conversation, one says to the other “I am going to win the million dollar lottery tomorrow night” and the other person says “Sure, you will win the lottery ‘when pigs fly’”.  Of course, people do win lotteries, however the chances are slim but if you don’t buy a ticket you don’t win.

Recently, I was asked to attend a meeting on the east coast in Truro, Nova Scotia by a good friend and industry colleague of twenty plus years,  Kelly Henderson. Kelly heads up the Trucking Human Resource Sector Council (THRSC). She was somewhat secretive as to why she was bringing some industry people together. I knew that it was industry related and it would be two days. I, like most in the industry who have meet or worked with Kelly have a tremendous amount of respect her. She has been in the industry for many years and knows our sector (training and education) of the industry as well as or better than most. Kelly is innovative, a leader and brings good value to the industry with all she does. She truly has a passion for making our industry and the people in it better. I knew she would not waste my time and I would be part of something of value and reflecting on my drive back to the Halifax airport I was so appreciative of the invite Kelly had extended to me.

It’s a fact that our industry will only be as good as the people in it. Education, of oneself and learning everyday is important. What I learned the first morning is that Kelly had brought the people around the table together to be part of a two day leadership program. We would listen and learn from a professional business/life coach, but not just any coach. What made this new business coach interesting and effective was that she was already part of the trucking industry. Her name is Denise Beaupre, COO of Auction Transport.  Denise is someone who knows our industry and how it functions and has the stories and the experience to prove it. She spoke our language. She belongs to a family business which involves moving vehicles. This is a tough sector with different expectations for their drivers (mobile profit center operators) and very specialized. It didn’t take me long to figure out that she gets it. She knows the industry, she knows her numbers, she knows the struggles but most importantly she knows the people. She got my attention early.

Now for some having a business or personal coach can be viewed as time consuming or even a waste of time. This is not true, maybe just a case of ‘don’t knock it, until you try it’. Many years ago I hired a business coach. For nearly two years I was the benefactor of some of the best advice and coaching I have ever received professionally and personally. I am a better person today because of that investment of time and money. Truly it has been one the best returns on an investment I have ever made. I was already a believer of the concept but for some around the table they would need convincing and proof and by the end of the two days, Denise had proven the concept and all were believers in the process and the benefits.

If you are going to be a good leader, you need to be inspired, you need to be an enlightened thinker more importantly you need to convince those around the importance of being inspired and being enlightened.

Most of us want to earn more money, have more fun and enjoy what we are doing. That won’t happen by accident. There needs to be a plan, there needs to be goals and they need to be tied to timelines. As Denise explained there are three types of goals. She calls them A, B and C goals. An A goal is one that is very attainable, a B goal is within sight and will need more effort and planning and a C goal may seem like a ‘when pigs fly’ type of goal. In your mind (and others) it will just never happen.  Don’t worry about the others because there not in charge of your goals, you are.

As company leaders what are your goals for the next 3 years? How about the next year or 6 months? 90 days? How are you going to achieve those goals? How about personally?

As Denise explained to those around the table, it’s all about your thoughts, your actions, your results and she had the proof and numbers to back it up with her own company to show that it can be done.

A business coach, from my perspective, needs to be real, motivational, passionate, confident and most importantly they need to know what they are talking about. For us around the table it was an added bonus that Denise was from our industry.

Leadership and education are very important. Take some time to consider it, look into it and if you want to learn more about my experience or my ‘when pigs fly goal’ give me a call I would be happy to share it with you.

Speaking of education, the Private Motor Truck Council of Canada (PMTC) Driven to Lead Program being hosted by PMTC Young Leaders Group is just around the corner and is hosted by Eagles Flight in Guelph Ontario. The four-part certified course will take you through hands on and impactful exercises focusing on topics like culture, teamwork, accountability and strategy. This program is intended for upcoming leaders who are looking to advance and develop their personal and professional skills. For all the decision makers out there, this program is very reasonably priced and if you’re worried about educating your young leaders and then leaving your company after you have invested in them just think about not educating and making not making them better and they decide to stay at your company.

August 15th is the deadline for registration and you can reach them by email at info@pmtc.ca or call them at 905 827 0587.

I hope you have had a terrific summer so far and be sure to take some time to be with those that mean the most to you.

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