There are many misconceptions about what a career in transportation entails, especially amongst today’s youth and young adults. Tackling these misconceptions is a priority for The Musket Transport Ltd. so that students can make informed career choices. Doing so is particularly important because of the growing demand for new drivers as seasoned drivers from the Baby Boomer generation approach retirement.
A career in transportation has innumerable benefits. At The Musket Transport Ltd, some of the benefits include competitive rates and benefits, flexible scheduling, work-life balance, growth opportunities, continuing education, a referral bonus program. Other advantages of a career behind the wheel that drivers often cite include independence, the opportunity to visit new places and meet new people, and the ability to utilize skills, tools and other resources to solve problems and navigate difficult situations. The best way for students considering their career options to determine if a career in transportation is right for them is to speak to people working in the field and see them in action.
Motivated to promote opportunities for experiential learning, Musket Transport participated in the External Job Shadow Program at the University of Toronto – Mississauga Campus (UTM). On October 18th and 19th, Tae Ho Lee shadowed Fleet Resources Manager, Anthony Dyal, for a 2.5 office days at the Cawthra location. With over 20 years of experience in the industry, Anthony had an abundance of experience and insights to share with Tae Ho.
An international student majoring in Linguistics with a minor in Psychology, Tae Ho had limited work experience. He applied for the Job Shadow program to gain exposure to different industries and careers. Tae Ho was interested in learning about the different responsibilities and obstacles involved in running an established business and gaining insight into entrepreneurship. He was attracted to Musket because of its reputation as a prominent, well-regarded company in the Mississauga area. While he didn’t have previous experience in the transportation industry, Tae Ho was interested in learning more. He always felt trucking was “cool”, but was apprehensive about pursuing a career as a driver because of concerns about the dangers of commercial driving.
In his two-day visit, Tae Ho visited three facilities and had the opportunity to interact with various Musket employees in different roles, from students and drivers to front-line management and executives. He was encouraged to observe and ask questions.
“I joined the Job Shadowing program because it was a great opportunity for students to gain unique insight into a career path in a safe, supportive environment and build a mentor-mentee relationship with a professional at the host company,” said Tae Ho.
In just two days, Tae was able to learn from diverse experiences. As a result, he had an opportunity to consider various challenges management face, from addressing industry stereotypes and employee concerns to implementing strategies for effective advertisement and project expansion. He was even able to get behind the wheel of a truck and feel the massive power feel of the engine!
Tae Ho enjoyed Musket Transport’s supportive work culture and was impressed by the company’s size. He was surprised by how fast-paced and demanding the work environment was. Tae Ho observed how his mentor Anthony had to navigate a myriad of challenges quickly and efficiently. “I was impressed by how well Anthony dealt with them and learned that having systems in place for departments to communicate with each other is key to success,” said Tae Ho.
One memorable experience Tae Ho had was attending a business meeting with a salesperson from Michelin Tires discussing a future tire purchase. He found it insightful that rather than looking for the least expensive deal, Musket Transport was prepared to spend more money into purchasing higher quality tires that would aid in accident prevention, serving them better in the long run. Tae Ho was impressed by Musket’s investment in updated, high quality equipment as well as its software system. He walked away with a greater appreciation of the powerful role technology plays in the evolution of the industry and the importance of constantly adapting to integrate innovations to stay competitive.
Tae Ho also saw the importance of developing other basic skillsets such as clear communication, document preparation, and presentation skills to succeed in a workplace environment. He felt he had better insight into what companies expect of their employees and was able to practice his job interview and networking skills.
Reflecting on his visit with Musket, Tae Ho explained that “the hands on experience I gained in this short time was invaluable. I wish the program was longer!”
The Musket Transport Ltd. Looks forward to participating in the UTM program again in order to give other students advice, mentorship and a first-hand look at a career in transportation so they can determine if it’s the right path for them.
Click here for more information on the UTM Shadow Program.