Earning your commercial driver’s license (CDL) is the first step to a rewarding trucking career. In most cases, it’s best to get your training at a truck driving school. To get the most out of your CDL driver training, it’s important to have the right mindset.
Here are some tips:
1. Research the Industry Before You Start
Before you attend CDL school, read about the trucking industry. This helps you make sure that you are fully committed to this career path. There are many benefits, such as high pay and the opportunity to see the country, but you should consider every aspect of trucking and be prepared for the unique lifestyle.
Researching before you start CDL classes also helps you figure out what topics you may need more help understanding. Read the New Mexico CDL manual and keep track of any questions that come up. As you go over these topics again in school, you’ll be prepared to retain more of the material.
2. Stay Positive
During your CDL driver training, you’ll be learning a lot of new skills. You’ll be better at some than others and it’s easy to get overwhelmed or frustrated. However, staying positive can help you have the best possible experience. Remind yourself of why you are interested in a trucking career and focus on working toward your goals.
3. Ask Questions
There will be a lot of information to take in during your training. To help you understand everything your instructor covers, ask questions when you need to. Don’t feel self-conscious. Chances are other students will be wondering the same thing, and questions give everyone the opportunity to learn more about the material.
4. Practice, Practice, Practice
Your instructors will help you prepare for your CDL test, but you should also study on your own or with classmates. The skills on the driving test will require instructor supervision, but you can practice pre-trip inspections and study for the written tests without this. Find a study method that works for you and practice as much as you can.
5. Observe While Other Students Drive
In most cases, you will spend a portion of your time driving during hands-on training, and you will spend the rest of the time watching while other students drive. Instead of checking out, pay attention to what your classmates are doing. If they make mistakes, make a mental note of what you can do to avoid the same issues. If they are doing especially well, consider what you can learn from their technique. This helps you make the best use of your time.
Bonus Tip: Choose A High-Quality Trucking School
The above tips focus on what you can do to improve your experience, but this will also depend on the quality of the program you attend. At Phoenix Truck Driving School, our instructors have real-world experience and work hard to help you succeed. We also have a job placement assistance team and many of our students have offers before graduation. We can get you on the road and earning in as little as four weeks.