Thinking about the Dispatchers I've worked with over the years. Dispatching is a very difficult job,
usually for low pay, and Dispatchers sometimes feel they are neglected, picked on, underappreciated,
etc. When I managed a tow company with approximately 20 drivers, one of my training subjects for the
drivers was to tell them to be nice to Dispatchers. This might not be a well-known piece of data, but
Dispatchers have favorites. There are drivers they like, and drivers they don't like. This might not be
fair. Their reasons for liking or not liking a driver might seem irrational. But it's true, so my advice to
drivers was always this: Be one of the favorites.

1. Say "please," "thank you," and "you're welcome" a lot.
2. Be patient. Dispatchers usually have multiple phone lines to manage, in addition to multiple drivers in
trucks. And then the Boss has them doing some paper-shuffling project on top of all that.
3. Offer to give them a break. If you're hanging around bothering them, offer to sit in the hot seat for
them. They’ve probably had to go the bathroom for about 2 hours but can't get away. You can handle
things for 2 or 3 minutes (we hope).
4. Pick up some lunch or a cup of coffee for them.
5. Gifts never hurt. A small token of appreciation with a card will go a long way.

I can't help, however, sharing some humorous stories about Dispatchers. I worked with one Dispatcher
who had a reputation of not always putting forth a great effort. I wouldn't say she was lazy, but she
if she could find a way to do something with less work, she would. Ironically, that takes a lot of work
sometimes. Our boss bought some paint and asked her to paint the inside of our construction trailer
office. There was a calendar of some sort hanging on the wall, and she painted AROUND the calendar.

One Dispatcher I worked with early in my career was a retired mechanic who had injured his spine on
the job, so he couldn't turn a wrench anymore. He wasn't particularly suited to office work, but he tried
hard. One bad habit he had was leaving the daily till sheet, with all of the cash for the day, sitting on
top of the safe. He would set it there a few minutes before the end of his shift, but he didn't want to
drop it until the office was closed, in case he needed to add to it at the last minute. I worked swing shift,
so about once a month I would find the till on the safe and drop it in. One time I decided to teach him
a lesson, so instead of dropping it in the safe, I locked it in my locker. It was a Friday night, and I went
out of town for the weekend, and I forgot about it. When I came in Monday afternoon, he looked like
someone had shot his dog. There was something just short of a congressional inquiry going on. He was
almost relieved enough when I gave it to him to not try to hurt me. But, like I said, he had spine trouble,
so there was no danger of him catching me.

Have a safe and profitable week.

Nick Kemper

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