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Improve Time Management with These Four Tips for Truckstop Operators

Posted in: Truckstop Business, The NATSO Show, Leadership & Strategy


For two and a half days, the industry gathers to find knowledge, solutions and connections at The NATSO Show. Just like The NATSO Show, The NATSO Show Magazine is your source for improving your travel plaza business operations. Unlike The NATSO Show it is year-round. 

Improve Time Management with These Four Tips for Truckstop Operators

Not only do truckstop and travel plaza owners and managers know the nuts and bolts of their operations, they know how they want things to be done, which is why they often end up doing things themselves rather than delegating responsibilities.

During The NATSO Show 2015, small retail business expert Tom Shay told attendees that writing down tasks along with who should take care of them can help owners and managers better manage their time while also giving their employees greater ownership of their work.

Make a List: Shay said, “What do you need to do on a daily, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, annual basis? What is necessary for a profitable truckstop operation? What does an owner need to do? What should a subordinate be doing?” 

He suggested owners write down the issues they handle and decide versus those that should be handled by the subordinate. They can then use that list to guide how they delegate to and train staff. 

Give Managers Authority: Shay urged owners to give their managers the power to make decisions when they are working. “In so many cases the owner makes the decision when the owner is in the business. The manager makes the decision when the owner is gone. That is not how it should be. The managers should make the decisions every time they are in the business,” he said. 

Encourage Employees to Problem Solve: To help get employees even more engaged in the business, Shay  suggests operators ask for their feedback. “I had a sign on my door that said, ‘When you bring a problem to my attention, are you bringing a solution with you? Or, are you still a part of the problem?’”

Communicate Regularly: He also recommended holding regular, one-hour staff meetings bi-weekly and quick staff meetings before the start of each shift. “Utilize carrots to solve problems and drive the business,” Shay said. 

/// Tom Shay will be back again during The NATSO Show with more business expertise. To read about his session and other ahead-of-the-curve experts planned for The NATSO Show 2016, visit The NATSO Show website here.

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About the Author

Amy Toner

Amy Toner

Toner markets NATSO products, services and meetings. She is the content editor of NATSO's core websites, Stop Watch magazine and Highway Business Matters biweekly articles. In addition, she provides creative services across all departments. Toner joined NATSO in 2006. Prior to joining the association, she served as director of membership services at an association for ambulatory surgery centers. Toner lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and son.

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