Have you taken the time to really consider what driving well means? I think it is a hugely complex and interesting subject to look at in depth. Driving well is easy but driving well all the time is probably impossible.
We could use the driving test as an example. Passing the driving test means we have achieved the ‘driving well’ standard. Yes, I can hear the arguments that it is a minimum standard, however, it is a standard that anyone who requires a driving licence should meet.
The reality is that it must be easy to meet that standard because the vast majority of people who set out to learn to drive do so. Here though is the BUT - how come so many are not ready to deal with the real world? I think this is the most difficult aspect because while they’re training we are with them and let’s face it a lot of them need us with them. We are teaching them to drive and yet our very presence makes it more difficult for the learner to take control and make those decisions for themselves. I would include here those, who are already qualified, as they often think they need to drive like a learner when being assessed for a company vehicle.
What can we do to overcome this problem? I know some will say, ‘It’s not my problem, I have done my job’ but have you? It all depends on how you look at your job. If you teach to pass a test then you probably have but then that is not really a very high standard of expertise - as we all know, anyone can teach to pass a test.
So creating an atmosphere where people can be themselves; experiment without fear of being judged; learn in an environment that allows true reflection, is not easy. Helping the driver/learner to self-evaluate so that they understand what they have done; how they are progressing; and what they still need to learn, may be a skill that some doubt it is necessary to develop. However, I believe it is crucial and the result is safe and responsible drivers, who are aware of their own limitations and have the ability to think through their decision-making or to go back and admit their mistakes and discover for themselves ways to improve.
We know that driving well is easy but driving consistently well is extremely difficult because life gets in the way. Helping new drivers develop strategies to cope is essential to being a great ADI. It also gives you a unique selling point in a highly competitive market and puts you at the top of your profession with far greater earning potential and opportunity.