What’s in a game tape? Ask basketball legend Kobe Bryant and he’ll say, “a lot.” Even the best of the best makes mistakes. It’s how you react to them that makes all the difference.
In an interview with Lewis Howes of The School of Greatness, Bryant talked about the pain, and the value, of studying losing performances to drive improvement. “Nothing is ever perfect,” Bryant said. “But the challenge is to try to get them as perfect as they can be. What can you do? It’s in your control. So control what you can.”
The same could be said for commercial driving. There are several factors a driver can’t control: weather, traffic conditions, other drivers’ moods. But drivers can control many other factors on the way to improving fleet safety.
Here, we draw out Kobe’s most compelling statements from the video and apply his insights to the world of commercial driving. Studying video clips really can create a winner, whether you make your living on the court, or on the road.
Kobe’s Words of Wisdom: “You have to do the hard stuff and watch that game, and study that game, to not make those mistakes over and over again.”
What It Means for Commercial Drivers: As human beings, we don’t like making mistakes. And once we’ve made a mistake, we certainly don’t like being confronted with it on video. But as hard as it is to accept our mistakes, it’s important that we do. Sometimes our egos have to be bruised so learning can take place. Just as Kobe looks to perfect his shot through watching game film, drivers can improve driving safety by watching video clips of their performance, captured by the Lytx Driver Safety Program.
When commercial drivers study video clips of their performance and talk it through with a driving coach, they give themselves a good chance to improve driving safety the next time around. As Kobe says, ‘You have to do the hard stuff’ so it’s easier to get it right in the future. Over the long term, as drivers “get it right” and improve driving safety more and more, it can bolster their confidence, professionalism and careers.
Kobe’s Words of Wisdom: “You look at it and you say, ‘Oh, there’s the mismatch. There’s the gap.’ And it (stinks). But you don’t want to have that feeling again, do you? So you have to really study it and face it. Not to say you’ll win the next time, but at least you’ll give yourself a better chance.”
What It Means for Commercial Drivers: For those who make their living on the road, the “mismatch” could mean jockeying for space with another driver while merging; talking on a handheld cellphone at the wheel; or simply battling a sudden lack of awareness. All of these behaviors, however, put the driver and surrounding vehicles at risk, whether they lead to a collision or not.
The good news is, in such distracted moments, there’s an opportunity for growth. For commercial fleets, that’s the beauty of video; it reveals that these moments even exist—and it puts organizations in position to actually improve driving safety. That’s powerful.
Video clips that capture a driver’s mental lapse or fleeting error can feel like tough pills to swallow while they’re going down. But in the space where uncomfortable moments occur, so does learning.
Kobe’s Words of Wisdom: “A lot of times the game starts moving really fast. But if you train yourself to watch hours and hours of film, the game’s not moving that fast, and you can recognize who’s doing what and why.”
What It Means for Commercial Drivers: If things move quickly on the court, they move even faster on the road (up to 65 mph faster). That’s a lot coming at commercial drivers all at once. With an onslaught of activity on the road, it’s all too easy for drivers to get distracted by people, vehicles, objects and animals in their line of sight.
That’s why taking the time to study videos of unsafe driving behavior can be such a game changer. In analyzing video clips captured by the DriveCam® Event Recorder, for example, the world of commercial driving slows down to a literal “freeze frame,” highlighting for drivers the unsafe habits they may have practiced without even realizing it. Once they understand the potential consequences of an unsafe habit, they can bring a renewed awareness to the job that may have been dulled from years of experience.