12 Qualities of an Executive Chauffeur
Living and working as an executive Chauffeur over the years I have found that I have developed my set of rules or rather qualities that helps me make sure I enjoy my working day and get on well with all my clients, Making sure I provide excellent Chauffeur services in the areas of Glasgow, Edinburgh and all over Scotland.
The 12 qualities of a good Chauffeur
Being an excellent timekeeper requires excellent organisational skills and forward planning. This is not just a case of showing up on time; it is a case of being consistently reliable and always arriving early, fully prepared, no matter what.
Being an excellent people person with a good sociable nature is a great trait in a chauffeur, however, it is essential to learn the art of reading people and making sure that it is always the client who leads the conversation. Your client may not always want to chat with you so it is good practice to wait for the client to engage in a conversation with you, rather than the other way around. Be polite and courteous with your greetings and interactions, learn to read each client accurately and behave accordingly.
Absolute discretion and professionalism is crucial. Working near any client as a private member of staff will mean you gain insight into certain elements of their personal life. Trust is essential and discretion is therefore paramount.
Providing your clients with an excellent level of service requires a degree of intuition and the ability to think outside the box. Put yourself in your client’s shoes and try to prepare for anything. It is advisable to carry a fully stocked emergency kit in the vehicle with you. This kit will help you to deal with all those unexpected situations that can and will arise.
Frequently used items that could save the day on route to a business meeting or meal could include:
- Travel sewing kit
- Bleach pen – for removing stains
- Wet wipes & tissues
- Pens / stationary items
- First aid kit
Being immaculately turned out every time you show up for work is an essential part of being an excellent chauffeur. Vehicles should be well maintained and immaculate, both inside and out, this will require some experience in basic car maintenance and regular checks to ensure the car remains in good order.
Transporting your clients safely from A to B should always be your number one priority. Even if the client is late and, in a hurry, to get somewhere urgently, their safety should never be compromised.
Regardless of the situation, an experienced, professional chauffeur will remain cool, calm and collected. Being able to exude this quiet confidence in any given situation and keep your head will demonstrate to your client that you are in complete control which will help to ease any tension they are experiencing and make it easier for them to relax.
A good chauffeur will plan the forthcoming journey in detail, looking at possible pinch points and traffic jams. They will calculate how long the journey will take and allow a little extra for unforeseen problems.
Have a Plan B
When you’re planning your route, it’s always worth having a Plan B.
A Plan B works for everyday driving too: what would you do if the lorry in front of you shed its load? Or a tractor pulled out of that field? Or the dog on the pavement suddenly dashed out into the road? By processing this information and having a plan to deal with it, you will be able to avoid a significant number of otherwise potentially dangerous situations.
Chauffeurs will look much, much further ahead than most drivers, enabling them to spot problems well before everyone else. This means that they can change lanes in plenty of time, keeping up their average speed and avoiding the sort of last-minute lane changes that cause accidents and annoy other motorists. The key is to look as far ahead as you can, scanning back all the way to the car in front. This is a constant cycle – interspersed with frequent mirror and instrument checks – that becomes second nature very quickly.
The one quality that just about every passenger will notice is when he or she is being driven by a top-flight chauffeur, how smooth the journey is. This is partly a function of the driver looking so far ahead and being able to avoid last-second emergency avoidance but also a reflection of their driving technique. The best chauffeurs will ease on and off the throttle and steer the car into bends with small, gentle movements of the steering wheel to avoid upsetting the car’s composure. The very best will also feather the brakes as they come to a halt, releasing the pressure as the car finally stops.
Finally, chauffeurs are less prone to being distracted. If you refuse to get drawn into others’ bad driving, for example, you will stay stress-free and calm. When a chauffeur is cut-up by a sales executive in their sales car he or she will stay calm and focus on the job in hand, which is getting their client to the destination as quietly and unobtrusively as they can. They certainly wouldn’t gesticulate and use good Anglo-Saxon language to critique the other driver’s incompetence.
I have been an executive chauffeur in and around Glasgow and Edinburgh for over twenty years.