Small Fleets – Big Challenges

Encouraging Ownership Among Employees

Managers of small fleets need to encourage greater ownership of operations among team members.

January 23, 2014

Typically, a small fleet will have fewer people performing more duties, and that requires a staff that understands the magnitude of their responsibilities.

Tags: Leadership, Public Safety Vehicles, Employee Morale, Small Fleets

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Thursday, January 23, 2014 12:00 AM | » Comments(1)

"Making" it Green

July 30, 2013

When most people think of the word green in relationship to fleet management they think less of the color and more of the environmental concept. It’s hard to put a finger on the exact point in time when the definition of green changed, but change it did, and with that change came a new battle flag for environmental stewardship.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Tuesday, July 30, 2013 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Get Out In Front

April 22, 2013

Image matters. Of course we can find instances where function over form seems more prudent but over all a lot more folks will see a piece of equipment than will ever actually use it.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Monday, April 22, 2013 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

If You Only Get One Nice Thing-Make it Your Software

February 6, 2013

If you are reading this blog chances are you have been to enough fleet manager training seminars to be familiar with the anecdotal instructions for how to eat an elephant…One bite at a time…Right?

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Wednesday, February 6, 2013 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Kind of a Drag

December 18, 2012

Look among the most important insights a fleet manager must have for success and you will find a keen awareness of the difference between the goals of a customer and that of leaderships. Fleet managers are in a constant state of unsteadiness as they endeavor to walk the tightrope of production and expense.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Tuesday, December 18, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

The ins-and-outs of Outsourcing

November 9, 2012

Productivity has been defined as the ratio between opportunity and accomplishment. Most if not all municipal garages suffer from a poor public image, the conventional wisdom is that a private service vendor can outperform the slow wheels of progress in a government facility. In an effort to validate this facility’s competiveness in the market a fully burdened labor rate was established.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Friday, November 9, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

The ins-and-outs of Outsourcing

November 9, 2012

Productivity has been defined as the ratio between opportunity and accomplishment. Most if not all municipal garages suffer from a poor public image, the conventional wisdom is that a private service vendor can outperform the slow wheels of progress in a government facility. In an effort to validate this facility’s competiveness in the market a fully burdened labor rate was established.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Friday, November 9, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

The ins-and-outs of Outsourcing

November 9, 2012

Productivity has been defined as the ratio between opportunity and accomplishment. Most if not all municipal garages suffer from a poor public image, the conventional wisdom is that a private service vendor can outperform the slow wheels of progress in a government facility. In an effort to validate this facility’s competiveness in the market a fully burdened labor rate was established.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Friday, November 9, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Utilization in a Small Fleet

September 19, 2012

Take a look at your Utilization through a set of fresh eyes by simply asking yourself the question; “Is the asset working for you of against you?”

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Wednesday, September 19, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Same Stick New Carrot

September 19, 2012

It is easy for a fleet manager to identify with the image of a donkey with a carrot dangled in front of him while a rider in his cart beats him with a stick. It is said that this “motivational image” is meant to keep us in a perpetual state of motion.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Wednesday, September 19, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Customer Service

July 6, 2012

It is a long held proverb in the public sector that “’the number of philosophies on government is greater than to the number of philosophers on government.” This being said, it is especially natural for me to apply the word customer when describing relationship the residents of Jonesborough have with the town government. The Town of Jonesborough is expected to meet certain obligations in return for taxes paid.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Friday, July 6, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Replacement Concepts

May 10, 2012

Equipment replacement is expensive…Enough said?… Not so fast. Equipment replacement can be an enormous financial benefit when done correctly. The concept of equipment replacement shares equivalence between productivity and cost. It is very easy to imagine a piece of equipment costing too much to be worth purchasing.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Thursday, May 10, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

De Facto Specification

May 4, 2012

Small fleets have a dilemma when it comes to life cycling, a small geographic area will traditionally allow for a longer lifecycle in years but the technological life of an asset is getting shorter and shorter.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Friday, May 4, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Be Convinced… Be Convincing

April 24, 2012

In the day to day operation on a fleet a fleet manager is often asked to lend their “expert” opinion to a situation. In some cases a fleet manager may not have any more knowledge that the next guy about the best practice for the given circumstance.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Tuesday, April 24, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

PM = Preemptive Model

February 14, 2012

I would like to introduce a new PM acronym to fleet management; behold, the Preemptive Model. One may think a small fleet has unlimited opportunities to manage each piece of equipment in an individual manner and for the most part they would be right, but there is a fundamental problem with the micromanagement of equipment in a small fleet.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Tuesday, February 14, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Answer the Small Questions

January 17, 2012

It is easy for a fleet manager of any size organization to get caught up in the details of running a fleet. There are so many details that must be tended to on an hourly basis it may seem like we provide more of a process than a product. While it is always important to keep your process working correctly we must be sure that the process reaches a desired end.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Tuesday, January 17, 2012 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Find a Way to Say Yes

December 7, 2011

In the world of all that is consecrated in fleet management … (of course I mean the self help books and endless death by power point management seminars) we are taught to be the team leader, promote productivity and educate our departments on all the best practices.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Wednesday, December 7, 2011 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

The Strangely Bizzare World of Fleet Management

October 20, 2011

Who would have thought that one day a fleet manager would be asked to search for “used” sanitation equipment.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Thursday, October 20, 2011 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Subvert the Dominant Paradigm

September 28, 2011

In the straight laced world of government work it is not very often government fleets are thought of as innovators or trend setters. This lethargic city garage mentality must be broken at the back, its head severed and body burned to ashes and scattered to the four winds so that no trace of complacency remains.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Wednesday, September 28, 2011 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

Professional Fleet Management in a Small Fleet

September 12, 2011

One of the biggest challenges in a small fleet is credibility. Every one is a mechanic right??? Although it is likely true that most people in your organization have managed a few vehicles or at least some of their own vehicles. The natural trend for the department heads is to treat a piece of equipment like it was their own.

Author: Gary Lykins | Posted @ Monday, September 12, 2011 12:00 AM | » Comments(0)

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Author Bio

Gary Lykins

Fleet Manager

Gary Lykins serves as the fleet manager, shop supervisor, and lead mechanic for the Town of Jonesborough. Although he has 20 years of experience in various roles in the automotive and equipment industry, his tenure with the Town of Jonesborough has been the most challenging and fulfilling position of his career.

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