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Editor’s Perspective Archive



When Fleet Management Becomes Change Management

Whether electrifying your fleet, rolling out new software or restructuring your department, you’ll encounter resistance from within and outside your team. So, how do you win over those people to make the transition as smooth as possible? Put these six change management principles into practice. 1. Clearly communicate the vision, rationale and benefits of the […]

Addressing the Elephant in the Room: Are Your Electrification Targets Realistic?

The latest headlines signal that the electric vehicle market is tapping the brakes, with the road ahead becoming increasingly uncertain. How will this trend impact your company’s ability to hit its zero-emission targets? The odds are strong that you will need to convince senior management to adjust their timeline and expectations. But how do you […]

In Many Ways, Fleet Management is Sales

In this issue’s “Women in Utility Fleet” feature, I speak with Lissa Brady, the fleet asset manager at San Diego Gas & Electric and a director on the EUFMC board. We talked about her nontraditional path to fleet management, with more than two decades in various sales roles. She said her predecessor at SDG&E also […]

Reflection and Respect

| Sean M. Lyden |
This year marks my 10th anniversary with Utility Fleet Professional and eight years as its editor. Reflecting on my time at UFP, I’m struck by the level of expertise you need to succeed in the utility sector compared to fleets in other industries. Before joining UFP, I wrote about a wide range of fleets, from […]

7 Ways Fleet Professionals Can Use ChatGPT to Boost Productivity

Most headlines about artificial intelligence sound the alarm about how AI will disrupt industries and take away jobs. But what’s the reality? What impact could AI have on fleet management? Will it put you out of a job? Or will it make your job easier and more productive? If OpenAI’s ChatGPT (https://openai.com/chatgpt) is any indication, […]

EUFMC Celebrates 70 Years: Embracing Change and Shaping the Future of Fleet

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Electric Utility Fleet Managers Conference, which will feature a powerful lineup of events and speakers in Williamsburg, Virginia, from June 4-7. Since its inception in 1953, the conference has continuously evolved to address the most pressing challenges for utility fleet professionals. And that’s what makes the networking […]

Despite the Momentum for Electric Vehicles, the Future is Still Uncertain

Many in the media, myself included, have touted the inevitability of electric vehicles. And for good reason. In unison, the automakers, the federal government, several state governments and the utility industry have declared 2035 the year the entire U.S. will flip the switch to all-electric transportation. The thinking is that federal regulations have worked to […]

3 Books for Building the Right Habits for Growth in 2023 and Beyond

If you’re reading UFP, the odds are you’re growth-minded and have specific career goals you’d like to achieve in 2023. But will you follow through? After all, most of us abandon our New Year’s resolutions by February. So, how can you defy the odds and maintain the discipline you need to keep working toward your […]

Knowing When Not to Press ‘Send’

| Sean M. Lyden |
A friend asked for my advice. He had received an email from a frustrated customer disputing a six-figure invoice. The lesson I shared to help him resolve the issue can apply to any leader – including fleet managers – when trying to defuse a tense situation via email. I finished reading his email draft and […]

Electrification: Ambitious Goals, Practical Realities

I spent a few days in June at the Electric Utility Fleet Managers Conference in Williamsburg, Virginia. Ann Brown-Hailey, Seth Skydel, the EUFMC board and the entire EUFMC staff put on an amazing event. It felt great to see everyone in person for the first time in three years. The theme that pervaded the conference: […]

Electrifying Heavy-Duty Trucks with Hydrogen

Any fleet pursuing a goal of 100% electrification will need to plan to include hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles in their mix, specifically for their Class 8 truck segment. That was the overarching theme of a Green Truck Summit panel session – “How Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Will Affect Work Trucks” – that I attended in March […]

Navigating Post-Pandemic Challenges

As we head into spring, the fleet industry is starting to get back to some sort of normalcy after what has felt like a two-year winter. After skipping last year, the NTEA Work Truck Show is back in Indianapolis in March. And EUFMC returns to Williamsburg, Virginia, in June after a two-year hiatus. But some […]

Win Them Over

As a fleet manager, your role is about more than managing assets; you also must manage and work with people to get things done. Think about it. No matter how bulletproof you believe your proposal might be for, say, why the fleet department should receive a larger budget this year, you can expect some pushback […]

Making the Best of the Way Things Turn Out

| Sean M. Lyden |
The delta variant. Automotive plant shutdowns. Order-to-delivery delays. So much is in flux right now. And that’s when uncertainty and anxiety often begin to deplete our energy and cloud our judgment. But in times like these, I’m reminded of a powerful quote by the legendary basketball coach John Wooden, who said, “Things turn out best […]

The State of Fuel Prices

As of press time, the national average price of gasoline is $3.13 a gallon, up 44% from $2.18 a year ago, according to AAA, when the pandemic lockdowns were in full force, stifling fuel consumption. And California, the most expensive market, is already at $4.31. So, what’s driving the surge in fuel prices? There are […]

Regain Your Focus

It’s easy to keep your focus when you have a rush of proverbial fires to put out. You know, like dealing with unexpected equipment breakdowns, handling complaints from business unit supervisors about delayed vehicle orders, or maintaining sufficient staffing levels in the shop during a pandemic as techs get sick or exposed and must stay […]

Developments to Watch in Self-Driving Trucks

Just three years ago, the media was all abuzz about how a brave new self-driving world was right around the corner. Today, the media and industry analysts have slow-rolled their predictions as technology companies and automakers still grapple with developing autonomous driving systems that are ready for prime time on a large scale. As it […]

Why California’s Ban on Gas and Diesel Vehicles Matters

In September, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that his state will ban the sale of new light-duty gasoline and diesel vehicles, effective in 2035. And by 2045, new medium- and heavy-duty trucks sold in California must also be zero-emissions. So, what does this news mean for utility fleets? It means that the transportation industry is […]

Who Can You Trust?

| Sean M. Lyden |
Whatever task you’re performing as a fleet professional – whether it’s purchasing equipment, hiring new technicians or presenting your case for a budget increase – you have to work with a wide range of different types of people to accomplish your objectives. But how can you tell who you can trust? Try using a system […]

You Ask, We Answer: Your Research Team for Navigating These Uncharted Waters

One of the challenges of providing you with content that offers timely and interesting insights is that so much is changing so quickly in the world and in our industry. The coronavirus pandemic has pushed utility fleets to re-evaluate how they operate, spec vehicles and manage their shops. For example, in cases where vehicles are […]