Posts tagged with commuter champion
We love our long-term clean commuters! They’re in on a secret we’re trying to share with all of metro Atlanta: Ditching the drive-alone commute has long-term benefits for savings, stress levels and work-life balance.
We chatted with Jason Headley, Sean Savoy, Dale Wesson, and Ryan Walker who work in Chick-fil-A’s corporate IT department and have been carpooling together for more than 10 years. Take a look and think about how carpooling could change your work life!
Tell us when you got started carpooling, and why.
Our carpool was started back in 2006 as a result of high gas prices. We were looking for ways to stop spending so much money on gas. Jason Headley emailed several people in the IT department who live in the Newnan area and asked if anyone was interested in carpooling. A core group of five of us has continued carpooling for years. Three of our four guys live in the same neighborhood. The fourth guy drives about ten minutes to meet us each day at 8:00 am. We are back around 5:45-6:00 each day.
What do you like most about your commute?
Personally, I like the social aspect, the ability to bounce ideas off the other guys, and the occasional quiet days.
What benefits have you seen from not driving alone?
Saving money is, by far, the biggest benefit of our carpool to us. (Most of the guys in our carpool have a tendency toward being “cheap.”) We have better work-life balance than we had before carpooling. We are much more likely to leave the office at a consistent time each day. And we have become good friends over the years. You get to know someone pretty well after spending an hour a day with them for ten years. We take time to pray for each other and what is going on in our lives. We have unofficially elected one of our guys to be our “Carpool Chaplain."
What do you do while you carpool?
We talk about our families and what is going on in our lives. We have formed strong friendships over a ten-year period. Sometimes the commute is a quiet ride. We’re all drained from working all day and don’t say much of anything during the commute. Occasionally someone will fall asleep while riding.
A lot of times, one or more guys in our carpool are working during the commute; it’s not unusual to see one or more laptops open. With improvements in technology, we can connect into the office while riding in the car. We also have lots of work discussions or meetings that we just can’t find time for during the work day. Since we all work in the IT department, we can discuss current projects or issues. Carpooling allows us to bounce ideas off one another. It is safe to say the company gets several more hours of productivity from us each week as a direct result of our carpool.
How does this setup sound to you, commuters? Would you like your commute to look more like this one — savings, naps, work-life balance and all? We can help. Take the first step toward finding your own carpool buddies today! Find a ridematch today.
When I was transferred to Atlanta five years ago, I knew from previously living here that I had to make housing choices that worked with the MARTA rail system. I was not prepared to return to a life behind the wheel driving to work. I went online and used the rail map for MARTA to limit my search for housing. I ended up living in Alpharetta so that I could use MARTA for both a quick bus ride down to the North Springs rail station and a train the rest of the way to work.
I work in the heart of downtown Atlanta, but my 32-mile drive is now a peaceful 5 minutes behind the wheel to the Park and Ride lot at Windward Parkway.
In the five years I have been back, I have never driven to work — not once. I buy gas once or twice a month, and that is more for personal driving than the little I drive to reach MARTA. No parking fees, no gas, no stress. I think the "no stress" part is what I appreciate the most. Arriving at work relaxed and already caught up on the morning email is a nice bonus to saving pollution, gas, and vehicle expenses.
Darrell is a 25,000 Commuter Champion and works for the Social Security Administration. To learn more about the Commuter Champion program, visit GaCommuteOptions.com/champions.