Limo driving is traditionally a man's game. A December 2012 article by Tampa-based "Pure Limousines" noted that fewer than five percent of limo drivers in the U.S. are women. The company pointed out that this actually presents an opportunity for women with the right attitude to connect with particular clients who might prefer a female driver.
One of the core attitude requirements for a limo driver is a friendly demeanor. Setting a professional tone with clients begins when you greet them at pick-up. While celebrity limo drivers often bear a more stoic expression, typical clients and customers of limo services appreciate a driver who is friendly and easy to engage. A smile and friendly "hello" give the impression that you are approachable and pleasant to work with. A professional driver must also recognize the balance between engaging a friendly business associate versus more somber clients attending a funeral.
Limo drivers don't just drive a car, they provide a professional service to clients who normally pay top dollar for a high-class experience. Thus, limo companies typically look for drivers with a customer-centric or service-oriented attitude. Opening the door for clients, stowing luggage and answering questions are simply responsibilities of a driver. A customer-centric attitude also helps a driver act with flexibility in handling special requests or when a client ask for a detour from prescribed travel plans.
Of course, the most critical role of a limo driver is to safely transport passengers to and from destinations. Companies usually do background checks with emphasis on driving records. Some companies won't hire drivers with moving violations, especially more recent ones. A defensive driving attitude is desired. Customer surveys often ask for feedback on the driving practices of a driver. Knowledge of the area or use of GPS technology to follow best routes and offer guidance to clients is also preferred.
Gossip is not part of professional limo driving. Drivers often have privy to personal conversations among clients or professional discussions by business patrons. Some customers easily forget that their driver is just a few feet away when they are chatting in the backseat. Professional limo drivers exercise discretion to protect the personal conversations and confidential business exchanges of their clients.
Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.