Women in Transport – Most comfortable in the HOT SEAT

3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineSeptember 27, 2016

Operations not for everyone but Lisa Rohloff just loves putting her heart into Sole’s Lisa Rohloff is no newcomer to the transport industry.
When she left school at 16 she worked as a customer services officer for New Zealand Couriers Ltd in New Plymouth, taking job bookings and dispatching.

Over the next 10 years Lisa worked in both the office and as a courier.
Lisa took time off work to raise a family, keeping her hand in as a relief driver on her father’s courier run.

In 2010 her children had reached school age and she decided it was time to re-enter the workforce, taking a position with G J Sole Transport Ltd in Bell Block on the outskirts of New Plymouth. It was a payroll position and at that time the company had a staff of approximately 80. It didn’t take long before Lisa’s natural affinity with dispatching proved too much, and she began ‘sticking her nose in’, taking an interest in the dispatcher’s role.

Noeline Sole, manager and co-owner of the company, could see Lisa had a lot of potential. At the time the company was busy in both logging and the transport of oil industry equipment, so Noeline made the decision to move Lisa into the dispatch area under the wing of company dispatcher, Phil.

This allowed Lisa to build on her skills with the back-up of a seasoned dispatcher.

After a break away working elsewhere, Lisa returned to G J Sole in 2015, this time finding her niche as a full time member of the despatch department.

Lisa controls 35 trucks, mainly in logging, and is well respected among the drivers. In logging it is essential to have the right person for the job, ensuring trucks are sent to the right place at the right time for the right reasons.
The following day’s start times are given each afternoon either verbally or via cellular phone and Lisa also conveys maintenance requirements received from the field to the mechanics in the company workshop. All this helps operations to run consistently and smoothly. 

Lisa Rohloff is a great example of how taking the time to find your niche can pay off. A dispatcher’s job is not an easy one, but she copes well by ensuring high levels of communication with all parties, and above all, maintaining her sense of humour.

Photo at the top by Paul Livsey