Emotional Driving is at the very heart of the company’s strategy and unites in its goal, mission and development one of the corporate commitments to their employees: safety.
Our staff makes more than 10 million road trips per year. The safety and well-being of our employees is a priority goal in the company, not only in the workplace but also outside it.
Indeed, Emotional Driving was born with a very clear aspiration: to raise awareness and motivate the company’s employees, and by extension society as a whole, through positive and emotional messages to drive responsibly and safely. We have always felt that Gonvarri’s involvement in road safety is a duty, because of who we are, what we do and how we think. And this program allows us to provide value and values to our people and society, a coherent and honest commitment that goes beyond the products we design and manufacture.
Moreover, when the project was initiated, the company clearly perceived that a consensusexisted among its employees that the problem of road safety is relevant to them, that it affects them directly. A reality that concerns everyone, workers and their families. Therefore, for all of them it is also reassuring to know that the company shows real concern for an issue that compromises the safety of its people inside and outside the workplace. It is a gesture that they value and appreciate.
Five years have passed since the beginning of this exciting journey, five fruitful years since that first stop at Gonvarri’s headquarters in Madrid. That was the first road show, the first contact of the employees with Emotional Driving, and the first confirmation that the chosen model was the right one and that the campaign would enjoy a long life. This was all made clear by the high acceptance of and participation and involvement in the event. The key was to make it a fun and educational family day, and a collaborative challenge in which everyone had to actively participate in each of the three phases of the road show: experience (road safety day), emotional (Emotional Driving Challenge) and training (the most rational phase). Genuine, accessibly familiar statements, positive messages, rollover simulators, road safety experts, motivating challenges… these were all powerful stimuli that have gradually but continuously permeated the daily lives of the employees who have taken part in the project.
The day starts with a powerful double-header. On the one hand, they listen to statements packed with emotion and positive lessons from people involved in road accidents; both victims and the professionals who attend to them (firemen, policemen, doctors). These are very tough, sincere and intimate testimonies, as overwhelming as the reality itself, which likewise profoundly impact the audience and exert a powerful effect that is difficult to forget. This is because participants are not listening to statistics, data or reasoning, they are listening to real stories of real people, told in the first person, in flesh and blood, right in front of them. Someone with a spinal cord injury who has been forced to start a new life condemned to a wheelchair, a fireman who has had to pull free a victim trapped in the wreckage of their vehicle, a doctor who is fighting to save the life of a child on the way to the hospital… People whose accounts are convincing because they have lived through them or suffered from them, who know that something as seemingly innocuous as answering a WhatsApp message or drinking a glass of wine can have terrible consequences. For the driver, for their family, for all the others involved in the accident. The positive lesson is that it is always better to arrive safely than to rush, that it is always better to err on the side of caution than to do so out of a lack of awareness. And on the other hand, the participants take part in almost real road safety experiences, in simulators managed by expert trainers; needless to say, these sensations are very difficult to forget (although the danger is controlled).
Employees who participate in road shows certainly have motives to drive safely. Although, as is true for everyone, we don’t always put this into practice. That’s why sometimes we need to experience reality to learn the lesson. Not on the road, of course, but in simulators. This is one of the fundamental – and favorite – activities of the road safety day. All the participants have the opportunity to get into a very realistic rollover simulator, or to put on blurred vision glasses, mimicking being drunk. Always with the help of expert trainers, they have the opportunity to sit behind the wheel and “drive” along a road, as they do every day to go to work, pick up the kids from school or head to the beach. The difference is that, this time, a distraction, their blurred vision or lack of reflexes indeed has consequences: the car overturns or crashes into another vehicle. Even if it is a controlled and minor accident, everyone who has tried the simulator experience has the same reaction: they get out impressed and much more aware. Despite traveling at a relatively low speed, the crash or rollover does not leave anyone indifferent. What if they had crashed at the speed at which they normally drive? What if they had forgotten to put their seat belts on?
What if their young children were traveling as passengers in the back seat? Just thinking about that possibility turns many of them pale. “No, that can’t happen,” they say to themselves. But yes, it does happen. And it can happen to you. Both experiences, the real testimonies and the almost real accidents, more than achieve their goal: to make Gonvarri’s employees aware of the risks they face when driving unsafely, as well as the consequences that recklessness can have on their lives and on the people they love. Needless to say, no one ends the road safety day the same way they began it.
A slightly better society
Gonvarri’s managers actively participate in the conferences, and encourage employees to participate and reflect. On occasions, they also share their own thoughts and experiences, their personal vision of road safety. For example, Juan Llovet, Gonvarri’s Director of Communication and Sustainability, and a promoter of Emotional Driving, offers a message of responsibility: “We are not aware of the risk we take every time we get into a car, both for our relatives and for other drivers, and the criminal and civil consequences we may face for having had a glass of wine or for having used our mobile phone. The damage we can do is infinite.” To Llovet it is very important for us to be aware of this risk, but it is equally important to know how to convey it as a positive message.
What motivates you to drive safely?
This first experiential phase of testimonies and experiences is followed by a more emotional and intimate scenario aimed at strengthening the positive motivation that is the essence of the program. This is a challenge, the Emotional Driving Challenge, which poses a very personal reflection to the participants: “What motivates you to drive safely?” The question is simple, goes straight to the heart, and each person’s answer, coming from their heart, is shared with the others. To help participants connect emotionally, the question is posed before a shocking image: a wrecked car, a picture of twisted iron, broken glass… There are no people in sight, but it is not difficult to place oneself in that scene, to imagine that it is you, or a family member, or a friend, who may have suffered the fatal accident. It is a matter of being aware that it can also happen to you, or to someone near you. And it is in this context that the question posed by the Emotional Driving Challenge becomes fully meaningful: “What motivates you
to drive safely?”
“We want to be your seat belt.” This is the slogan coined by Emotional Driving from the start and with which it set out from the Gonvarri factories in 2016, with the aim of reaching the maximum number of drivers in society as a whole. Two years after the program began, Gonvarri’s employees were fully aware of what was at stake every time they drove on the road, and most of them had incorporated basic safety measures into their daily habits. For example, ignoring their mobile phones when they get into a car, sitting behind the wheel in the correct position or keeping their tires in good condition. They had understood that these small acts, which may seem inconsequential, are actually capable of saving lives.
In this same vein of stories told from the perspective of emotion and personal experience, different online videos were launched coinciding with the times of year with the greatest number of car journeys, especially critical moments for road safety, such as Easter, Christmas or the key summer dates. These are awareness-raising campaigns that have won numerous awards and recognition and, much more importantly, have gained thousands of views on the Internet.
Road safety is also a child’s business
It is one of the most successful and moving initiatives included in the Emotional Driving program. The campaign begins with the question that is the basis of the program and which challenges all of us: “What motivates you to drive safely?” Analyzing the answers obtained in the different road shows, at Gonvarri we understood that there is no greater motivation to drive in a responsible and prudent way than the thought of our own children. Thus, the campaign “Road safety is also a child’s business” was born. This time it is the children of Gonvarri’s employees themselves who send their parents messages, via their mobile phones, reminding them how much they love them, and how important it is for them to drive safely, before they say goodbye with a “I love you very much, Dad”. The parents receive the message when they get into the car and are moved. Deeply touched and with all five senses focused on the road, they set off on their way home, aware of what they may lose because of a distraction. What they love most in the world. Their children.
#Thanks Truck Drivers, the road safety no campaign
The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, just before Easter, altered the message of Emotional Driving’s traditional road safety campaigns, which coincide with the periods of the year when car travel generally increases. Given the scenario of confinement and quarantine, our “We want to be your seat belt” motto made no sense at all, as it was not the time to make these recommendations. There was no point in recommending that drivers should be careful at the wheel and drive responsibly as they were not going anywhere.
But, while a large part of the population stayed at home and joined forces to defeat the virus, there were people who continued with their professional activities, making this anomalous situation as normal as possible.
The best message, like the best driver, is the one that reaches its destination
Another action that had an enormous impact was the driving course held at the Jarama Circuit. Although all of Gonvarri’s employees are exposed to accidents, the company’s salespeople are the ones who accumulate the most hours behind the wheel. This is why the employees of the Sales Department were chosen to receive a complete course given by RACE, to which an important mission was added: to act as ambassadors of road safety to the rest of the staff.
At Christmas, forget about the mobile phone at the wheel
Another high impact video was launched during the 2017 Christmas campaign. Through a WhatsApp conversation, we learn that Javier is heading home on Christmas Day to celebrate the holidays with his parents and family and is bringing a surprise for his mother. He mentions this to her in the car, while he is driving, and his mother is concerned. That’s not a responsible attitude, she says. Javier tells her she has nothing to worry about. He is not driving, but rather a very special person is: the surprise he is bringing her, his new partner.
Here the story comes to a close and the video ends with a message that could not be more reasonable and positive, in tune with Emotional Driving. Every Christmas many people die on the road. One out of three do so because of their mobile phones. The best message, like the best driver, is the one that reaches its destination. At Christmas, ignore your mobile phone you are driving.
Responsible mobile phone use
“Gonvarri is committed to technology and mobility in order to offer you a more agile and collaborative work environment, providing you with the best tools to carry out your work, bringing out the best in you. After a first quarter full of work and exciting challenges, the first break of the year arrives, Easter, and with it, a few days off that we will undoubtedly take advantage of to disconnect from work. So, at this time of year, make responsible use of your mobile phone. Not only at the wheel, but also when you are with your loved ones, so that nothing and nobody prevents you from enjoying good times with them”. These were the words of the campaign that Emotional Driving launched at Easter 2018, and which went one step further.
One of Emotional Driving’s most impressive campaigns has been the web series created to make drivers aware of the need for a responsible attitude behind the wheel. It was based on four true stories, told in the first person, which not only move us, but above all force us to reflect. The testimonies of Sonia, Gustavo, Mar and truck Drivers have touched the hearts of tens of thousands of people around the world.
The condition of the tires, always in optimum condition
As drivers, we are ultimately responsible for the condition of our vehicle. We all like to keep our car spotless or enjoy a fully functioning air conditioner on hot summer days. We clean the windscreen for optimum visibility, check the oil level and always wear our seat belts. But we often forget one of the elements that most influences the degree of safety of our car: its tires.
Tires are our point of contact with the asphalt, which allows the vehicle to move forward, yes, but also allows it to turn, brake, maintain a straight line or provide it with stability in heavy rain. Tires are even a determining factor in fuel consumption. But they don’t last forever, they are not eternal, and they don’t always remain in perfect condition. As the kilometers pile up, their level of performance and safety declines. And if they are not properly checked, and replaced when it is time, they can become a risk to our safety.
Emotional Driving 2015-2020
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