For twelve years, Julie Trosen drove school buses, but then she upgraded her career at Metro Transit. And, if you ask her, she’s never looking back. She found the pay and the benefits second-to-none.
“I plan to be here until I retire,” Trosen said. “Even on the toughest days, I love my job.”
Which is good news for Metro Transit and its riders. In under a year, she not only went from part-time to full-time employment, but she’s received multiple commendations on multiple different routes for her positive interaction with riders, who compliment her on her communication.
“When a rider boards with a negative mood, it can change the energy on the bus. I aim to keep my bus positive by greeting people the minute they step on,” Trosen said. “The little things like saying hello and asking how people are doing go a long way.”
This is important to Trosen who gets her energy from people. After six years of working with children on special education buses, which can include kids with behavioral problems, she’s learned a thing or two about keeping a situation positive.
“You just have to listen. Not just hear but listen to what your rider is telling you.” Trosen said. “There’s a lot of negativity in the world, so it’s just about how you respond to it.”
She specifically recalls a situation where what she did helped create a positive mood onboard. Recently, she noticed a rider carrying a cake. Trosen asked her what it was for, and she responded that she was throwing a birthday party for herself because her kids forgot it. Trosen immediately said “Happy Birthday, I hope you have a great one.” Every rider who walked by her followed suit and wished her a happy birthday.
“I wish I could have done more,” Trosen said. “But, just wishing her a happy birthday and having the rest of the bus respond must have made her day.”
After being at the wheel just under a year, the praise keeps coming in about Trosen. But, she wants to keep the focus on more than just herself.
“I’m not the only great bus driver out there!”
Operator at a Glance: Julie Trosen
Hired: January 2017
Routes: 5, 14, 61, 643, 663. If you ask her, she loves every Route she drives.
Family: Husband and a seven-year-old boy. "My husband is my rock."
Hobbies: Reading and watching crime novels and TV shows. NCIS is her favorite show. She loves reading Lee Childs and Nora Roberts.
Accomplishment: Julie has received commendations and compliments for her communication with passengers on express Route 672, local Route 19, and State Fair routes.
Best Advice: Say “hi,” “bye,” and “have a good night” no matter who they are or how you’re feeling that day. And, always remember to take things in stride.