To celebrate the launch of Regional Driver Lounges last week, we hosted a series of AMAs — a term coined by reddit for "Ask Me Anything" – featuring a different Lyft HQ team member each day of the week. In case you missed ’em, here's our roundup of the best questions and answers:
Paul Thompson, Driver Training Manager
What are easy mistakes new drivers can make? What do you recommend to prevent them from happening?
New drivers make one mistake commonly ... they forget to start the ride. But that's not actually the mistake. The mistake is calling Support. You don't need to! Our system automatically cross-references the driver and passenger's GPS locations and calculates the ride anyway, so there's no need to worry. Just keep on keepin' on.
Why do we still fill out hour availability?
There are two reasons to login to the Driver Portal and reserve hours:
- To see estimates on how much you can expect to make, and
- To set up a reminder so that if you do want to reserve specific hours, you don't forget!
But now that reliability rating is gone, you definitely don't NEED to reserve hours. It's just a benefit to those who prefer it.
Nora Brouder, Creative Copywriter
What was the idea behind the fistbump?
The fistbump, in my eyes, is a friendly ice breaker that sets the tone for the rest of the ride. It starts things off with an actual connection, so you and your passenger are more open to awesome conversation and a good interaction. I love the fistbump!
Is it possible to create videos specifically for individual cities?
We just released an awesome video today set partially in Indiana, have you seen it? I worked on the copy for it, and it's a great story! That being said, if you have ideas for videos in your city, share them with us, we're always looking for new ideas.
Julia Grebenstein, Senior Support Associate
Why the decision to make the support line emergencies-only?
I’ve been a part of Lyft Support for over a year, and I’ve watched our team scale to meet the demand for being 24 hours a day. One of the things we’ve had to do is think critically about how to best respond to all of the questions we get.
It is incredibly important to us that we not miss calls from drivers that have been an in accident or are reporting a safety concern. Because of this, we have decided to make our phone line emergency-only. Not only does this help us quickly respond to drivers that need real time help, it makes it so that we can have a faster email turn around time because less people need to be on phones.
What are the top concerns people email about?
Our number-one issue is Lost and Found. A great habit to get in to is to do a quick glance around your car before you zoom off to meet your next passenger.
What's the most offbeat support request you've ever received?
The driver that requested his driver deposit be in bitcoins. I very nicely reminded him we don’t live in Super Mario World. ;)
Ryan Hupfer, Director of Community
What suggestions do you have for us to foster a greater sense of community?
I think sharing stories and helping each other out is what's going to make this Regional Lounge be the best that it can be. Support one another, no matter where you're from, and if at all possible have a regional hangout at some point so you can all meet each other. It's so cool when drivers from different cities meet up. Oh, and lots of photos — those are always a great way to share your city with one another.
Can you talk about the challenge of maintaining community standards through something like the Mentor Program?
We give a lot of responsibility to Mentors, and if it's not managed well, there could be some issues. Me and the rest of my team are always keeping an eye on Mentor quality and ways to make sure it's where it should be. It's not going to be perfect, but we're getting there.
The one thing I love is that we have the chance to do something that's very unique -- grow our next generation of drivers with the help of our own community. It's very empowering for each city to be able to have such a large stake in the future of what Lyft is locally. As time goes on, we're putting systems into place that will limit the amount of Mentors who might be taking advantage of the system and will reward Mentors like you who care about Lyft and are in touch with the standards we have for driver quality.
Many thanks to Paul, Nora, Julia, and Ryan for sharing their words of wisdom!
Got a question that wasn't answered during our week of AMAs? Ask it in the comments below.