What If It Was About the Traveler?

There wouldn’t be much need for Movability Austin, and that would be great by us. But for now, the traditional transportation approach is still “we build it and you figure out how to use it” and that keeps us busy providing people – particularly employees – with assistance finding and using travel options. We do that by providing high quality personal services, like lunch & learn events, Let’s Go lunches and happy hours, Commuter Pop-Up breakfasts, and office hours that give employees a chance to get personal travel planning help.tc rapid to lunch feb 2014 2

Now, thanks to a grant from CAMPO, Movability Austin is piloting something bigger. Something that is able to help more people, even more quickly, and all with the same personal touch. It’s an approach to mobility that takes place on an individual level, and it’s a technique other cities have used for years.

Movability Austin will hire and train energetic, personable personal travel advisors, who will in turn work with downtown employees to help them take advantage of options. To help with this, we are hiring experts from the United Kingdom to provide training in Motivational Interviewing, an exciting new technique that helps people decide their own reasons for changing their travel behavior and then assists them through the transition.

Behavioral science is telling us that most people really do want and need a person helping them to change their travel behavior. The exciting part of the Motivational Interviewing is that Austin will become one of the only places in the U.S. with people trained to provide the right kind of help – to focus on collaboration, on exploration rather than persuasion, and on interests you already have over “telling you how you should think and feel”.

We think this approach – working with people and this spirit of engagement – can be priceless for most transportation professionals. As a consequence, we will have a limited number of seats available to interested public sector professionals. If you are staff with the City, Capital Metro, or any other transportation agency and you work closely with people using the transportation you provide, then you could benefit from this training. Contact Glenn for more information or to register.

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