The team at Thumbtack HQ has used Service Pros for everything from wedding planning to body painting. But when I heard that three Thumbtack employees received quotes from driving instructors, but chosen the same Service Pro – I was intrigued. “Who is this mystery Pro,” I wondered, “and what made this Driving Jedi’s quotes stand out from the rest?”
The Pro in question is Derrick Scott of Apex Driving School. Since 1986, Derrick has been teaching drivers that “safe driving is serious serious business, but learning needn’t be.” As highlighted in his dozens of reviews from past students, Derrick uses great communication, a soothing voice and quick wit to balance instilling his students with his straightforward, safe driving philosophy and putting them at ease with silly anecdotes.
Each of my coworkers had glowing things to say about Derrick, and apparently, the feeling is mutual. Derrick told me, “You guys represented well the qualities we have enjoyed with clients typical from Thumbtack referrals – reliable, considerate, intelligent, savvy, appreciative of good service, and really fun to be around! I would love to build my business around Thumbtack.”
Danica Tiu, Associate Product Marketing Manager
I’ve lived in cities with great transportation my entire life – NYC, Chicago, and now, San Francisco. While it was mildly embarrassing to pull out a state ID at bars (and have friends exclaim in shock, horror, and/or awe at my lack of driving skills), what finally urged me to get behind the wheel was the Bay Area’s beautiful scenery. Without a car, wine country and hiking adventures are next to impossible.
Confession: I took driving lessons 8 years ago in New York, but they were a total disaster. Ever since, the thought of driving has put me on edge and I knew that, to conquer my fear, I’d need a calm, patient and experienced instructor. Through Thumbtack, I found Derrick, read his rave reviews (especially ones left by former anxious drivers), and – within the first five minutes of meeting him – knew I’d found the right instructor.
I could tell you about how Derrick’s infinite patience, easygoing personality, and sparkling sense of humor made every driving lesson fun, including my first time driving through downtown San Francisco (during rush hour!) and my first time on the freeway. But I believe that my road test – and the kind of driver I’ve become – is truly testament to Derrick’s phenomenal teaching. Although I spent the night before my road test nervously fretting, as soon as my proctor told me to start the car, I knew I was leaving the DMV with a license.
I came to Derrick an anxious, apprehensive driver; after taking lessons with him, I’m calm and confident on the road.
Alexander Kojevnikov, Software Engineer
I have licenses from four different countries (now five!) and have driven in many more. But apparently all those little differences in road rules play against you at the test. Which is what I want you to keep in mind when I tell you that I failed my first driving test in California. (I know, so embarrassing). Another of our coworkers had taken lessons with Derrick so I thought, why not? I figured he could help me with what’s important to pass the test.
After one two-hour lesson with Derrick, passing was a breeze. Derrick patiently went through everything that would be on the test until everything was close to perfect.
Adrien Olczak, Product Designer
I looked at several profiles of driving instructors on Thumbtack and Derrick had no match. He had long and detailed videos of his lessons and tons of good reviews. (Plus, a driving school with “Apex” in its name for a car guy like me was a good sign.)
One of his teachers, Ron, was my instructor and had fun stories and materials to explain usually boring theoretical subjects. At one point he pulled out two little toy cars and a square metal plate that represented an intersection to walk me through the stop concepts. Actually seeing the cars move and him explaining why each step was happening made the learning fun and interactive. I’ve never had a teacher use such creative methods to teach adults!
Thanks Derrick and the Apex team! Clearly you’re making the San Francisco roads safer. At least the ones en route to Thumbtack HQ.