“That is one of our biggest problems: Finding the right people that know how to do the job and also want to do the job. Want to work. And it’s not just here. There’s places around the country that are far worse than it is here, too. A lot of people don’t want to get their hands dirty anymore.
“We get a lot of people that have been to two years of technical training school and they feel like they should be making what a ten-year veteran is making right out of the gate. Most of the time, we have better luck out of people who haven’t been to school and we can actually train them ourselves the way we want to do it then we have with ones that have been to school for it.
“Hands-on experience is by far the best thing we have found for getting a good mechanic, most of the time. The best advice I can give to someone who is fresh out of school is to find a place that has someone like my boss. And I say that because he is willing to take the time to help you if you want to be helped, to get you from having the book smarts of knowing how things work to being able to actually apply that in the field and bill out hours in the week like you need to do to make money off doing it.
“The books don’t close when you leave the classroom. We get a lot of free training from different part stores in here, and that is offered. We have one guy here that the only training he’s had is from the boss or those trainings. Every time there is one of those classes, he is there with bells on, paying attention and ready to learn.
“As new techs, they get a vehicle that comes in the door, and they can tell you the theory behind it and how it works, but to actually apply that on something you can bill out is a whole other story. The practical experience. Be patient; be willing to learn that and don’t just think that you automatically know it all.”