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Hi guys I’m in high school and interested in becoming an auto technician from your experience what would the best thing for me to do my dad says I should get a job at a shop and build trust to make sure I really want this I’m thinking of getting a 2 year associates degree and certifications needed what kindve school should I go to if needed and what should I do right now to prepare? Thanks, Joe

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On 10/15/2022 at 10:24 AM, Joseph Collins said:

Hi guys I’m in high school and interested in becoming an auto technician from your experience what would the best thing for me to do my dad says I should get a job at a shop and build trust to make sure I really want this I’m thinking of getting a 2 year associates degree and certifications needed what kindve school should I go to if needed and what should I do right now to prepare? Thanks, Joe

Hi Joe. Congratulations on your initiative. What a great idea to draw upon the experience of an auto shop owners group, I don't think many others in your situation would have thought of it. Hopefully your high school has an automotive program as it's a great way to get introduced to the industry. In my senior year I worked half days at Sears in the automotive department and it gave me the experience to know that it was the right career for me. In my opinion, two years of experience is better than two years of schooling. You can get your ASE certs either way but these are only really needed to get certain jobs and have very little bearing on the practical knowledge required to work in a shop. A person with two years experience is far ahead of a person fresh out of a two year degree, provided the experience was gained at a shop with the right atmosphere. It is indeed a great time to get into this industry or any trade really.

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

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      It always amazes me when I hear about a technician who quits one repair shop to go work at another shop for less money. I know you have heard of this too, and you’ve probably asked yourself, “Can this be true? And Why?” The answer rests within the culture of the company. More specifically, the boss, manager, or a toxic work environment literally pushed the technician out the door.
      While money and benefits tend to attract people to a company, it won’t keep them there. When a technician begins to look over the fence for greener grass, that is usually a sign that something is wrong within the workplace. It also means that his or her heart is probably already gone. If the issue is not resolved, no amount of money will keep that technician for the long term. The heart is always the first to leave. The last thing that leaves is the technician’s toolbox.
      Shop owners: Focus more on employee retention than acquisition. This is not to say that you should not be constantly recruiting. You should. What it does means is that once you hire someone, your job isn’t over, that’s when it begins. Get to know your technicians. Build strong relationships. Have frequent one-on-ones. Engage in meaningful conversation. Find what truly motivates your technicians. You may be surprised that while money is a motivator, it’s usually not the prime motivator.
      One last thing; the cost of technician turnover can be financially devastating. It also affects shop morale. Do all you can to create a workplace where technicians feel they are respected, recognized, and know that their work contributes to the overall success of the company. This will lead to improved morale and team spirit. Remember, when you see a technician’s toolbox rolling out of the bay on its way to another shop, the heart was most likely gone long before that.
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