Making a living as a skilled tradesperson is much easier today as nearly all trades are facing a shortage of skilled labor. While “blue-collar jobs” have long attracted young professionals, in recent years they have been hesitant to take up such jobs. A career as a skilled tradesperson today means a lucrative, respectable, and increasingly sophisticated way to earn a living. If you understand what it takes to be successful in a skilled trade, you will be well-positioned.
Pick the Right Trade
You have to start by picking the right trade that matches your skillset. There are several pathways to becoming a skilled tradesperson, among which HVAC technicians, electricians, plumbers, and contractors are high in demand. A vocational program is the most common starting point. These programs are offered by trade technical schools, community colleges, universities, or other educational institutions. These programs teach you the basic skills required at an accelerated rate.
Determine what sort of job you want
As a skilled tradesman, you will have the opportunity to choose how further you want to get in your career. Just picking a trade is not enough, for instance, you might want to go the electrical route, but it is not as simple. Do you want to work as a residential electrician on your own or for a local company? Do you expect to be a lineman for large utility companies? Do you want to join a large commercial electrical work? At the outset, all of these are electrical roles, but their day-to-day realities are very different. This is why you need to decide whether you are willing to learn extra skills that will be required to expand your career.
Learn necessary skills
A skilled tradesperson has both technical and practical knowledge to do the job in addition to mandatory soft skills.
Depending on the field you choose and the position you desire, technical knowledge will vary. If you want to be an electrician, then you will need to learn the fundamentals of electricity and the implementation of electrical codes. If you want to be an HVAC contractor, understanding and learning the theory behind refrigeration is important and so on. Your skills can only be improved if you get a lot of hands-on experience in the field you choose. Doing the contract works the best way to learn these skills. As far as soft skills are concerned, following direction is the single most important skill you will require as a tradesperson.
Stand out from the crowd
Finding employment once you acquire technical and practical knowledge will not be difficult. But, if you want to rise above your peers, you had to show commitment to your trade by furthering your knowledge. Continuing education (CE) is an excellent way to keep your skills and knowledge updated. Even for license renewal exams, CE courses will prove to be beneficial. TradesmanCE.com is a reliable provider of continuing education for licensed electricians, HVAC technicians, contractors, and plumbers.
Your start in a trade might be slow and you will likely do a lot of menial work to learn the basics, but remember all of this is necessary to learn the ropes of the trade and earn your employer’s trust. Don’t be discouraged by redundant tasks or small up-front salaries, as toughening up will help you build a high-paying career without debt in no time.