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  Guest Editorial

Techs Should Have These Qualities

Posted 2/6/2004
By Brian Pelletier

An Apprentice Shares His Thoughts

As an apprentice, I've come to respect certain qualities in the technicians with whom I work. Following is a list of qualities I think any apprentice would appreciate in a technician.

I think the ideal technician is:

  • Committed to the trade for a long time to come.
  • Willing to share his tricks of the trade.
  • Willing to show me how to, and have me do more, structural- and frame-oriented repairs - until finally, I'm able to perform the repair myself.
  • Understanding of mistakes I make - due to the trial-and-error process.

The ideal technician also:

  • Understands that I do things a certain way because I've been taught or learned that way.
  • Doesn't stick me with putting together a job he tore apart - this only wastes time because a lot of times I have no idea what is going on with the job as far as new parts; then I take longer to figure out how something was torn down.
  • Knows how to keep multiple jobs flowing and can get new ones assigned.
  • Is a person who isn't afraid to help me or, if it looks like we're going to be cutting it close to the deadline, will help me double team a car and get it finished the day it has to go.
  • Realizes we are a team and applies that to dividing tasks, helping each other out, managing our time, making sure we both know what needs to be done on a job, etc.

By working with us today, you ensure a quality employee - and a quality repair - tomorrow.

As a final thought, I believe today's technicians must provide up-and-coming apprentices (tomorrow's technicians) with the skills necessary to complete the repairs essential to today's complicated and changing automobiles. It's nearly impossible for a person to get involved in a repair without first having been taught a vast amount of knowledge. And if no one is willing to take the time and energy to teach and take on an apprentice, where are tomorrow's technicians supposed to come from?

Brain Pelletier Brian Pelletier is an apprentice at Addison Auto Center; an ASA member business in Denver, and is a graduate of Pickens Tech in Aurora, Colo. He has had I-CAR training in a number of disciplines and is ASE certified in structural analysis, painting and refinishing, nonstructural analysis and damage repair.

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