Chris Chesney: Ready, Set, Wait?! Are we ‘truly ready’ for new technologies?

Chris Chesney

Are we truly ready for the new technologies coming our way?

Let’s consider how to put education in action so your team recognizes and understands how to approach the service and repair of these amazing systems.

I’ve mentioned this many times over the last several years, but it is worth repeating.

The lack of foundation electrical/electronic skills in our bays today is astonishing.

But how can we expect anything other than this when we have no standard of competency to compare our people to?

Most of the vehicles you have in your bays today are equipped with a data network that requires a technician with a solid electronics foundation to understand and repair.

So the first step in becoming prepared for future technologies is to ensure anyone working on these technologies has a deep understanding of foundation electrical/electronics and is fluent in data network analysis and diagnosis.

These skills include the ability to effectively use a factory wiring diagram and a digital storage oscilloscope.


It means being able to read with full comprehension, the service information provided for the system being serviced.

It also means that not only can the technician understand and apply what they read but that they have the ability to teach these skills to others.

Proof of skill is a critical step in moving toward our goal of being competent in serving our customers.

So how do you put this process in place where you are able to create competent electronics experts?

First you need to identify those that have some or most of these attributes and those that do not.

Work with your training provider to schedule foundation electrical classes with hands on sessions in your market so you can enroll your entire team.

Yes, require all skill levels to attend the foundations courses.

Your goal is to create competent electricians.

Your inexperienced techs need to be exposed to the foundation skills and your experienced techs need to refresh their foundation skills.

What you’ll see is your advanced techs will mentor your less experienced techs during class and especially during hands on exercises.

After a few sessions, talk to your training provider about allowing your advanced techs that ability to teach portions of the class.

By engaging the advanced tech in the preparation of teaching your less experienced techs, you’ll see their growth in action.

I’ve seen this in action and the results are amazing.

Keep in mind it is not easy to ask a journeyman technician to attend a foundation electronics class.

But ask them to attend to assist in mentoring your younger techs and the context in their mind changes.

What you’ll find is an experienced tech who becomes much more engaged in not only the education of a less experienced tech but in themselves.

It also binds them together as mentor/mentee in a way that you may not be able to do by simply demanding they do so.

The end result is tremendous growth by both the mentor and the mentee.

But don’t stop there.

Find advanced courses for the mentor where they can grow their skills in the discipline where they can become the mentee.

And don’t settle for the response “I don’t need a foundation electronics course” or “I’ve been doing it this way for 20 years.”

This is the process of actively investing in your own education that you need to foster and support in order to grow the skills needed to service the technologies of today let alone the technologies of tomorrow.