The life of an automotive technician can be a difficult one at first. The work itself is physically demanding and minor cuts, burns, and bruises will become an almost inevitable part of your daily working life. However, the pay is good and satisfaction is abundant when you manage to diagnose that nagging problem that has had you stumped for the last few hours. If you love to tinker with cars or are genuinely very intrigued by how they work, then you should consider training to be an automotive technician.
Diagnosis and Repair
In order to determine whether this particular career path is for you, it is helpful to know exactly what a technician does. Clearly, the majority of the working day will be spent diagnosing and fixing automotive vehicles. As well as cars, there are also roles working with motorcycles and other motor-driven vehicles. However, a diesel mechanic is different and will generally require a different training program.
Most automotive technician’s jobs require regular contact with clients. As such, it is important that you have good verbal communication skills, both in person and over the phone. In addition to conversing with customers you will need to talk to colleagues, suppliers and others. In the larger workshops with a store front-end this may not be as necessary. Do be aware, though, that many workshops now offer the opportunity to discuss the problem directly with the technician responsible for fixing it.
Logical Problem Solving
Problem-solving skills are absolutely essential. While diagnosis is partially done via computers and hardware, it may still be necessary to carry out manual checks. For this reason, you will need good eyesight and very good hearing. Workshops can have a dimly lit, noisy atmosphere. You must be able to work effectively in these conditions.
Strength and Fitness
Physical strength and fitness is also important. You will be required to lift a minimum of 50 pounds on a regular basis. You will also be on your feet almost all day every day and often bent or stooped in awkward positions.
Memory and Knowledge
Because an automotive technician needs to know and understand a great deal of information regarding different cars and different parts, a good memory and a strong capacity to learn are vital. Much of this work and research will be completed during overtime or at weekends so a genuine interest will make it much easier.
Being an automotive technician requires a great deal of dexterity. Some repairs will be quite tedious and will be completed in confined spaces. Others will require the lifting and steadying of large, heavy objects. Your manual dexterity will help you complete all of these tasks and avoid injury.
Time Management and Organizational Skills
Organization and time management are important. On occasion you will be working simultaneously on several different vehicles. While you wait for a part for one car you will need to be working on a second car. Managing this workload properly will give you the ability to complete more tasks in less time.
Other Important Skills
You will want to be proactive with a solid work ethic. You will need to be able to work as part of a team but also operate efficiently when left to your own devices. Health and safety is also a very important aspect, so you must have a keen eye for detail and a willingness to clean up around yourself and after yourself. This prevents injury not only to yourself but others around you.
Starting with a Course at a Florida Automotive School
If you believe you possess these skills then the best place to start is by looking at the different courses that Florida automotive schools offer. Find the one that sounds the most appealing and beneficial to your exact career and enroll. Once you have completed your diploma, certificate or degree your first job will generally be as a technician’s assistant but you may be lucky enough to go straight in as a technician. Promotion will see you progress to specialist, then foreman, then manager or owner.
It is impossible to ignore that the work involved for an automotive technician is physically and mentally demanding. It also often necessitates long hours and difficult working conditions. However, there are nearly 1 million technicians working in the country at this moment and the majority would not change career for any reason. The rewards are very good, both financially and emotionally. The feeling of a difficult, strenuous job well done is difficult to beat.
View a list of automotive schools in Florida to find a program that fits your needs.