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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    True or False:

    Someone wanting to be a good service tech should change employers every 3-5 years to gain exposure to a wider variety of equipment, customers, bosses, locations, etc.

    Discuss amongst yourselves

    eventu rerum stolidi didicere magistro

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    I wouldnt think so but I like the idea of working on differant eqipment. I think you are better sticking with a company if you are paid good , gives you all the hours you want, get along with coworkers , they are someone that will be there down the road ( never know for sure but if its run right has a better chance ), has a chance for advancement.
    Ok now leave that and hope the next shop you go to doesnt keep you a week and lay you off for lack of work.

    would that be a good idea??????

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    forney texas
    If you stay at the same place for 10 years, does that mean you have 10 years experience or one years experience 10 times. Feet are made for walking not for growing roots.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Rockhill South Carolina
    In the commercial end of things I feel its best to start out doing a mix of supermarket constrction&service more service though.Then work for a factory service and then to a mechanical contractor and spend about 3 to 5 years @ each then you will be well rounded.I find the market experience to be the most crucial a must have.If you can wrap your head around racks and the stores a/c needs everything else down the line falls right into place.As for me thats what I have done and now I am back with an OEM and thats where I plan to stay for about 30 more years.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    The best service techs stay with the same company and move up the ladder. The only thing that is for sure if you job jump you will be driving that white van forever!

    captinsano how did you get that name?
    The largest room in the world is the room for improvement.

  6. #6
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by legend
    [B]The best service techs stay with the same company and move up the ladder. The only thing that is for sure if you job jump you will be driving that white van forever!

    Move up the ladder? Do you mean the one on top of the truck? I've got 33 years in this biz, I have yet to see 2 companies where this was possible.

    Ever heard this? "You are getting in on the ground floor, Stick with me and help get this going, and i'll make you my partner." Followed later by, "This is my son,(insert rediculous name)he's gonna ride with you for the summer, teach him the right way to do things, one of these days this will all be his."

    I now own my own company and have no desire to get out of the truck. And yes, i jumped a lot....more than most. Each time i did, i got more money/benefits and only once did it bite me, and then i was able to get a better job because of it.

    As a footnote, i'd like to add that i recently hired a friend of mine that had worked for the same company for 29 years. He sprained his ankle on the job, and asked for a couple days off so his ankle could heal. They fired him instead. This was the thanks he got for being loyal.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Orange County N.Y.
    I don't know about jumping around so much. To me that is just a tech that either doesn't know what he wants or he is a poor example of a service tech, or has to get out of town fast. I spent 13 years at my first HVAC employer and I'm just coming up on my 5 years with the second. My first company I started as a helper, by the 1 year mark I was running my own crew. Within 3 years I was making most of the metal for the shop, and went on to service in my 4th. year.

    I think that I was lucky with the customer base my company had. I worked on just about everything except large chillers, only occasionally and nothing over 200 tons. We had a small residential base, delis, fast food, supermarkets, schools, prisons and jails, commercial franchises, department stores, malls, cold storage warehouses, chemical plants, industrial plants, etc., you get the drift.

    This is the type of company that is well worth the time spent learning and honing your skills as a technician.

    Roof Rat

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    I now own my own company and have no desire to get out of the truck. And yes, i jumped a lot....more than most. Each time i did, i got more money/benefits and only once did it bite me, and then i was able to get a better job because of it.

    no8no3 So you are going to advise your employees to move on right? You can't let them stay with you too long knowing how great it is to move jobs all the time. Or is it different now that you are the boss?
    The largest room in the world is the room for improvement.

  9. #9
    Sorry for the late reply, Legend... really busy. But yes if a member of my team gets a better deal and feels it is the best senario for him, why not? This is kind of doubtful since 9 out of 15 are partners in the biz. Unlike other parts of the country, we have more techs than companies in this area. There is no shortage of help as long as the pay is good, and ours rate is in the top three.

    We have only lost one person since forming the company, and he is currently on active duty in Iraq. He still has a job here if so desired, upon his return.

    In short, we pay the money, we give the time off, we are considerate of our people and their families. Our guy's want to come to work, not look for it.

    An adversarial relationship at work is not healthy for either party. I think the personal experiences by most of us in this trade is why we are able to keep our guy's and their level of skill.

    We treat them as we would want to be treated.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Baltimore area
    After getting out of trade school @ 19 my first job was @ a hospital as an hvac tech .I worked there for 2 years. The job was great and lots of exposure to lots of different equiptment and I was making decent $ for my lack of experience . I loved the job BUT , I got an offer from a large supermarket chain in the DC area as an inhouse refrigeration tech making $8.00 an hour more than I was making @ the hospital . It was a no brainer , I took the job . Worked on some huge refrigeration equiptment with the suermarket and was again , great exposure to some very large equiptment . I worked there for 3 years and , the supermarket (Giant , for those that know ) sold out to a foreign company and withen a year they were shutting down the bakery I worked @ . I was union @ the time and could have either transfered to another facality that would slao shortly be shut down or take another job through the union . I decided that I did not like the in house gig @ my age . I was 24 , and was kind of going stir crazy being stuck in one building day in and day out . Plus the union seniority thing was a biatch being the low man on the todem pole . So I decided to go to work for a commercial refrigeration company that a friend of mine worked for .
    I took a $6 an hour pay cut to get into a van but that is what I wanted to do . Withen a year I was back to making the same amount of $ plus more as I was before taking the job . I did that for almost 4 years before being the offered the job that I have now . I work for an OEM now and I love it !! I really do not see myself going anywhere anytime soon . I have no reason to , I LOVE MY JOB !!!

    So to make a long story short , in the 11 years I have been out of trade school , I have been with 4 different jobs , BUT each new job has been a huge step forward in my HVAC/R future . Having 4 jobs in 11 years is not so good , but if you are improving yourself by doing so , why not ??

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    no8no3, Your story is great to hear, I am also a partner in our company. I am now seeing the rewards of sticking it out and not jumping job's.

    Please don't misunderstand me I do not expect any tech to stay in a unfair situation. Being in the trade for 25 years I have seen so many techs take another job for a 50 cent raise or because they have had a tough week. Then you see them back again?

    All jobs have good points and bad points, it will be fun and it will be a b*tch. People need to have a vision of what they want and get them self noticed, not from working hard and smart for weeks or months but rather for years at a time at a constaint level above there peers.

    I worked with this company for six years doing everything and anything they asked, plus I also was improving the process by teaching and sharing my knowledge with every one. It wasn't always easy and I to was being recruited by competitors.

    One day an out of the blue i was called by the owner to talk about the company expanding. I was given the job and part ownership to start up the new service department.

    This will never happen to any one that is labled a job jumper.

    The largest room in the world is the room for improvement.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Pacific Time Zone
    legend - good point. I worked for a company while I was in college as an internship. The owner was a jerk and after I met him I knew I wouldn't stay there. Before I graduated I had another job with the company I am with now. Been there 8 plus years now. About my 4th year in the feild I knew I wanted to move up the ladder faster so I started back to school (mech. engineering) and worked part time - would take numerous on calls, like every other or every third week, and basically became a floater for guys that needed help. Granted it is a commercial service company that works on basically everything to do with HVAC and a bit of refrigeration, so there is a lot of learning in the field. Got a year and a half of schooling done before my daughter was born and after she was born had to go back full time. Did a couple of night classes still but pretty much put the engineering degree on hold. Our controls engineer at our company left without notice and I was given her job. If it wasn't for the time with the company and showing them my desire to continue to learn and move forward I wouldn't have got the job. One thing I always will keep in my mind is "Do I want to make that guy money?" If I say no to that question then I need to find a new job. So far I've been able to answer yes to that question where I am at as I feel the owner is a good guy that wants to be fair.
    "How it can be considered "Open" is beyond me. Calling it "voyeur-ed" would be more accurate." pka LeroyMac, SkyIsBlue, fka Freddy-B, Mongo, IndyBlue
    BIG Government = More Dependents
    "Any 'standard' would be great if it didn't get bastardised by corporate self interest." MatrixTransform - not my website.
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  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Slacking off right now
    I have worked for a few companies for as short as six weeks to as long as 15 years - Lifes too short to work in a position you really hate

    In that time I have learned many things The most important thing are:

    always look out for your self - no one else will
    Always train for your self first the company second.
    Always keep an eye open on your local job market you never know when you may need to make a move.
    Always do a good job even if its your last day there.
    Always try to leave on good terms you just never know.
    Always enjoy your job if it reaches a point where you are not -then it may be time to seek a new job - The best tool bags on the market - The offical tool bag of choice by techs everywhere

    Arguing with some people is like wrestling a pig - eventually you realise the pig actually enjoys it

    Gonads serve a useful purpose but are no substitute for brains

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