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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Richmond, VA
    Posts
    429

    Career switcher looking for guidance!

    Hey everyone!

    I'm seeking to get started in the HVAC trade this fall by taking some courses at my local community college. Two years ago, I graduated with a four-year degree and I struggled to find work for a year after graduation. After 85 applications and 5 interviews, I finally landed a job. That excitement quickly faded as I learned that between the boring monotony of working in an office with nothing to show for it except a measly paycheck, I struggled to find meaning in what I was doing. So I decided to go back to school and learn a trade.

    HVAC seems like an exciting career choice because there are so many settings you can work in and each day looks different from the next. I love using my hands and my brain to work hard. I always find myself looking for an excuse to break out my toolbox around the house! I also want to do something where I feel like I'm a crucial part of my community, but not in the open about it.

    I hope I can find answers here when needed and hopefully in time provide help too!

    -----

    If anyone can help, I would like to know if I should start looking for a job as helper somewhere while I take classes to earn my certification. What kind of work/earnings should I expect? Demand is fairly strong in my area.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    12,195
    I would make up a short concise one-page resume, and a short, to the point, cover letter. Make the heading with your name and phone number and email address on it large, obvious, and easy to find. In fact; what I might do is to make the resume in the shape and layout of an 8 1/2 by 11 service ticket. With my name and so forth set up as the 'company' name/heading.

    Do not mail them to anyone.

    Then I would find the address of all the companies in your area and I would drive around to each one to present myself, state my purpose, and ask to speak to someone about my interest.

    Before going there I would fold and envelope a resume and cover letter t keep in my pocket. I would not walk in with it in my hand. If you end up needing it you have it. And if no amount of persistence will get you someone to talk to then - I would ask when I could either wait to, or come back to, speak to someone. Then wait or come back at the appointed time. If you come back - come back 1/2 hour early for the appointment. Only if there was never going to be anyone to speak to would I leave the resume and cover letter.

    When you get through them all - start over again: show up, be your confident, smiling, and charming best. Show up often and keep asking. Resumes show up in the mail like sales circulars and often are given about as much attention. A polite, well groomed, punctual, and enthusiastic man - not so much . . . and will be much harder to ignore. You want them to know your face and you name by the time you leave. Always ask for the job. If it is not forthcoming ask for their assurance that they will call you as soon as there is anything available. Shake his hand and look into his eyes while you ask if you can count on him. And don't forget to say: Thanks for any opportunity you can provide me - I'll do everything possible not to let you down sir.

    PHM
    ------



    Quote Originally Posted by CircusEnvy View Post
    Hey everyone!

    I'm seeking to get started in the HVAC trade this fall by taking some courses at my local community college. Two years ago, I graduated with a four-year degree and I struggled to find work for a year after graduation. After 85 applications and 5 interviews, I finally landed a job. That excitement quickly faded as I learned that between the boring monotony of working in an office with nothing to show for it except a measly paycheck, I struggled to find meaning in what I was doing. So I decided to go back to school and learn a trade.

    HVAC seems like an exciting career choice because there are so many settings you can work in and each day looks different from the next. I love using my hands and my brain to work hard. I always find myself looking for an excuse to break out my toolbox around the house! I also want to do something where I feel like I'm a crucial part of my community, but not in the open about it.

    I hope I can find answers here when needed and hopefully in time provide help too!

    -----

    If anyone can help, I would like to know if I should start looking for a job as helper somewhere while I take classes to earn my certification. What kind of work/earnings should I expect? Demand is fairly strong in my area.
    PHM
    --------
    The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    NORTHERN
    Posts
    989
    phm do mean PHD !

    like I meant that the last time.

    and CE:

    some places even test you on the spot w/out an appointment if ya say things as what you know enough (and then must know) and that ability to also go out in the mean time and see if as a helper you can tag along a day or two may be a double edged sword to losing one and then gaining notice with another.
    Like people, a shouting over micro-managing boss can be a truck load of good learnin, or the quiet non-tech boss can put you with another quiet type tech that works well in groups and not given to fits of rage- too have info of value...

    Your #1 is that YOU LIKE TO WORK !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    and that would make any boss on occaision (with his brain in gear) interview you on projects and calls together seeing if you can work fundamentals...
    lik (of fishin') to be a potential fisherperson on your own catching the solutions needed.
    Or developing use of your forsight for immediately prctical bests for a customer vs urgently impractical but truly long term advantages of service/parts extras a customer may in the long run be stretching fo rfinancially at the moment but can be shown the value in years to come as in / on helps to meet needed services down the road.

    I do not like building much but like to 'fly' so much I build to fly, efficiently more than to take a crash, like a model plane approach to a performance. However but within HVAC with guaranteed performance agreements to cover having to explain all the design at once in the build of a contract installation for closing a sale of more planned implementation than spelling out too much info to possibly be just bid against. That had to be learned to protect a company and my own then and later. I want work to an improvement too as you valuable state you do !

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