Episode Description

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This week, we’re excited to bring George Arrants, Vice President, ASE Education Foundation, onto the podcast. We cover a variety of topics, including: Why students are losing interest in the industry, the struggles of being a new technician, the importance of a successful mentorship program, and much more!

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Episode Highlights

Why Students are Losing Interest in the Industry

  • 42% of students entering the industry leave the industry within the first two years.
  • If students get involved in the industry early, they are more likely to stay in the industry long-term.
  • We’re not lacking interest in the industry. The loyalty is there, but shops need to show they’re committed to entry-level techs.
  • 30% of technicians said the reason they took one automotive course and didn’t decide to take the next level course is because they didn’t see a defined career path in the industry.

Struggles of the Industry

  • Not all shops want to hire an entry-level technician due to the lack of skills and training that comes with it.
  • Technicians aren’t getting the proper training/support they need when starting in the industry — leaving them feeling lost and eventually losing interest in the industry.
  • Employee retention is huge. The cost to constantly hire new employees is way more expensive than keeping the ones you have.
  • The industry needs to remove the mentality that everyone is replaceable and if it doesn’t work out then you just hire someone new.
  • It’s important to let technicians work and learn at a pace that allows them to be successful.
  • As a manager, if you expect 100% from your technicians, then you have to give 100% back.

“If you [shops] actually knew what it costs to hire a technician, they’d take a completely different view.”

George Arrants, Vice President, ASE Education Foundation 

How to Run a Successful Mentorship Program

  • If you’re going to have a mentorship program, make sure mentors are being compensated for the job they’re doing.
  • Some people have the skills to be a good leader, but are less interested in raising their hand. However, if they see someone else doing it they’ll believe they can do it too.
  • Your best technician won’t necessarily be your best mentor. You want someone who has people skills and has been in the industry for a while.
  • Recognize the hard work your mentors are doing for technicians and what they are doing for your shop.
  • The main goal of a mentor should be to build confidence in the young technicians that are new to the industry.

 “It’s 4:30 a Friday afternoon and one of your best customers, Ms. Smith, pulls in… Who are you going to ask to stay? That’s probably the person you want to be your mentor.”

George Arrants, Vice President, ASE Education Foundation

Generational Differences Within the Industry

  • Baby boomers live to work, while millennials work to live.
  • Millennials want more than just a paycheck from their job — they need fulfillment.
  • Every technician learns at a different rate in a different way, and it’s important to recognize that.
  • Millennials are looking for a job where they can be a part of a family and be a part of something bigger.

“We, as baby boomers, live to work, and we always have. This generation works to live and maybe they got it right — it’s that balance.”

George Arrants, Vice President, ASE Education Foundation

Exposing Students to the Skilled Trades Early

Show Notes


About Our Host:

Jay Goninen
Co- Founder & President, WrenchWay
jayg@wrenchway.com | 608.716.2122

About Our Guest:

George Arrants
Vice President, ASE Education Foundation

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