The construction industry in BC and Alberta is experiencing an extreme pattern of growth and achievement. This is translating into a broad range of current job openings in the trades career with tremendous room for advancement within distinct, long-term career paths, which is obviously alluring to young workers.
For new hires to work effectively, it’s important that they are willing to learn as opportunities are constantly changing. Plus, with tons of openings, the Baby Boomers will soon retire from the trades industry, this trend will get more obvious. There are different basic skills that all young construction workers need to learn prior to working on a job site.
Learn to be an Effective Laborer
General construction labor is part of just about any job on a construction work site. Even if you’re a senior level specialist, sometimes you’ll still have to do labor work. To be an effective and valuable laborer is relatively easy, but it does involve checking one’s ego at the door. It even helps to adopt a team-like mentality. Sometimes to finish a job, almost everyone has to work outside their job descriptions and be flexible.
Doing this type of work well and effectively, at any point during your career, proves your work ethic to employers. Construction companies often promote from within to have leadership positions to filled. Identifying field workers who demonstrate excellent attention to detail, and willingness to do what it takes to finish the job.
Learn to be a Safety Ambassador
Being aware of safety rules and regulations is another great skill to have at any work site. Safety knowledge is always appreciated by employers because it helps prevent accidents, and more generally, lawsuits. All employers appreciate employees with safety knowledge and skill. Simply being familiar with local, provincial, and federal safety laws and regulations make you an asset for the employer. It means they don’t have to be as vigilant because they know they have another set of eyes and ears. If interested, you can pursue a degree in safety management or occupational safety and health, where possibilities are endless.
Learn to be a Project Manager
Project management is a simple skill but is often overlooked and ignored by employees below management level. This shouldn’t be the case! Although you may not be in charge of contract management, vendor negotiations, scheduling, or anything along those lines. Project management can still be a valuable skill. Having the ability to manage your day to increase your productivity can be the difference between a promotion and layoff.
For young workers or those who are considering capitalizing on the need for skilled workers in the construction industry, it’s critical you learn the above skills, even if they’re outside of your job description. The education needed to learn the above isn’t huge, but the impact can be!
Steel Toe Jobs is Canada’s First Careers based Community for the Construction industry.