Modern Tire Dealer

FEB 2019

Magazine for the professional tire industry

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23 w w w . M o d e r n T i r e D e a l e r . c o m Introducing Giti Ultra Wide Base Long Haul Tires It's all about that base. GDL633 FS Ultra Wide Drive 445/50R22.5 GTL933 FS Ultra Wide Trailer 445/50R22.5 To find out more, contact Visit us in Atlanta, GA March 18-21 — Booth #2861 --------- used to be. Parents and students are still seeing it in that old image." 3. Hidden potential. e transporta- tion and automotive industries combined have done a poor job of highlighting the opportunities in the field. Mix in a huge demand for technicians, and there's plenty of room to grow. "I have a friend who says we don't have 2. Image problem. Blame it on the grease monkey. Parents still imagine old shops and messy mechanics, even though the modern industry revolves around technology and a good retail experience. "You go into modern shops, and it's so different from even 10 years ago. I wouldn't say it's a laboratory white coat job, but it's much cleaner and more high tech than it "We plan on growing our own techni- cians from within our own company, from entry-level positions already on the payroll who want to become technicians," Jensen says. "We'll put them through our schooling and hopefully build a pipeline that way. We'll have our own curriculum. Students will be trained with our trainer and will move from training to stores where they can become technicians." Jensen calls it "a large investment," and says this is the first time the company will employ a full-time trainer. But he also consid- ers these steps a necessity. He's competing against new car dealers and every other automotive shop for employees. "We're all fighting for the same technicians." HOW DID WE GET HERE? Greg Settle knows more owners need to take initiative like Jensen. Settle started working as a technician in the 1970s and spent 20 years working for Mercedes-Benz dealer- ships before joining the corporate ranks. In 1991 he draed a proposal for a technician training program. Why? "Because we had a technician shortage. As a service manager I couldn't find good young applicants. at was decades ago. Fast forward to today and we still have a technician shortage." And Settle is still working to address the issue as director of national initiatives for the Tech Force Foundation, a nonprofit organization that works to educate students on the possibilities of life as a professional technician. e U.S. didn't wake up one day with thousands of fewer technicians on the job than the day before. Settle points to five contributors to the cause. 1. College for all. For generations parents, wanting their children to be more successful than they were, helped spread the message that a college education was the best path to a successful career. A college degree isn't the only option, however. "If you talk to people in other skilled trades, all of those trades have exactly the same issue. Nobody is going into those fields anymore, and why not? Because they've been told and their parents have been told you've got to go to college." Settle says only half of the nation's jobs need that degree. (A study by Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce says through 2020, about one-third of jobs (35%) will require at least a bachelor's degree.)

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