Starting a new apprenticeship can be an exciting experience; you likely feel pretty knowledgeable and ready to get the job done by the time you get to work. However, starting something new can also be fairly intimidating. The fear of doing something incorrectly can make everything feel like too much. Any green apprentice knows the feeling of the first day on the job or the first time completing a new task. Keep in mind that the nerves are expected; the journey to becoming a licensed contractor comes with learning curves and many growth opportunities. Here are four tips to help you along the way to be successful as a green apprentice.
Have a good attitude
Being in a new environment can come with a lot of stress. When it comes to contractors, the feeling can become overwhelming due to the high risk on the job. Messing up someone's plumbing or electrical system could lead to severe consequences. It can be easy to let frustration take over in these situations. However, keeping a good attitude will prove to be a great advantage. You will be much less likely to receive sympathy from your employer or mentor if you talk back, do not have an open mind, or are closed off from any criticism.
As an apprentice, you are there to learn. Contractors lose money, time, and even clients when they fail to produce great results. Working as an apprentice, one of your primary goals should be not to make your job more complicated than it has to be. Initially, you might think this means not bothering them when you feel unsure what to do. Doing a task incorrectly will be a more significant burden for you, your supervisor, and the client. So if you find yourself in a position where you feel some doubt creeping in, make sure to get the clarity you need. You will much rather ask and get the job done right the first time than mess everything up and have someone fix your mistakes.
Be willing to learn
Apprenticeships can offer many opportunities to learn and grow the trades. If all goes well, you will eventually get to the point where you feel pretty confident in your abilities. This new knowledge is excellent; however, keeping in mind that there is always room for improvement is essential if you want to succeed. Being willing to learn and listening to your mentor will allow you to improve exponentially, making you a much better contractor later on.
Being mentally present
A long day at work can be challenging to handle at any job. It can be very easy to get distracted, especially when work slows down or is repetitive. Drifting off, being on your phone, and not knowing what's going on will only increase the likelihood that something will go wrong and have serious consequences for both you and your employer. Making an effort to be mentally present, listen carefully, and get your tasks done correctly will make your job a much more enjoyable experience.