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What makes construction a good job and how did you find out that it was the career path you wanted?

what about construction did u find the best?

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Subject: Career question for you

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John’s Answer

I love Ash's answer and only provide mine as comic relief.

My career path came about as a result of my stellar high school grades, all F’s. I was a terrible student figuring I already knew where I was headed as a Automobile Mechanic. I was a child of the 60’s living in a small steel town in the Midwest, with the Vietnam War ongoing. With the help of a judge (who gave me a choice of the military or else), all my high school teachers (who voted to raise my F’s to D’s if I promised not to return), and my Dad I ended up in the US Navy where I found myself, so to speak. After a 21 year career rising to an E-8 MMCS/ss I tretired and looked around. While on active duty I had developed a pretty good secondary job working with OSHA safety (a government program that started during my career).

So I assessed my skills and took safety positions in the commercial/industrial construction on DOD contracts as well as in Maritime Ship Repair.

I'd guess you can say I tripped into my construction career. As for why I joined the Navy; well in my senior year in HS I took a part-time position with a local plumping company who, I found out later, specialized in septic repairs. Contrary to what TV now shows, back then the laborer with hip boots and shovel would go out in the flooded drain filed and locate the septic and drain lines. I did this for three months and joined the Navy on 30 May; only to find myself diving a full ship-board septic tank that had a broken hull valve operator. No there is no dive suit suitable for this work so I decided to go naked into the tank and run into the shower when done. Ok OK stop laughing; you too Ash....

Good luck, for it is your life and there are so many occupations available out there that do not require a college degree. Just a little bit of research and experience.
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Alberto’s Answer

Hey Colby! As a student of Civil Engineering, I first stepped into the professional world as a Construction Project Manager for a Custom Home Builder. It was then that I discovered my passion for the dynamic and hands-on nature of the construction industry, rather than the more theoretical side of engineering. I did venture into a Civil Engineering internship at one point, but it only solidified my preference for construction. The thought of being confined to a desk didn't appeal to me.

Working in construction offers a refreshing change of scenery. You get to engage with diverse clients, work in various locations, and handle projects of different sizes and specifications. Each project brings its unique set of challenges, rewards, and issues, ensuring there's never a dull moment. Plus, the constant shift between indoor and outdoor settings keeps you active and on your toes.

What's more, while the fundamental principles and overall structure might stay the same, no two construction projects are identical. This diversity is what keeps the job exciting and stimulating. So, if you're someone who thrives on variety and challenge, the construction industry could be a perfect fit for you!
Thank you comment icon Thank you! Colby
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Maxwell’s Answer

Construction brings together different components to create a unique product. That is fascinating part for me, the ability to create someone's ideas or designs into a 3 dimensional product that is what I enjoy about Construction. However you will meet different people from different backgrounds that can make your experience good or bad. That can be said about alot of professions as well.
There is also the long hours that come with the nature of the job you either enjoy it or not. If you love solving real-life puzzles then Construction will challenge you and if you enjoy the challenges and sustain the job demands then you will find Construction as a good path.
Also there are numerous roles in construction, there are Construction engineers, Estimator, superintendent, project managers on the contractors side. Architects, electrical, plumbing, mechanical and civil engineers, low voltage consultants, that design what will be constructed. Decide what you love and determine your path in construction.
Thank you comment icon Thank you for the advice, Maxwell. Colby
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Robert’s Answer

Colby,

Construction pays well but it is very physical as I'm guessing you know.

I have always loved working with my hands and accomplishing things. I'm a very visual learner rather than a book smart type of guy. I love working with wood and have always built things since the 6th grade when I was in a shop class and built a well pump lamp. (which I still have on my desk and it still works). I have my own company now for 20+ years because I didn't like to have bosses and put up with egos or stupidity. I prefer to do residential work where I can take pride in my work rather than doing commercial work where it's get it done but don't really need to give 100%. (at least from my experience).

If you are not in a trade school, I would suggest you go and watch activity at a job site (if it's a bigger company you would like to work for) or see if you can get an apprenticeship with a residential company. Maybe you want to try and get a job as a laborer and watch other journeymen work and ask questions when appropriate to do so. You can watch You Tube videos (from professional companies not DIY'ers) on just about any area in carpentry from siding, windows, roofing, framing, cabinet installation and/or fabrication all the way to even just estimating jobs which require training on software.

Good luck and I hope this helps!

Bob K.
Thank you comment icon Thanks for putting in the time to write this response, and that cool that the lamp still works. Colby
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Ash’s Answer

Believe it or not, it was pure luck that led me to my calling. I took a chance, and it turned out to be something I truly enjoy. There's a certain satisfaction in having a tangible result to show for my hard work every day.

I've observed colleagues who clearly aren't happy with their jobs. It's hard to know whether you'll enjoy a particular line of work unless you roll up your sleeves and give it a try.

For those who are uncertain, especially the younger ones, I usually suggest starting as a laborer. This way, you get to be around various trades and see what they entail. In Minnesota, for instance, we have a "helper" program. It's a paid opportunity to assist with tasks like hauling materials and digging holes for a year. But the real perk is that you get to work alongside licensed plumbers. If you find the work intriguing, it could be a stepping stone towards getting accepted into the union.

I understand that breaking into the trades can seem daunting. But remember, no one stepped onto their first job site with all the knowledge they needed. If you find that a certain job isn't for you, there's no shame in quitting and seeking something else that might suit you better.

So, why not give it a shot? Be honest with yourself throughout the process. I can tell you from personal experience that I love what I do, and I earn a good income, even compared to some of my friends who went to college.

And the cherry on top? No student loans to pay off.
Thank you comment icon You rock! This advice is very helpful. Colby
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Mack’s Answer

As most everyone else here it was never my chosen path. I wanted to build race cars. So I went to school for advanced automotive design and engineering. Really I was just a college level mechanic. I ended up at a custom shop. Built some vehicles that I took to SEMA. However the company I was working for had a separate division doing window films and antigraffiti programs. They ended up moving to Mexico and closing the Auto side down. I was looking for something that was more inline with what I really wanted to do. Build race cars. My neighbor and myself were hanging out one day and he asked how much were they paying you. It varied based on what I was working for j but I kinda had a rough average. I was reading a listing about a dealership hiring. 14$ a hour…. He was like are you serious… sadly yes. He tells me he will pay me 250$ a day to ride in his work van with him everyday and I didn’t have to do a single thing. He wanted access to the carpool lane! He was a plumber. After about a month of cruising around and just observing it started to interest me. A lot of problem identification and solving. I asked how much money he was bringing in. He laughed and says to me way more then you ever did. That wasn’t the answer I was looking for. 3 months in and I’m plumbing with him every day. We did tons of slab leaks, remodels at first. Roughing in here and there on customs. He told me something that stuck with me forever one day. He said everyone underestimates the plumbing trade. Says we are turd herders and laugh. He said we have to find one third of the jobs any other trade out here does to stay working. That hit me instantly. He was right. We start with underground plumbing. The slab gets poured. Concrete guys are gone and looking for another job. The framers and us are back and we are doing too out. Framers are gone and on another job. We are still there the same job. Drywallers and painters come in and we are setting finish. Not being brought up in the trades it all clicked he was right. Plumbers have to find one third the jobs to keep working. That’s new construction mind you. We stayed away from the turd herding side people will put off getting there house painted, roof redone, carpet replaced. Let their water not be hot or they have a astronomical water bill every month. Water pouring through their ceiling and they are on the phone. They want it fixed and right that second! We got rich from emergency call outs! We preferred it really. Cooler in the late afternoon and evenings. I ended up going to a few trade shows and ended buying a pipe reinstatement robot rig. Then got into the other side of doing the liners as well. The first job I landed paid my investment off entirely. We really were the go to custom home new construction guys though and were so in demand that we could just about name any price. We took pride in our work. Always were learning and improving. We were highly knowledgeable. We showed up early and left late. ALWAYS. It’s funny Monday comes around and half the job site would be sick… I never did that. Being reliable alone had me making great money. Being reliable, fast, clean and talented we ran a three county radius in SoCal! Never once have I paid a dollar for advertising or posted my number anywhere. Yet my phone would ring endlessly. I ended up on a TV show on NBC right after The Voice called American Dream Buildiers. I sold my half of the company at the peak. I’ve been flipping homes solo since . I love the entire process of building/remodeling homes. Except Drywall…. Screw that skill set. I am remodeling a mountain cabin that I live at currently. My 24th flip and my 4th personal home. I do a wide range of side work because I enjoy working and I’m really bad at budgeting my money. More so because I am well off enough that I can say no to everyone everyday. I take interesting jobs. Jobs everyone before me failed at or said could t be done. Usually multiple different companies. That’s what excites me these days. Keeps me on my toes and interested. If I could give anyone coming up in the trades today some advice, it’s easy! Show up, work hard, find the best builders around you, do the petty work to get your foot in the door with some Craftsmen. Soak it all up. Ask intelligent questions when there is unrushed time. When you get home study! Learn the building code. Treat your job like it’s a art project. Go to the trades shows. Do jobs for friends and family and knock it out of the park. Go above and beyond. You will either be a successful business owner before you know it or a well regarded employee making great money quickly. Too many guys want to complain and party and know everything ever day one. All you gotta do is be better then that and you will excel. You make your reality no matter what. Have patience and respect. Keep the work truck and yourself looking proper. Keep your tools clean and organized. EVERYONE will notice that matters. Good luck.
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Olatunde’s Answer

Great question -
Construction has so many different arms, you could be on the owner's side as a representative or a contractor, you could be commercial or residential, you could be technical or labor intensive, either way it's the sum of all the parts. I enjoyed construction for 2 main reasons:
1. Met so many amazing people, learnt that being smart is not having a degree but being open-minded and courageous enough to want to contribute to building something.
2. Hard work pays off. You work hard you get paid - if you are hourly, it typically comes in O.T, and if you are salaried a year-end bonus, but either way hard work literally pays.

If you go into construction or anything to be honest, go into it with the heart of a child - curious, excited, brave and fun seeking - in all my years of experience, I have found that this is the best way to truly succeed in any industry.
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much! Colby
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Levi’s Answer

Enjoy the liberty of managing your own timetable,
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Ximena’s Answer

new york city and the surrounding boroughs, we make $55/hour plus our quarterly vacation fund because we dont get PTO or sick pay. so for every hour we work we get an additional $8 per hour and the total hours worked in 3 months is sent to us. the $8 is once you finish apprenticeship and during an apprentice, we get $3 per hour for our vacation. that same amount goes into an annuity.
example: 40 hours x $8 x 4 weeks x 3 months =$3840 check every 3 months
if you work less, then the check is less. this example is if you have already finished your 4 year apprenticeship and are now a journey level carpenter
now do the math for an apprentice at $3 per hour .
another benefit is we don't pay for medical, dental, optical. we are giving $200 for eyeglasses if you need them. as long we you worked 240 hours, then the health benefits kick in.
then threes the annuity, the same amount of vacation pay we get every three months goes into an annuity. we save that for our retirement age.
now, pension: 860 hours worked equals 1 credit, and you need 5 credits to be vested. what they council does is they total your salary based on the hours worked annual and they give you 1%. example: if you worked 1600 in one year, you have earned one credit and if you are a journey level then multiple $55 per hour x 1600 = $88000 annual salary, plus your vacation pay $15,360 giving you a total of $95360 annual salary. You will receive $953 (approximately) for that one credit. you will need to accrue 5 credits to be vested or if you leave then you lose all of it.
so hypothetically speaking, if you work the consistent 1600 hours, like I did with OT, then multiple $953 x 5 credits = $4765 (approximately) is what you will get as your pension when you reach 66. and don't forget social security pension too.
this is why union jobs are a benefit for those who don't want college and want a financial secure retirement.
hope i answered you question and then some. reach out if you have more questions, happy to help
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