Episode 14: The Top Three Things They Don't Teach You in Trade School

December 16, 2020 10:58 am


Trade schools are a great way to learn to start your machining career, but some things can only be learned in the field. In this episode, Ian talks about some fundamental skills you’ll never learn in school.

Whether you are an apprentice on the floor, whether you’ve been a machinist for a few years, whether you’ve been on the management side, or where you are still taking classes at a college, mastering the following skills will help you take your career to next level.

The first thing you’ll never learn in trade school is urgency. Having an innate sense of urgency is going to highly influence the way you do your job, your hourly rate, and, bottom line, the profitability of your machine shop.

The second skill that is not typically taught in trade school (but it should) is negotiation. Knowing how to negotiate properly is critical in the manufacturing business (or any business) as it allows you to be more successful, avoid unwanted situations, and keep a good relationship with people around you.

Last but not least, one of the most critical, yet untaught, skills in the machining trade is troubleshooting. The ability to troubleshoot a problem, whether it’s trying to figure out why a program is not working correctly or why parts are not coming out right, is fundamental and will determine whether you’ll be successful or not in this trade.

Do you agree with Ian? What are the things you think trade schools should be teaching more to their students? Share your experience and thoughts in the comments! Stay tuned for more machining videos!


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  • fusker says:

    I agree, totally.
    Trouble is, it takes a lot of time for most of us to understand these problems. And the schools are mostly focused on the bare, technical stuff.

  • I agree with Ian, but he left one thing out. Trade schools dont teach you how to work. And give a damn cant be taught. You either have it or you dont

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