5 Questions with 24/7 Electric

Ask a trades professional

If you search for ‘Calgary Electrician’ on Google, you will notice 24/7 Electric comes up at the top of the list. This visibility illustrates the effort the company puts into marketing its services. Shane Walton, Red Seal Master Electrician and co-owner, credits the company’s high ranking to the marketing skill set of his partner, Stacy Walton. Together, Shane and Stacy have built their business into an award winning operation. Just last year, the company won the Business Ethics Award from the Better Business Bureau and the HomeStars Best of 2014 Award.

As part of Tradeslife’s new 5 Questions Q&A series, Shane Walton provides some excellent insight into what it takes to get a great trades job.

Tradespeople of Calgary

Shane Walton, co-owner of 24/7 Electric says he is surprised by how much demand there is for electricians even in a down economy.

1. What personal qualities are needed to be a successful tradesperson?
The top personal qualities an individual would need to be strong in any trade is – a strong work ethic, being able to collaborate with others, and the ability to bring an architects’ vision to reality. As most things rarely go to plan, having a strong ability to be adaptable and resourceful is also a necessary asset. A successful tradesperson always finds a way to make things work while adhering to their trades’ code requirements.

Trades in Calgary

The company now has three fully outfitted commercial vehicles which are all the same eye-catching yellow.

2. What do you think is the biggest misconception the general public has about tradespeople?
Definitely the level of education most tradespeople have.  Almost every Red Seal trade requires technical training and years of hands on experience. As a Master Electrician in Alberta, I took my masters course with SAIT. Among us were Electrical Engineers also completing their education. The most common comments from the engineers were, “we did not realize the level of knowledge or education a Journeyman needed to have.” They must have assumed that level of knowledge was reserved solely for them.  An Electrical system is complicated and can be as sophisticated as an automated offshore drilling rig or as simple as a lighting circuit in a home. Having the ability to diagnose an electrical system failure is not as simple as watching a 10 minute YouTube video. There is more to consider, from dealing with years of handyman renovations or electrical code interpretations; success comes from years of experience and technical education.

3. What advice do you have for finding a great job as a tradesperson?
Find a company that fits your personality and strengths. As an electrician my strong suits are problem solving and I am a people person. The work I have enjoyed the most is service work versus a new construction atmosphere. In a residential service setting I get to work with people while solving their electrical issues.  I also have the opportunity to provide them with options on improving their electrical system or advising them on hazards and code violations. Whereas, there are many other individuals I know that like to create and build. For them, they would do far better in a new construction atmosphere.

Trades in Canada

Walton says his company has grown steadily since he and his partner, Stacy, rebranded less than 2 years ago.

4. When faced with two equally qualified candidates (potential employees) how do you determine whom to hire?
It will always come down to attitude and work ethic. I would rather someone with a positive outlook than a naysayer. I can teach skills to someone with a positive attitude and I can educate someone willing to learn, but I believe a good work ethic comes from inside a person and you just can’t teach that.  There is also a level of chemistry to consider when thinking about who to bring into your team. You have to feel good about them.

5. What specific actions can a tradesperson take to continually improve his or her skills?Never stop learning. Continue education with courses or training seminars, not just related to your trade. Seeking out education that broadens one’s abilities creates more opportunities. Taking a course in business or a seminar in customer service makes a person diversified and more desirable as a potential candidate. They should be willing to experience new things and adapt and learn. This will improve their skill set and make them better in their trade.

Tradeslife would like to thank Shane and Stacy Walton for sharing their insight and knowledge with our readers.

Stay tuned for our next 5 Questions article.

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