Industrial Workers Hardhat

This recent article, High-Paying Trade Jobs Sit Empty, While High School Grads Line Up For University, captures one of life’s biggest decisions – what career path to choose.

Why not take a broader view?

The career path a person chooses is just that: a path they are going down which may be straight and unchanged their entire career, or it may have a few curves or sharp turns along the way.

Many Lee Group clients are hiring in what you’d consider trade positions, but that’s not always where the individuals we place in those positions stay for their entire career. We’ve placed individuals who’ve gone from temporary to permanent positions and then move on to lead departments for their employer in jobs that often require a four-year college degree.

The important point is, you must start somewhere – whether that’s entering the workforce right out of high school, after attending a technical college or trade school, or after attending a four-year university program. But that doesn’t need to be where you stop. You should always seek to further your education and training in your chosen field or in a new vocation you’ve decided to move into.

Why stop there?

There are always ways to add skills and education to your resume. Here are a few things to consider as you search the opportunity to expand your knowledge and capabilities.

  • You can have the best of both worlds. Nothing says that you can’t get a two- or four-year college degree while you’re working or after attending a trade school. In fact, if you want to start your own business, it’s wise to at least take some business classes or get a degree. Attending school while working full time is not an easy path, but if you’re motivated and have a goal in mind, you’ll find the time and graduate before you know it.

Conversely, attending a trade school after going to university or retiring (from your first career), is a great way to sharpen your skills in an area you plan to work in or start a business. For example, computer science graduates could gain out-of-the-classroom, hands-on experience at a trade school or training course. Individuals who have left their first career but want to continue working can start a second career in the trades.

  • Investigate seminars and the training your employer offers. Many career fields have associations or professional organizations that offer certifications, courses or seminars that continue education and help keep individuals’ skills and knowledge current as that career field advances with new technology or new methods and approaches. A great example of this is Gianna Bowers, a member of our Lee Group staff, who earned a certification from the American Staffing Association.

In-house training is often available in the form of online education sessions or hands-on training in other areas of the business or manufacturing line. Taking advantage of employer-provided education and training shows your commitment to the business, you desire to expand your knowledge and your overall mind-set, and how you think about work and your career.

  • In any scenario, if you’re already working, check your benefits! Many employers will reimburse for college tuition or pay for approved training courses. Benefits like this can reduce or remove the cost of continuing education. What a tremendous opportunity to expand your skills and knowledge!

The Lee Group matches the best employers with the best employees. For more information, contact any of us here at The Lee Group.

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