Electricians perform a wide variety of tasks, including wiring homes or offices, replacing old electrical systems, and maintaining existing systems. They’re also called upon for inspections, repairs, and updates. It can be busy, exciting, and rewarding work. The industry is also growing faster than the national average1 and the Department of Labor predicts that nationally there will be more than 74,000 new electrician jobs by 2028 for qualified workers.
But if you want to enter the field, there are some useful skills that will help you be successful in this growing industry. These include:
- Technical ability
- Communication skills
- Business know-how
- Attention to detail
- And more
Six Must-Have Electrician Skills
If you think you want to become an electrician, here are the skills that you should develop to help you stand out:
- Technical competence – You’ll need a solid understanding of math as well as critical thinking skills. But that doesn’t mean you need to master calculus. Basic math and some algebra should get you by. You’ll need a full grasp of the fundamentals of electricity, electrical code, and safety. And you’ll need to know how to wire and connect circuitry, and how to work on motors, transformers, generators, and the electronic systems in mechanical tools.
- Problem-solving capability – Do you enjoy taking things apart and figuring out how to put them back together? That innate curiosity means a career as an electrician may be a great fit for you. Not every task is clear cut for electricians. Many projects require you to understand complex electrical processes and find ways to fix them when they are broken. Being able to problem solve and think outside the box will be important to your success.
- Communication skills – Although many of your tasks will be technical, you also need to be a good communicator. Because you often need to explain complex electric issues to people who have no background in technical things, you’ll need to translate for them. Turn all that electrical knowledge you possess into something they can understand.
- Business know-how – Basic business capabilities like time management and customer service will help you build your client list. Whether you work for a company or as an independent contractor, these skills can set you apart from others in the industry. Completing jobs on time and being respectful with customers will help you create a reputation for reliability.
- Attention to detail – Working with electricity can sometimes be hazardous. That’s why you need to pay close attention to details. A detail-orientated approach will also help you stay safe on the job. Understanding safety procedures and being cautious are two important skills to have.
- Physical stamina – You’ll do a lot of standing, crouching, bending, climbing stairs, and lifting heavy items. While you don’t need to be an Olympic athlete to be an electrician, you will need to be ready to take on an active job.
To be successful, you must showcase these electrician skills. But you’ll also need formal training and an apprenticeship to work in most states. Want to get started? Check out the electrician training programs at Porter and Chester Institute. Offered in Connecticut and Massachusetts, the program can be completed in as little as 12 months.