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Thread: Hey all.

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    Junior Member Madcow101's Avatar
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    Default Hey all.

    New hire at USIC in Houston Texas. I do my first day of trainning tomorrow. Been looking foward to it for a long while. I come from a construction backround, my primary trade is painter, but I'm burnt out on that.Been reading here for about three weeks before I applied to get a sense of the work paying particular attention to the gripes. Read up on them at ibdeed.Com as well. theCablevine has been the most useful. Did the ride along and was lucky enough to do that on a day that was going pretty rough for the located on his first ticket and then got to go with him and another tech to help two new guys who were having some issues. Learned allot about the work that day.Seems pretty streight foward. Pay attention more then talk, ask questions, don't get wrapped up in drama with contractors and just do your work. I'm actually chomping at the bit. Thank ya'll for having this resource out here for newbers such as I.
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    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Welcome to the site. You will love the work as many of the members here do. Keep us up to date on your thoughts and experiences.
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Junior Member Madcow101's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Well, first day was boring. Very boring. After around noon we got into the little book with the two acronyms, signed in on our laptops, and got a few peptalks. The trainer was pretty cool as everyone was. I'll be glad to be out of the office though. Can't stand it.

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    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    How long is your training? How much will be in class vs. out in the field?
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Junior Member Madcow101's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    One week training, and three out with a "coach". We will be in class until Thursday. They seem to stress quality over quantity and are really good about answering questions no matter how trivial or what aspect of the job it's about. I know it was only a day, but they made a very good first impression. Lots of safety to. Most of the time will be speno talking about how not to get hurt.

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    Junior Member Madcow101's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    So it's training day two lunch time. Still not so bad, we have been doing all the safety stuff, learning how to maneuver through a ticket and doing safety stuff. Everything that's boring in other words. So far every person who has been here for any length of time has always had time to answer any questions we have had to the best of their ability.

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    Premium Member daman1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Madcow101 View Post
    So it's training day two lunch time. Still not so bad, we have been doing all the safety stuff, learning how to maneuver through a ticket and doing safety stuff. Everything that's boring in other words. So far every person who has been here for any length of time has always had time to answer any questions we have had to the best of their ability.
    The real learning starts in the field. Keep your eye out for an experienced co-worker who's seen things not described in a manual. You'll have to get in the field first and get to know your team mates but there's usually one who cares about a motivated newbie and is willing to share what he has learned outside the classroom. If not, there are a lot of good folks here to ask.
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    Senior Member Mark's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Madcow101 View Post
    New hire at USIC in Houston Texas. I do my first day of trainning tomorrow. Been looking foward to it for a long while. I come from a construction backround, my primary trade is painter, but I'm burnt out on that.Been reading here for about three weeks before I applied to get a sense of the work paying particular attention to the gripes. Read up on them at ibdeed.Com as well. theCablevine has been the most useful. Did the ride along and was lucky enough to do that on a day that was going pretty rough for the located on his first ticket and then got to go with him and another tech to help two new guys who were having some issues. Learned allot about the work that day.Seems pretty streight foward. Pay attention more then talk, ask questions, don't get wrapped up in drama with contractors and just do your work. I'm actually chomping at the bit. Thank ya'll for having this resource out here for newbers such as I.
    Welcome, and good luck!

    Sooo... you got burnt out painting stuff?

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    Junior Member Madcow101's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Quote Originally Posted by daman1 View Post
    The real learning starts in the field. Keep your eye out for an experienced co-worker who's seen things not described in a manual. You'll have to get in the field first and get to know your team mates but there's usually one who cares about a motivated newbie and is willing to share what he has learned outside the classroom. If not, there are a lot of good folks here to ask.
    Yes sir it does. The last day of class was today. I get a truck tomorrow and I'm with my coach for three weeks I think. While class doesn't answer allot of questions, it is important. Take notes and ask any questions you can think of. The trainer was very good. Everyone we talked to at the office when asked a question stopped, looked at anyone who asked and answered and kept explaining until we understood. Best thing I can say in my extremely limited experience it above all, don't get offended easy. Take nothing personally. When you talk to the techs out in the field they tend to be short and to the point. This is because they have massive work loads. Also, mess with the computer when you can. So far that's been the roughest part for me so far. I'm looking forward to hitting the field and messing with my equipment. I have located my cable line about five times already. Got bored with that and had a go at my neighbors. Cool stuff. Oh, one more thing I would do. Every time you get a number, save that in your phone. The guys here that I have met so far are pretty big on answering questions.

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    Junior Member Madcow101's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Welcome, and good luck!

    Sooo... you got burnt out painting stuff?
    Yes sir. Four houses a week, interior and exterior. Before that I was a paint and stain guy for a place that remodeled stair cases. Loved that job, but the owner had a Coke problem and it went under. My kids are all grown, I'm divorced and my girlfriend is not demanding so I can work all I want. I may be a sicko, but I think I'm going to like this.
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    Premium Member daman1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Madcow101 View Post
    Yes sir........ I may be a sicko, but I think I'm going to like this.
    Admitting that is the first step to becoming a true utility locator. You should get along well around here.

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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Cool stuff. Yea he's got a problem,wait til he starts to figure this stuff out he'll be one of us before you know it
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    Junior Member Madcow101's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Okay, got a coach, seems decent enough, but the first day was pretty much following him around and watching. In my mind it should be following him around and doing.

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    Premium Member daman1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Madcow101 View Post
    Okay, got a coach, seems decent enough, but the first day was pretty much following him around and watching. In my mind it should be following him around and doing.
    That's because your coach probably has a work load to keep up. He can only slow down so much to teach you before he gets behind. All I was when I trained was a flag guy. I'd watch my coach hook up and paint out the line and then walk behind him planting flags. Then while he was getting pics, I'd pack up the truck. Swore I'd be different when I trained people but wound up doing the same thing.

    Don't sweat it Madcow. Locating is pretty much a one man job. Once you know the principles and see what a tech does, the only way to learn is on your own. A good Sup won't give you high profile tickets until you've mastered the easier stuff but at some point, you'll just have to stand there interpreting BS prints and scratching your head until you figure things out. You'll spend the first year or so feeling insecure and under-qualified. That's normal. Most newbs don't last the first year because of that but if you keep at it, you'll have several "Ah Ha" moments that add up and you'll suddenly realize you haven't been insecure about a locate in weeks. Then they'll drop a newbie in the cab of your truck and you'll tell him the same thing. A list of platitudes. It's all about motivation, work ethic, gaining field experience, and understanding subtleties that can't be taught. Nothing you tell the new guy will teach him much about real world locating except to keep at it until he has an "AH Ha" moment of his own.
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    Senior Member ProfessionalLocator's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hey all.

    Quote Originally Posted by daman1 View Post
    That's because your coach probably has a work load to keep up. He can only slow down so much to teach you before he gets behind. All I was when I trained was a flag guy. I'd watch my coach hook up and paint out the line and then walk behind him planting flags. Then while he was getting pics, I'd pack up the truck. Swore I'd be different when I trained people but wound up doing the same thing.

    Don't sweat it Madcow. Locating is pretty much a one man job. Once you know the principles and see what a tech does, the only way to learn is on your own. A good Sup won't give you high profile tickets until you've mastered the easier stuff but at some point, you'll just have to stand there interpreting BS prints and scratching your head until you figure things out. You'll spend the first year or so feeling insecure and under-qualified. That's normal. Most newbs don't last the first year because of that but if you keep at it, you'll have several "Ah Ha" moments that add up and you'll suddenly realize you haven't been insecure about a locate in weeks. Then they'll drop a newbie in the cab of your truck and you'll tell him the same thing. A list of platitudes. It's all about motivation, work ethic, gaining field experience, and understanding subtleties that can't be taught. Nothing you tell the new guy will teach him much about real world locating except to keep at it until he has an "AH Ha" moment of his own.
    Ditto.

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