Electricians seem to be a highly forgotten-about job that doesn’t get nearly the credit that it’s due. When people think of service workers, they think of firefighters, factory workers, or even plumbers before thinking about electricians, which is crazy considering how important an electrician’s job is. They deal with the thing that’s interconnected with almost everything we use in one way or another: electricity.
Regardless of the amount of respect they get, electricians are a vital part of society and are just as valuable as any other service-based profession. However, due to their obscurity, people who are interested in becoming one sometimes don’t know what they’ll need to get into the industry. From equipment to personality traits, we are bringing you our list of the top essential items an electrician needs to be successful in their desired field.
The list of tools that an electrician could possibly need on the job site is nearly endless. You never know what types of hazards or abnormalities you could come across while working, so it doesn’t hurt to be prepared and bring everything. However, there are various tools that are a much more crucial part of an electrician’s toolbox, so we’ll go over those real quick.
Nut and screwdrivers are obvious inclusions here. Electricians are constantly taking things apart to get at some wires and then putting them back together. Most electricians have these holstered to them at all times. Pliers are another popular choice, although there are many to choose from. Needle-nose, tongue and groove, and side-cutting pliers are a few of the most common types that you’ll need.
Wire strippers will be an essential tool for electricians as well. There used to be many different sizes that an electrician would need to carry around, but these days, there are automatic versions that change to the size that is needed at the time. Drills, saws, and measuring tapes are other clear inclusions that should get considered too.
Tools aren’t the only necessary pieces of equipment an electrician should never leave home without. The clothes that they are wearing are just as important. Safety should be at the forefront of clothing choices, so something that is flame-resistant should be a top priority. Flame-retardant jackets are the best line of defense against sparks that come from the wires they are constantly working with. We have many different types of these jackets available if you are in need of one before your first day at work.
Regardless of flame resistance, the clothing that electricians wear should be loose-fitting and lightweight since most of them need to be able to move around freely without any constraints. If they are going to be working outside on either a construction site or late at night, electricians will need to wear a safety vest as well. That way, they will be clearly visible to other workers or passing cars.
Shoes are just as important as clothes here. Since most injuries occur when a charge gets completed from the wire to the ground by going through the person, having shoes that have soles with electrical isolation is vital to remaining unharmed. If an electrician wants to protect their toes from falling objects as well, they need to make sure the protective toecaps in their shoes aren’t made of metal.
Not only are the things that an electrician brings with them essential for success, but certain traits and attributes of a person are needed in order to be the best electrician you can be. The best example of this is being in good physical health. If you are physically weak, doing things like pulling yourself into a crawlspace or climbing a telephone pole will be much more difficult. Some electricians even have to scale tall buildings in order to do their job. While that’s an extreme example, it’s an excellent way of showing how a person’s physicality is a necessary component of being an electrician.
Even though many people in this industry work independently, communication is still a crucial skill to have. Whether you are talking about rates with a customer or going over what needs to be done at a job site, knowing how to speak to others effectively will come in handy. Electricians that can’t efficiently get their point across will spend more time explaining the task rather than doing it. Plus, poor communication can lead to an upset customer or an irate construction manager, neither of which is good for business.
Understandably, knowing where you left your tools and knowing which wires you’ve already worked on are critical parts of staying organized on the job, but having an innate sense of time management is just as necessary. Knowing how long a job should take in order to schedule another one after it will help you out drastically in the long run. Sure, it’ll take time to master, but starting with a fundamental level of time management and organization will make many parts of the job much easier down the line.
Strong Mental State
Having a baseline understanding of math and science will go a long way in this field. Physics is constantly at play when determining what you need to do in order to fix the problem at hand. Now, we don’t mean you need to have a doctorate to do this job, but a basic understanding and a willingness to learn will help you exceed standard expectations.
On the other side of the mental game, having strong perseverance will be beneficial as well. This job can be stressful and doesn’t always go according to plan. Outside forces such as weather, other people, or even a complex problem that needs solving can deter those who aren’t willing to endure the challenges the job can bring.
We saved the most essential item an electrician needs to be successful for last, which is a mindset that puts safety as the top priority. While one of the most useful things that society has made, electricity can also be one of the most dangerous. Between getting shocked or burned, there are a lot of aspects that an electrician needs to keep in mind while on the job. If they aren’t constantly thinking about the possible dangers of their next action, then they aren’t doing their job properly. Not only is their own safety at risk when they do this, but the safety of everyone around them as well. If safety isn’t a top priority for you, becoming an electrician might not be the job you are looking for.