If you’re starting in an electrical apprenticeship, congratulations! You’ve made an excellent decision to gain the training you’ll need to pursue a successful career. It’s an investment in your future that will pay dividends for many years.

Right now you’re probably unsure of what to expect from your program. That’s understandable: after all, this is uncharted waters for you, and you can’t be expected to know much at this point.

So to help you along, here are a few pointers that could help you as you move forward in your electrician apprenticeship program.

Show That You are Reliable

It’s important to remember that your employer and your coworkers are counting on you to be there. You need to do good work, but it doesn’t matter how good your work is if you can’t get to the job on time.

And once you are saddled with a reputation for unreliability, it’s hard to get rid of it. It will follow you from job to job, informing future employers that you have a history of not showing up.

Any boss will agree that an average electrician who shows up consistently is better than the star worker who no one can count on. If being on time isn’t something that comes naturally to you, you should practice until you are good at it—it’s that important!

Keep Track of Your Hours

Depending on where you live, the number of hours you’ll need to work to complete your training will be different. Once you have determined the number of hours required, make sure you keep a record of them in a manner that fulfills your state’s obligations.

Your goal is to become a licensed electrician and to do that you’ll need to work the required hours and have an accurate record of them.

Become Familiar with the National Electrical Code

The National Electrical Code (NEC) is a collection of definitive guidelines for the safe and secure installation of electrical equipment and wiring. It looks daunting, but you’ll eventually feel right at home with it. So, if at first you feel intimidated by the NEC, keep studying, and you’ll soon get the hang of it.

Prepare Yourself for a Little Dirty Work

For the first part of your apprenticeship, you’ll be doing your share of menial tasks. Don’t be discouraged. Every apprentice has served time on the cleanup crew, performing all those no-skill jobs like removing debris and trash from the worksite.

You’ll be everyone’s “gofer,” running for tools and supplies—even picking up lunch for your coworkers on occasion. You might find these tasks irritating, but it’s best not to let it show. It’s part of your job, and you’re not being singled out. Your best course of action is to do mundane tasks with a smile and gain a reputation for being cooperative.

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