Women in the trades
By Swizzle | Published
This past year (2015) I was lamenting to a fellow parent, at a soccer game, that it was difficult to find quality workers in the construction industry. I have had my run with 2o somethings, who are high on themselves, confident that they are gods gift to the earth, and completely distracted by the smartphone in their possession. They are also quite delusional about what it is to be a carpenter. I have tried "mature" workers who are often very demanding, very focused on what they can get from the company, and very good at gaming every situation. Well, this fellow, that I was speaking to, said, "Hey have you ever thought of hiring a woman?" Well my answer was yes. As a matter of fact I hired a woman back in 2010. She lasted just two days and was gone. He said, "I know a woman who has some skills, is looking for a construction job, and will work any man into the ground." I can safely say, 8 months later, he's right, she is the best worker I've ever hired. Carrie went through the OTI (Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc) training program a few years back. She had one job with a local SE Portland contractor, who didn't treat her very well, and then came across my path. In a very short time she is my crew manager and one of the most eager, hardworking and quick learning carpenters I have ever seen. In short succession I hired another woman, Stephanie, who Carrie knew from the same program. Stephanie has proved to be a perfectionist, a quick study and a multi-talented carpenter of formidable abilities. These are the two best cohorts I have had since entering the construction business, full time, in 2010. Kudos to OTI, and kudos to the power of women; women driven to prove they are the equal, or better, of any man in a male dominated industry.
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