When I took a week off of posting, it was done for two reasons:
First, I needed a break from uploading public posts. The blog does take a fair amount of time to do every day.
Second, I knew that I was going to start looking for employment and wanted to have enough posts on autopost to last over a week (done). I knew that if I started a job in the sector that I was looking at, I would be tired until I got used to it and the shift work.
I found employment at a car parts manufacturer via a great agency in Guelph and started working on a dashboard assembly line in the welding department this past Monday. After an hour, I thought that I didn’t fit the job. After 4 hours, I knew that I didn’t really fit the job. At the end of the Monday shift, I knew this wasn’t going to work out for me. I gave it another day to make sure of my thoughts and it only reinforced that fact that this job wasn’t for me. Plus, for the first time in my working career, I really sucked at this job…big time.
The people in my work team were great. They all helped out the new guy (me) as best they could. My team leader for the section I was in was excellent. She also did the best that she could for me, but I still sucked at the job, the easiest job on our line. I was operating three robots in a sequence, loading parts etc. I kept breaking the light bar, tripping the safety mechanism that stops the machine so you don’t get hurt. She was going to bring in someone to help me with additional training on Wednesday. I knew that I wouldn’t make the week out, so why waste any more of the company’s time, effort and money on someone who was going to leave in the next day or two? The company was fair with me so I must be fair back. It would be best for me to cut both of our losses before any more training was invested in me. So I quit. It was the first job in my life I actually ever quit because of the job. I’ve changed jobs over the years, but not because I didn’t fit into the job and be able to do it properly in a timely manner.
I have worked in a hospital kitchen for 3 years, prospected for diamonds for 3 seasons in the northern Ontario bush, sold cars for 6 years and achieved the status of Sales Master for each of my final 3 years in the car business. I sold Nissan and then Honda automobiles. I earned two business degrees from the University of Ottawa. I was a Sales Representative for a pyrotechnics company for 17 years. While there I looked after clients, forecasted sales and production quantities, did trade shows, as required I filled in as a printers’ assistant, jogging and cutting millions of fireworks covers, did warehouse work, worked production lines for special fireworks clients, designed & fired over 80 display shows, was a shipper, a receiver and drove a forklift. It was a small company so everyone in the company did what was required at that moment and forget about any titles. That’s what happens in small companies. Titles are for clients only and the rest of the time everyone just made sure that the job got done. It was the results that mattered, not who did it. My family were partial owners of the company during that time. And most importantly, I’ve been a stay at home Dad for the past several years looking after the ODDLING and Mrs ODDMAN. I did these jobs to the best of my abilities and have enjoyed them all, especially the stay at home Dad one. I also spent 5 months cycling around Europe after university (took the trains through the Alps though). I’m not afraid of work.
I am 57 and realized very quickly last Monday that it is too late for me to start a career on an automobile parts assembly line. I wanted to succeed, but I didn’t fit the the job. If I was 20, I’d go for the work and all the mandatory overtime in a flash because you can train your body very quickly while you’re young. It’s hard to start that training at 57 when perfection on the line is mandatory within a few days. Downtime costs a lot of money. I caused too much downtime.
This was a wonderful opportunity for me to learn new things. I love watching TV shows about production, I always have. I like to see things being made. Television does not do the manufacturing process/plants justice. This plant is visually incredible inside with all the robots and workers. The attention to safety, quality, wastage, the quickness of the techies fixing the robots when they go down along with many other things was impressive. Looking at the robots performing really impresses on you the incredible engineering that takes place to not only in the manufacture the robots, but to organize the lines for production. Looking on the floor you can then actually begin to see the incredible amount of organization required to run the plant. Then factor in all of the feeder plants to them and then factor that they are a feeder plant to other plants as well. The plant was clean. The cafeteria was spotless. The investment on the plant and robotics is incredible. This was noticed in just two days. I am impressed.
Unfortunately, it was not for me as I just didn’t fit what was required for the job.
So I go back to looking for other employment. Depending on what happens, I’ll see if I have to reduce the daily posts a bit, or not. I’ll play it by ear.
I just want to say this, I give my respect to all the assembly line workers out there. It isn’t an easy job and assembly workers make the vast majority of products that we purchase. No matter how many robots are out there, you still need a great team of workers in order to make it happen.
When a product is hot, you produce to the market demand and overtime is required. This company is meeting their clients demand.
David the ODDMAN