Study, work hard, attend classes and you'll make a buncha money!
The myth: The more a tech knows the more he/she will be paid.
I suspected early in my career that the dealers (and sometimes the independent shop owners) who would promise a "six-figure income" for the smartest tech, would never pay that person those numbers. It became more obvious as time went on, the tech who managed "some how" to turn the highest numbers got paid the most, smart or not, and yes some actually saw over $100k.
I took it upon myself to become the best tech I could be. I'm still sacrificing a personal life to this day to maintain my edge. Being this smart a tech never provided me a six-figure income - unless one includes the figures to the right of the decimal place ;-). Truth be told, if you expect to make Wall Street wages you're in the wrong business.
I call it a myth!
I have to agree with you, why didn't I listen to my Dad? Made damned sure my son listened to me!
It is not a myth, many in this business that train and know what they are doing make six figures. But no it is NOT EASY, most techs undersell themselves when they are working out terms of employment, and think the money will just show up by magic, no you have to insist on it.
Is that you? Good to see you. Long time. I agree. I know I busted my behind for many years turning over 70 billable hours week in and week out and never made it to half of six figures. Btw. I need someone with your highly skilled OCD to organize my shop. Lol.
Hi Mickey! Long time no see. BTW, in MY world, it's CDO... Same as OCD but in the correct alphabetical order! LOL
Gotta be impossible for anyone with attention to detail to make money flat rate. Glad I never had to try it. I've heard stories from a couple guys that used to work at dealers. They cut so many corners the cars looked round when they were done!
in a 40-45 hour work week, I would have to agree. But I think the market you live in has a lot to do with it. I am about 40-45 minutes outside of Chicago. I know of a few who do it. And I do know of 1 shop that employs a diagnostician who makes it.
It's up to the tech to negotiate their pay. It's not only car smarts that gets you there, but also business smarts. If an owner can pay you half to do work that you will gladly do at that wage, they won't care. A lot of things go into making that kind of money, location, market, skills, having the told and equipment etc. But ultimately you probably agreed to what you are getting paid. I
I've worked in major metropolitan areas, small towns and everywhere in between. Negotiate all you want - but if I were to ask what it would take for me to make 6 figures ("up to the tech to negotiate their pay"), I couldn't find an employer willing to pay it within a 100 mile radius. I was promised on several occasions "you have the potential to make..." but they couldn't maintain the car count
Man that's a pretty negative response. Btw, when i said half, I didn't mean half the labor rate. I meant half your worth. If you are the top guy in a shop that makes over 2 million a year, and you don't get paid that, YOU'RE IN THE WRONG SHOP. PERIOD. It seems you've only done flat rate by what I read in your post. I'm not flat rate, anymore(Those owners tend to be worse than a well
Thank you for the clarifications Mario. I'm still unsure about some of your statements (meaning not clear to me) but I think I get your gist. Thankfully, I'm not a "tech" anymore; I'm more of a businessman who happens to do Tech stuff every now and then. I never worked as a tech when shops started paying salaries until my last gig, when I worked for Steve Brotherton. So, yes, my negative
"Man that's a pretty negative response." (To Jaime.) Don't forget he has 39 years experience. You'll think the same one day too. :-) Wages in this industry stagnated twenty years ago. But for now; Are you the "Super Mario Diag" channel on YouTube? I just found that one. I got a GoPro for my birthday and want to start doing videos too. Seems like a good way to make the job seem fun again. I've
Yup that's me, go easy on me buddy:)
I pretty much try to watch every video that I can cuz out here (West Maui) I might only get one diag every few days, even though I am THE diag/electrical guy at this shop. Car owners are all like ffffing high school kids out here, even at 50 years old. They suck!
The one I always liked was when the employer came up to me unannounced (usually because he was paying me more than he intended) and said he was coming up with a new pay plan that was designed to make me even more money. NOT!!
I give them an "A" for ingenuity when it comes to stuff like that.
The problem that I have seen is the six figure techs are great part hangers. Let's face it, the big dollars are in brake jobs, CV axles, clutches, tune-ups and anything you can learn to do fast. When we talk about a Master Technician and especially a diagnostic technician, we find that many service advisors have no clue as to what it takes to properly diagnose a vehicle. You should be able to
Michael Christopherson, yours and my experiences are almost identical, right down to the great year I had involving a lot of AC work. I too have found my niche, and as a mobile tech, one who is often times a shop's last resort, am making what I want (unlike the past - NOT making what was promised). My education, the one obtained throughout my whole career, until recently was abused by employers
To make big bucks on flats rate you have to be "stupid"...so all the crappy work goes to the other guys.
It seems to help get into the door, but it still comes down to how much one can make for the employer - therefore, a good mechanic without any certifications normally make more than the most certified technicians.
I’ll have to stick with a myth since I haven’t seen it for myself... Yet lol. when I first started in 09 at the School the teachers would all talk about making 6 figures at the dealer. I want that too!! How do I get it? Their answers were all the same. You need more credentials, You need more experience, and you need to find someone who will value you..... Well I went for a journey and I hunted
Brother, there are plenty of shops that will pay good money in South Florida. Rise above it man. I know of a couple of shops that will pay double that plus commission. If your worth your salt. And if you are the tech i think you are, it should be a piece of cake.
I‘m not from Missouri but show me!
Missouri is the "show me state"
You guys are killing me 😄
Mario, There isn't enough money in the world that would motivate me to move BACK to S.E. Florida. I was born and raised in Miami, went back after my stint in the US Navy, and have been nothing but damn GLAD ever since I moved away. You may be right, that some shop owners there might be willing to pay $100k or more, but it's not worth it if I had to live there. Thanks but, no thanks. (Edited to
Good for you 👍 good luck! I think I understood you from your first response :)
Jaime, The US Department of Labor's 2017 statistics tend to support your myth.
I know the average tech pay is lower than it should be, and some of that has to do with our labor rates are lower than they should be. But I think those statistics are lower than what the average tech pay really is because they have lube techs and tire techs included.
Ed, as does the State of Florida's statistics.
I have been into the six figure club for ten years now. All it took was moving halfway across the country, and ditching automotive for the heavy truck industry.
I think it is very possible but like it has been covered there is not a sign on every street corner for techs to come make 100k here. I think the big key is finding the right employers to work for and for me that would be a family type owned business. There probably is a little luck involved and being in the right place at the right time but i have accomplished this goal and so have others that
The truth remains. When you work for a small shop or a large corporation your value is determined by what they are willing to pay. I had a great deal at one shop for a while until the boss made changes that improved his life and made mine worse. When you take the risk and become your own boss, you have nobody but yourself to blame when it comes to income. I make far from six figures right now. I
I guess my next question towards this would be are we talking about just techs or would a shop foreman fall into this subject as well? If I dont want to work on something or someones car i wont but that rarely happens. As far as the customer getting charge what i think is appropriate I think everyone should be doing that on every job but I do realize most techs are not in control of what is
Hey Chris, If you are happy with your career then that is what matters.
A six figure tech actually has a huge measure of control. At the end of the day, all shops must fix cars, and do it efficiently. There is a massive skilled tech shortage, and quite a few shops are hurting quite bad because they cannot deliver thier basic fundamental purpose: fix cars. Find a shop that is buried, step up and knock their entire workload out and their attitude changes immensely…