A Safety & Training Engineer's Perspective

Craig didn't know where his career as a lineman might take him. Today, he is a safety and training engineer, developing and implementing safe work practices for the Midwest's premier electric power and mechanical contractor.

How did your experience as a lineman prepare you for your current job?

Years of working in the field gave me the perspective of what life is like doing line work under real conditions. My background has definitely played a major role in developing a mutual trust and respect between the workers in the field and myself. This in turn, helps me to communicate and to motivate the crews to not only take an active part in implementing and improving safe work practices but more importantly, to take ownership in it as well.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?

The most rewarding aspect of my current position is watching a young worker eagerly participate in a training session and apply that training at the jobsite.

What is the least rewarding aspect of your job?

As a lineman, travel was hard on family life. As a safety trainer, having to report on an accident or hearing about an accident that involved a serious injury is always a challenge.

What should a lineman do to prepare themselves for a management position?

Take advantage of all training available. Make time for self-improvement and take a class on anything that interests you. Business classes are very useful, especially on how to deal with people and time management.

What do you look for in new hires?

First and foremost, a candidate must have the willingness and desire to learn. Other qualities I look for are:

  • Common sense
  • A desire to work outdoors in all types of weather conditions
  • Experience around equipment and machinery
  • Physically able to do the job