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The five elements of learning a skill or trade

Last updated on 16 August 2021

Before anyone engages in a training the most important thing is to cover health and safety Most skills have inherent dangers associated with them and the trainee needs to be aware of these before they go any further This would be the first element ob learning your craft.

In the past when learning a trade or skill many trainees would complete an apprenticeship whereas these days more seem to learn at university However you do it, there are four further elements to be completed.

Firstly there is function. Function is what something does. Does it work? This is probably the single most important element of any trade ensuring that what you make actually does the job. If you are an electrician will your electrics power the equipment . A cook will need to know that their food is both properly cooked and tastes nice. Function is the first part of learning a trade.

The second element to acquiring a new skill is Form. Form is what your product looks like. Appearance is how you are initially judged. With electrics this isn’t so important as much of it is hidden The tradesperson would however for safety sake like everything to be tidy and well presented. The cook on the other hand knows that their product needs to be well presented as people judge food partly on how it is presented. A nice meal that has been stirred around likes a pigs breakfast would not be very popular despite it tasting nice.

Next there is accuracy This is linked to function but with some trades will go on improving as the artisan gets more experience. The main reason that apprenticeships used to last many years is to develop a higher relative sense of accuracy .Some trades lend themselves to the importance of accuracy more than others.

Finally there is speed. The speed of work brings in the commercial element of the trade. Most trades people will manage after a time to complete the tasks to a suitable standard but speed is where they earn their money. It is essential that the trainee focuses on this element last, once the other four are in place. Speed often comes some time after the skill has been mastered.

Learning a trade is becoming one of the most guaranteed ways of earning a long term living.

Peter.

Published inBUSINESSSelf development