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Viega’s Ricky Maynard, VTen Sales Manager at Viega, Speaks about why the Skills for Success are so important

How did you get involved in a skilled trade?

After graduating from high school, I had a few jobs that left me with little room to grow. With help from my uncle, I began my plumbing apprenticeship at UA Local 3 in Denver,
Colorado, and after five years I completed my apprenticeship. This led me into journeyman and master plumbing licenses. Later into my career, while working as a general foreman on a project for Viega, I met Bo DeAngelo, the Manager of the training department who encouraged me to apply. Shortly after, I was offered a training position.
After training installers for a couple of years, I now work in the trade school program and I train trade school instructors on Viega’s products.


What do you love about your job?

What I love is seeing a project come to completion. Working with Viega I found my passion for teaching and being able to work within the trade school I built is an amazing
feeling. The only thing that’s better is the look on the faces of students, when they find out my only formal education is the same school as theirs.

Out of the nine Skills for Success, which one(s) do you feel are important to have to work in your trade?

Communication –Effective communication keeps the ball rolling, so all the different phases of a construction project come together. When training, I make sure everyone understands so that they can then pass that information on correctly.

Collaboration – Whether it is a plumbing project or a training event, it often takes a team of people to get things done. Being able to work with others and collaborate is key to success.

Problem-solving – I have never been on a construction project that didn’t have at least one problem. Being able to find solutions is crucial to being successful on a jobsite.


What is your career advice for young people?

For people that aren’t sure about college or university, research the skilled trades. There are several trades in desperate need of workers. Skilled trades can lead to a great salary, and you can start before you’ve finished high school. My generation was told all the time that you have to go to college to get a good job. I make more than double what the teachers that said that to us make, and my retirement plan is significantly better than theirs.

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