How to Get a Job in the Auto Industry!

– So, you like cars so much, you want to make 'em your career, huh? Well, you came to the right place. Today, I'll tell you how,
whether you have a degree or no experience at all,
everything from working in lube shops, the
aftermarket, service centers, racing, sales, even media. I talked to a bunch of
people who have done it all and are waiting to work
with the next generation. Let's make it happen. (funky music) – Thanks to Keeps for
sponsoring today's video. Ever since I moved back to my parents, I've been spending time going
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hair, I would dominate the paint in high school. No one could touch
Uncle the Birdman Jerry, and I was going to the NBA,
but then everything changed when I became one of the
two out of three guys to experience some form
of male pattern baldness by the time I was 35.

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50% off your first order. Thanks for the memories, Mr. Basketball. Hey, at least I still got good legs. (falcon cawing) Oh, shut up, Dave. You don't have a urethra. (laughing) (video beeping) – First things first. If you're still in school
and have the opportunity to take an auto shop class,
take the auto shop class. This is where you can get
your feet wet and work with a bunch of tools
you probably wouldn't have easy access to. After you graduate, now what? Well, you can go to college or
go right into the workforce. If you want to work for a big
manufacturer as a designer, engineer, or in their
marketing division or whatever, pretty much have to go to college, but we'll talk about that later.

There are a lot of ways
to get into the industry that don't require a formal
education, but first let's talk about the mindset you need to have. Coffee's hitting, dude. Don't think of your job search as finding a job in the auto industry. That's too broad and won't
help you get focused. Think of it as finding
a job you'd want anyway that happens to be centered around cars. Once you decide on what kind
of work you want to be doing, you got to have a plan or
at least a goal in mind. It's okay if you don't have
an entire timeline laid out. I don't really either, but
if you don't at least have an idea of where you want
to end up, you run the risk of falling into a rut with
a job you don't really love, and I don't want that for you.

So let's talk about a great first step for someone who wants to work with cars who has no experience
or college education. Oil and tires. Changing oil and installing
tires might not be the most glamorous gig in the world, but you don't have to do it forever. These are entry level jobs. Think of them as your education
on how to work and behave in a shop environment, which
is valuable experience. These businesses have
no problem hiring people with limited skills, even
if you're a teenager. If you stick around in a
lube shop or tire shop, you might be able to work
your way up to a manager or you can put your experience
on a resume for a new job in say, the aftermarket. If you don't want to
work with oil or tires, there are plenty of entry-level jobs in the automotive aftermarket. I'm talking about all
the businesses that build all the cool parts you
see Zach Jobe or Gingium or Mighty Car Mods
install in their builds.

All of those came from
dedicated manufacturers that you could work at,
but without experience, you got to start at the
bottom which in many cases means working in the warehouse. Now, just because you
aren't product planning or making sales doesn't mean
that working in the warehouse is a bad place to get
your foot in the door. You're going to be packing
boxes, moving pallets around, taking inventory, maybe
making some shipping labels, and gaining significant forearm strength. Yeah, I remember using the pallet jack. I'll never forget you, Maggie. You're also going to be learning perhaps the most valuable knowledge of knowing how the company operates and integrating into that company culture.

From a warehouse position,
you can probably work your way into the sales department,
where you can focus on either retail or wholesale,
selling directly to customers versus selling to other businesses. The cool thing about sales
is that you don't need specialized technical training. You just need to be good
with people, and if you show interest in that sort of work, your employer will
probably train you in it, and that doesn't just go for sales. Say you think you have
good ideas for products, and your employer does too. It's likely they'll show you
how to develop those skills if you show you have the drive to learn. (video beeping) If you're liking these jobs so
far, how about you do the job of hitting that like
button, really helps us out. Thank you. (video beeping) Let's move on to a more obvious
way to work around cars, working at a dealership. The most well-known car job
besides mechanic is probably car salesman, but there are
plenty of jobs at a dealership that require little experience
and that you probably didn't know you could get paid to do.

You could work inside a
dealership answering phones for their business development center. You can work in the back
office handling DMV paperwork. Some dealerships are so
big that they need someone just to move cars around the lot and shuttle customers around town. They usually call this position a porter. You can also work in dealership
finance, but that does take a bit of previous experience. Okay, so what if you actually want to work with the inventory? You can get your foot in
the door detailing the cars, making them all nice and shiny
before they leave the lot. If you're handy with a
camera and have a portfolio to prove it, you can work in a dealership's photography department. Many luxury car dealers
need someone to shoot cars in their onsite studios
because their inventory is constantly shifting. Then of course, there's car sales itself, which does require experience. Some states require a license
to become a car sales rep, but the dealership would
probably help you get that and train you for the job if
you already work for them, but what if you want to work on cars? Then you need to get
into the service center.

Here, you'll be doing regular
maintenance on customer cars or work your way up to serious repairs like replacing drivetrain components. Entry-level jobs at
service centers include lube and tire tech positions
we discussed earlier, but there is room for growth. Now you can become a mechanic
just by working on stuff, but dealerships really value something called ASE certification. The National Institute for
Automotive Service Excellence, or ASE, is a nonprofit org
that tests and certifies automotive technicians so
you know that they know what they're (bleep)
they're doing to your car when it's in the shop.

You don't technically
need to be ASE certified to be a mechanic but it's
really good to have it. Shops and dealerships only
need one ASE technician to put up an ASE plaque,
but the more the better. Dealerships will train you and pay for your ASE certification because it's in their best interest to do so. The more people they have certified, the better it looks on the door. The cool thing about
dealerships in my eyes is that there's a good amount of
upward mobility within the business if you dedicate
yourself to the work. It's totally possible to go
from driving customer shuttles to a high position in
the service department. My buddy Vincent did just that. I had another friend who
went from being a porter to taking pictures to becoming a salesman. It's really on you to get
after the job you want. Okay, so what if you
want to build cars like, learn how to work with
metal, learn how to wire up an electrical system, build some engines, and show some artistry.

How do you get a job in a custom shop? It's not like if you get a
degree in hot rodding, right? In my experience, these
are the kinds of businesses you have to approach in
person and flat out ask if you can work there. It varies from shop to shop
but it really helps to have a prior relationship with
them or know an employee who can get you an introduction. Many of these custom shops
will train you on the fly, according to a sink or swim mentality.

The people that run these
shops will skip having you sweep floors and get you
on a project right away to see how you react. Attitude is more important than skill when you're first starting out. You have to be teachable. A big thing for me was
getting over my desire to look like I knew what I
was doing and ask for help and actually taking in what
my boss was trying to teach me instead of saying, yeah,
yeah, yeah, I know that. Yeah, oh yeah, yeah. Getting over that is very important. I asked my friend, John Benton,
owner of Benton Performance down in Anaheim, what he
looks for in candidates. He said besides basic trade
skills, he refers to a sign posted in his shop, and here it is. (static buzzing) Like I said, these places
value attitude very highly. (funky music) Let's talk about racing jobs. It is possible to get paid for racing, just probably not how you expect. Very, very few people actually get paid to be behind the wheel. Short of top tier series like Formula 1, the NASCAR Cup series and
Indy Car, not a lot of drivers get paid to drive.

pexels photo 4467857

In fact, a lot of drivers pay to drive. We actually talked about
that a few weeks ago. Still, you can have a career in racing. If you're already versed
in a trade like welding or machining, that does make
it easier to get in the door at a race team, and I'm
talking like a pro level race team like NASCAR. If you don't have the skills
though, you can still get in. If you happen to be a college
athlete watching this, a NASCAR or Indy team is
looking for your talents. Most of the pit crews
in the NASCAR Cup series are former college athletes,
and if you get recruited to a Cup team, that's
a full-time paid job. You can still get paid
to be on a pit crew, but if you're not at the Cup
series, if you're working on Xfinity or Truck or ARCA
series, like, you're moving around a lot getting a
lot of gigs, all right. Once you get to the Cup
series, that's when it's like, okay, you're on the team. That's full time, boom, you're in.

Like a custom shop, don't
be afraid to approach a team and ask if there's anything
you can do to help. They're probably not gonna
announce any job posting. Just go to a team and introduce yourself. These teams do have positions
that are like internships or apprenticeships where you're
going to be doing odd jobs around the facility like
sweeping, taking vinyl off a race car, or helping
organize the office.

The cool thing about some
racing organizations is that you don't necessarily need
to know a lot about racing to work for a team. As much as racing is about
strategy and skill on the track, teams are always looking for new ideas to help optimize their organization. NASCAR itself is famous for
hiring people outside the sport to keep it fresh and
maintain its relevance. Once you're in an organization,
cultivate a circle of people that can begin to trust
you and your abilities. Don't be afraid to ask questions and ask if you can try something out. Might be good at it, you
might not, but at least you showed initiative, which
race teams value immensely. Like many of the other
jobs we've talked about, there's no textbook for this career. A ton of learning is
hands-on, which brings me to my next job. I bet there's a few of you watching this who want to make car
videos and get paid for it.

I'll tell you what our creative
director Jesse told me, because he's been in
this game for a while. The most direct way to make
money shooting car content is to shoot for brands as a
freelancer, but unlike some of the other paths I've talked about so far, this one's gonna take a lot of persistence and doing stuff for free. If you want to make car videos for money, you better make sure you're
good at making any kind of video with any kind of equipment. Too many people get caught up
choosing gear when they have a phone in their pocket the whole time. Starting with subpar equipment
is how you hone your craft. You learn how to work around constraints. Once you've mastered the basics
with your phone or a GoPro, then move up to a dedicated
camera like a DSLR, preferably used because you
don't need the best stuff.

You're still learning. Now you can do what a lot
of my friends have done to fund their car content
and that's shoot weddings. It pays pretty good. You do it on the weekend and you'll learn how to become a filmmaker. To that point, film school
is beneficial for sure, but there's also a ton of
filmmaking resources on YouTube. You can totally teach
yourself how to do this. All right, it's time to
shoot some car stuff. You're going to have to go
to where the cars are at. Go to tracks, go to meets, wherever, but don't go in without a plan. For your work to get
good, you need to have a vision for what you're trying to make before you even start shooting. It can evolve on location,
but have that game plan. Otherwise, what are you going to edit? Oh, also learn to edit. When you're just starting out,
you're going to be shooting a lot of stuff for free.

This is a period of
building your portfolio. Think of it as an apprenticeship that you're paying yourself for. Another thing, you got
to watch a lot of stuff, but not passively. Pay attention to what makes content good and why people like watching it. If you want to get paid for your work, you need to understand what
makes something appealing to a wider audience. Remember, we're not making
stuff just because we like it. We want to make stuff that
other people will like, and in the case of being
a freelance shooter, you're making something
that a brand will like, and then write you a check for it. Finally, what if you
actually want to design cars? Unlike most of the jobs
I've talked about so far, becoming an engineer does
require a formal education, usually a degree in mechanical
engineering to start. Try to find a school that
has a formula SAE team. Formula SAE is where college
kids get to design, build, and race their own race cars.

It's really sick. Big shout out to Matador
Motorsports at CSU Northridge. Formula SAE competitions
are regularly scouted by recruiters from the
automotive industry. So that's a great place
to make an impression and also just gain a lot of
experience designing a car, but it's not the only way. Last year, David Tracy wrote
a really great story on how eight different engineers got
their start in the industry. I'll link it down in the
description right now. The common thread in every
story is that they all studied super hard in college
and got any internships they could in the industry. They might not have landed
their dream job right away, but internships allow
you to integrate yourself into the company culture
and find out how things really work in the office. Another key to breaking into
the biz doesn't just apply to working in an OEM, but
many, many other industries, and that is being persistent.

The truth is, there's
no predetermined path to your dream job, and the journey is different for everybody. You're going to have to feel
some things out on your own, but something we all
possess is the ability to keep on trying until you get there. You might not have the skills
right now to do what you want to do, but that doesn't
mean that you never will. You've got to write some
emails, call some people up, knock on some doors and an opportunity will present itself eventually.

It pays to be professionally persistent. Don't overdo it, don't be annoying. Certainly don't harass
a potential employer because that's bad, but do
remind people of your existence and something should
happen, but maybe the most important thing to keep
in mind is to find a job where you can go home
happy on a regular basis because that's worth a lot
more than a fancy job title. So whatever it is you want to do, I sincerely believe in you. You can do it. – [Announcer] Big announcement. – Donut is looking for new co, sorry, can you go back to the beginning? (video beeping) You guys, Donut is looking for new hosts. Do you love cars? Do you know how to work on cars? Do you have a potentially unhealthy desire to be the center of attention? Perfect, then go here or click the link in the description below. We're looking for the funniest
person in the pit crew, the most hilarious person in the shop.

If this is you, submit to be a host. If this sounds like someone you know, encourage them to submit to be a host. The last time we did this, we met both Zach Jobe and Jeremiah. – Thank you guys so much for
watching my audition video. – Hello Donut Media. My name is Zach Jobe. – You could seriously be next. So go ahead and click that
link or send it to a friend and let's make videos about cars together. – Goodbye. – Thank you very much
for watching Wheelhouse. I hope you enjoyed this one
and I hope you go out there and do it, whatever it is you want to do. Big thank you to Mitch
at Stewart Haas Racing, John Benton at Benton
Performance, Vincent Vigil, Austin Gesso, Adam Knappick,
Zach Jobe, and Jesse Wood for your help on this episode. I couldn't have made it without you guys. If you're a Donut super
freak and want to connect with other Donut fans around the world and get exclusive content,
check out the Donut Underground by hitting that join button down there.

Follow Donut Media on all
social media @donutmedia. Follow me @nolanjsykes if you like. Be kind, follow your dreams,
and I'll see you next time..

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