10 years ago, Joe Stevenson was ignoring his teachers, bunking classes and behaving like most 17-year-olds in school, disinterested.
But now, a decade later, the young technician is back at Bridgwater & Taunton College, to talk to the next generation of mechanical experts about his journey from mischief maker to an award winning business owner, with the help of Co-Founder Al Preston, and his business, WhoCanFixMyCar.com.
Presenting to a room of 16-20 year old apprentice technicians, Joe explained how his life had been turned around ever since he decided to stand up on his own two feet and set up his own business, Delilahs Mobile Mechanics, in 2016.
“I left college with qualifications but I didn’t know what to do with my life, so I started working in a restaurant.”
“After that, I decided to join the army and was sent to Kenya and around Europe where I utilised the skills I had picked up in college.
“Eventually I came back to England and started working in a garage.”
While working for another technician, Joe encountered WhoCanFixMyCar online and after using the platform to generate work for his boss, he realised he could go solo due to the amount of business avaliable on the platform.
Addressing the room, Joe continued;
“I joined WCFMC as a mobile mechanic and in a few months I had won over 200 jobs, I was so successful that I was awarded Best Mobile Technician 2016 in the WhoCanFixMyCar Garage Awards.”
“You guys might not know what you want from life, but I’m here to tell you that you can be successful in the automotive aftermarket if you work hard. It is a cut-throat industry but being a member of this platform has allowed me to run my own successful business.”
Al Preston then provided the students with an in-depth insight of how the automotive aftermarket is evolving online and how WCFMC has helped independent garages, manufacturer dealerships and mobile mechanics, all over the UK.
“We are currently generating over 45,000 service and repair jobs every month. The average invoice value per booking is £288.00 so you can imagine how much money is available to members like Joe.”
“There is a huge opportunity for digitally savvy technicians because there is so much work waiting to be claimed online. All you have to do is reach out and grab it.”
After presenting, Adrian Down and Jerry Kitchker, former tutors of Joe at the college, provided a walking tour of the automotive centre.
Bridgwater & Taunton College provides practical and academic training at their specialist automotive branch, where young people are able to develop their skills as technicians.
Students are able to apply their skills while working on major engineering projects and have contributed to the success of the college’s motor racing team with their work on a car which competes in national races (above).
The college also trains students on the Ford Masters Apprenticeship, an accredited course the global manufacturer has created to enhance the skills of young people learning the trade.
“It’s great to come back and talk to people who might be unsure about their future. The automotive aftermarket is a tough industry to work in and I have to work extremely hard to run my own business but it is incredibly satisfying which is the message I want to pass on.”
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