Most of the educational opportunities I take advantage of now are management or marketing related. I also attend conferences geared towards women in auto care and female entrepreneurs. Mostly because I believe you should never stop learning, and keeping myself current by learning from people that are experts in their field helps me to be better at what I do. On occasion, I take advantage of an automotive technical class. Why? I work in the automotive industry and while I don’t repair vehicles, I need to expose myself to new technology. Several weeks ago I went to a class with Jeff and one of our technicians, Gordon. Contrary to what many people believe, diagnostics doesn’t simply consist of ‘hooking up the scanner’. Vehicles have many interconnected systems and our technicians need to know what to look for when one of them is malfunctioning. One section of the training was on catalytic converter (cats) diagnostics. While I have been exposed to many conversations about catalytic converters and I have an understanding of how they work, it was a good reminder of why an experienced, educated technician is important to our customers. A cat replacement is not generally an inexpensive repair. Having someone who explains how you can care for your car to delay or avoid a part replacement is invaluable. You can reduce the cost of vehicle repairs by investing in maintenance. A catalytic converter is not a ‘lifetime’ part and when you are utilizing a technician with training, they will notice running issues that may impact not just the performance of your car, but the wear of your parts. While I learned a lot, you still don’t want me working on your vehicle. I’ll stick to my responsibilities and let my team use their knowledge and experience to keep our customers on the road!